September 2016 Review

Inspired by popular podcasters John Lee Dumas and Pat Flynn, I feel it a duty to continue the trend of producing monthly income reports.

However since this blog isn’t currently being monetised I will produce a monthly blog post that charts progress, mistakes and lessons learnt.

The benefit of this is that it catalogs the activities that have occurred in the month.

It is important to reflect on the past in order to understand what happened. This learning period will prevent the same mistakes from happening again.

1) 9 blog posts were written and published

The key to any long-term success is constant action, so I’m pleased that I managed to get 9 pieces of content for the world to devour out there.

I started a challenge set by the $100MBA show host Omar Zenhom whereby I am required to write 500 words for 21 days. While this generated impetus to create content, sadly I still need to work on actually writing 500 words per day.

2) Traffic

Looking at my sources of traffic, it is clear to see that overwhelming Facebook wins it. The little traffic that I am getting comes from there.

So what do I do in Facebook?

Firstly, when I publish any new post a link is published on my Facebook page – which means anyone that has liked my page has the potential to see it.

Secondly, I use Buffer to repost links of old blog posts to both twitter and Facebook.


As we can see this is having little impact on twitter but is reaching people in Facebook land.

Finally, I post links to my latest blog post in a Facebook group that allows promotion – this is only on a specific day of the week.

It is also worth mentioning that traffic (albeit very little) is coming from Twitter – thanks to Buffer posting links, google and from me leaving comments on the Neil Patel Blog.

3) Number of views

Ok drum roll please…

For the month of September, I had 115 page views. With a data set this small, it’s hard to draw conclusions. Such as the % of returning visitors – which could be heavily influenced by me.

screen-shot-2016-10-11-at-21-41-17What it does give me is a starting number to work from – 115.

But even with a data set this more you can still get insights into where people are reading from.


So what is the plan for the next month?

Firstly produce more content. As mentioned many times before the key is to produce content regularly.

Secondly, I will produce a more strategic plan, so I know what content I’m producing and when.

Finally, I will also test out facebook ads and boost one of my posts to see what effect that has on my getting views.

I hope you’ve found this blog post useful. Let me know in the comments below what you’re hoping to achieve in the next month.


How to Lead a Successful Team

On your journey to the top, at some point, you’re going to need to recruit team members to help achieve the strategic goals. Despite what you may think, you cannot, and I believe you should not do everything.

As a leader, you’ll need to successfully lead these team members. In this blog post, we look at some of the strategies you could use to lead a successful team.

  1. Find individuals that are right for the roles.

It all starts with recruiting the right individuals and placing them into the right roles. This involves making sure that their talents are utilised and put to best use. Placing people into roles that don’t fit could lead to demotivation and cause team disruptions.

  1. Set Clear goals for the team and individuals

Teams and individuals need to know where they are headed. As a leader, it is up to you to steer them in the right direction and ensure goals and objectives are clearly defined.

By having clear goals, people will know what they are working towards and will feel motivated as they understand the part they are playing.

In contrast by not having clear objectives, individuals could become demoralised and feel unappreciated if they don’t see the value of the work they do.

  1. Show your commitment to the goals

The team will expect you to be on the same side as them. Therefore you will also need to show your commitment to achieving the goals.

If the team sense that you’re not working towards the goals, they will also lose interest, which could slow down progress.

  1. Encourage others to take responsibility

Great leaders encourage their team members to take responsibility in ensuring goals and outcomes are achieved. Team members feel empowered to make decisions and have ownership for their contribution to the success of the goals.

  1. Build & Maintain team motivation

A successful team is one that is highly motivated to achieve the desired outcomes and goals, and it is down to the leader to ensure everyone is motivated. This can be achieved bringing the team together to review progress, recognise the success the team delivers as well as communicating information in a timely manner

  1. Get to Know you team

When leading a team it is important to get to know your team members. You’ll need to understand what motivates them to ensure you can keep them motivated. You’ll also need to understand how they like to be managed.

A good leader can adapt their management style to each individual and situation.

  1. Create a buzz

A successful team is one where there is lots of excitement, lots of energy and team members are enthusiastic.

A part of the leader’s role is to ensure energy and enthusiasm levels are kept high. Remind people of vision, and celebrate achievements.

    1. Have some fun

Finally, have some fun. A successful team is what that can have a laugh and inject some fun into the proceedings. This might be an outing, such as going out a meal or a few drinks. Or it could be having some fun in the office, such as fancy dress day, cake days or even the corporate barbeque.

Work can often be seen as this grey corporate image; who says you can’t inject some fun into it every now and again.

Why you should ignore your competition when starting out

A photo by Maico Amorim.

When starting out, it can be best to ignore what your competition is doing altogether. Trying to track what others are doing or to keep up with trends can be exhausting.

Therefore it’s best to ignore it and focus on your own efforts.

Here are my top 3 reasons why ignoring the competition might be beneficial to your startup efforts.

1. Detracts from Individuality & Creativity

Following the competition may seem like a good idea, but in doing so you end risking losing your individuality and creativity.

You might be tempted to copy some of the ideas that the competition is implementing. However, if you are just starting out, or if this is your first project, the chances are your implementation skills will be a little underdeveloped. The risk here is that you may implement something badly.

People follow and read what you say, because of you. You’re unique. Your opinions are yours, and what you’ve formed. By following the competition you views may become what you competition are saying.

The end result could be that your creativity may also become stifled.

No one likes a copy.

2. Competition is at a different stage to you

Following a competitor may also be misleading. You may think someone is your competitor when actually they’re not.

For example, you may have written a book. And you may say your competition is Stephen King or J.K Rowling. So you start looking at the tips and tricks they use to market their books.

How can you compare yourself to such established competitors?

These guys have been in the game a lot longer than you have. Their campaigns are aimed at the masses. They have bigger budgets, teams, and experiences to draw upon.

Your focus needs to be on getting the first customer, or in this case a reader and growing that customer base.

Once you’ve got a customer base launching your second product will be easier, as you’ll have some built-in loyalty and a fan base.

When starting out your company you are in a completely different position to more established companies. You’re in survival mode, trying to make end meets and establish a viable cash flow stream.

Establish companies already have these basics in place, so make you’re focussed on the right things

3. Feeling overwhelmed

Another reason to avoid following the competition and following your own path is to avoid the overwhelming dread.

It’s very tempting to see what others are doing and try to follow.

When you’re starting out there’s so much to do the last thing you want to do is to add more to your list. It’s very easy to become distracted and eventually you will just burn you out. Which in turn makes you feel overwhelmed and could result in a downward spiral where you start to achieve less.

Online Marketing is a good example. Many of the so-called pros use a tool called infusion soft. However, many people have reported that the learning curve for this product is steep. Therefore if you’re new to the online marketing world you might want to look at something simpler such as convertkit.

Learning the theory is something different to putting into practice. So you may read all the theory about online marketing but I recommend no matter what you do learn, master the basics before going on to something more complicated.

Let me know in the comments below, if you believe you should ignore the competition when starting out.

Are Your Meetings Ineffective?


Ineffective meetings are a pain in the backside. They waste time, money and energy and can often result in a loss of productivity. This end result detracts from business success and growth.

The reasons for poor meetings can be endless. Here we explore some of the common reasons why meetings can be ineffective.

1) No Agenda set

It has to be one of the most common reasons while meetings fail – no agenda has been set. You’ve been invited to a meeting with a generic subject title but no agenda has been issued.

The outcome ? Everyone talks about different points or they go off topic and nothing gets achieved. The meeting turns out to be completely pointless.

2) Meetings fail to start and finish on time

Meetings can become ineffective if that can’t stick to the allocated times. By not starting on time people can become distracted or lose interest before the meeting has even begun.

By failing to finish on time may result in some points in the meeting being rushed or ignored completely.

Attendees of your meeting may have other things to do, other meetings to attend to. Therefore holding them up will leave them disengaged, as mentally they’re focussing on where they should be.

3) Others don’t need to be there

A classic of meetings is to either invite everyone or not to invite the key people. Again leading to an ineffective meeting.

By not having the right people there you could agree on an action plan or the next steps for someone else to overrule it. Rendering your meeting useless.

You could also have people in the meeting that have don’t really need to be there. This could also contribute to a negative outcome. This band of people could become disinterested and not focus on the meeting in hand.

Other attendees may pick up on this behaviour and themselves lose interest and struggle to stay focused. Again leading to an ineffective meeting

4) Interruptions

Interruptions can also lead to ineffective meetings. Being interrupted can cause the speaker to lose his or her train of thought and others can become distracted and forget what was being said. Constant interruptions can lead to a lack of progress because the focus is elsewhere and not on the meeting in hand.

It is always best to try and limit the interruptions. This could be done by booking a room, so other people are aware that a meeting is taking place. Ensure phones are kept on silent and allow a policy that allows people to speak without being interrupted.

5) No actions agreed or noted

You may have spent all that time preparing your meeting, people have attended, but following the meeting no actions have been assigned to anyone or the points raised in the meeting noted.

Once a meeting is wrapping up the actions should be agreed and reiterated and also document. Therefore in future meetings, you can see the progress being made


Let me know in the comments below how you think successful meetings should be run



The Difference Between Motivation & Inspiration

Motivation and inspiration are two words that are becoming increasingly interchangeable. Most people believe they have the same meaning, however, I don’t believe this to be true.


A quick google search defines motivation as “a reason for acting of behaving in a particular way”.

We can apply this to a number of different situations. I might feel motivated to exercise because it makes me feel good, or I could be motivated to cook because I feel hungry.

When we hear about motivation we seem to need it to force us to do something, something that we might not necessarily want to do.

Left to my own devices, I don’t want to run because sitting and watching TV is far easier. I don’t really want to cook because it’s time-consuming. I can always find something else to do that’s easier than what I need to do.

Motivation is all about doing something we might not be interested in, or don’t really care about therefore we need that motivation to help us overcome the mental hurdles we put in the way.

A photo by Joshua Earle.


Inspiration, on the other hand, is defined as “the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative”

Again we can apply this to situations where we might listen to someone’s story about how they ran a marathon making us feel inspired to do the same.

Or we might get inspired to start our own business by hearing how other business owners created theirs.

I’ll often watch a cookery show and feel inspired to cook. It never turns out the same but I feel empowered to cook.


The key to the differences between motivation and inspiration are that motivation requires something external to force us to action. Inspiration comes from with. Yes, there might be an external trigger, watching a TV show or listening to a podcast, but feeling inspired comes from within. It’s the feeling of alignment, you are called to act.

This is not to say that you need motivation for negative tasks, and inspiration is all about the positives. Both feelings can be displayed.

Let’s say for example you feel inspired to write a book. You’ve heard an interview with someone who is making a lot of money writing books. You feel inspired to write your own. On day one you put a plan together, day two you write your first chapter. The third day you struggle. The inspiration has gone and you now need to motivate yourself to carry on.

It can be difficult to sustain the feeling of inspiration for a long time. Similarly, it can also be tough to motivate oneself for a period of a long time.

If you can master this problem you’ll be able to succeed in anything you want to do. Because the minute you can’t motivate yourself it’s nemesis procrastination will creep in and detract from any progress being made.


Let me know in the comments below what inspires you, and how you keep the motivation going.

The Misconceptions of Entrepreneurship


Becoming an entrepreneur is one of those things that’s surrounded in mystery. Everyone’s got their own view.

“You’ve got to invest lots of money”. “Most businesses fail”. “It’s a difficult path and you need to get lucky”. “You need to have a good idea”. And the list of opinions goes on.

When you talk to people about entrepreneurship, the image of a swashbuckling Richard Branson or ultra-successful people like Mark Zuckerberg, Steve Jobs or Bill Gates comes to mind.

Therefore our path of becoming an entrepreneur can become tainted, and often misleading.

Here I try to dispel some of the myths.

1) Great Businesses are created by Individuals

While it can be true that individuals start a company, to become a really great business involves creating and building teams.

If you look at Apple, yes Steve Jobs was the front man and lead the company, but could he build it into a billion-dollar company all by himself?

No. He needed a great creative team that could create awesome problems and build great infrastructure

Therefore its teams that build companies and usually the bigger the team the more likely you are being successful.

Likewise have more than one co-founder will also increase your odds of success.

2) All Entrepreneurs are charismatic

Again when we think of entrepreneurs we tend to think of these charismatic individuals. However a successful entrepreneur needs to have many skills, with being effective communicators, recruiters and sales skills at the top of the list.

All leaders need to be able to communicate the direction they are going in to its staff. Likewise when building your team, you will want to recruit team members that will drive your vision forward. And of course sale skills are vitally important in order to attract customers and their cash to your business.

Likewise, when building your team, you will want to recruit team members that will drive your vision forward. And of course, sale skills are vitally important in order to attract customers and their cash to your business.

However above all entrepreneurs need to be honest and trustworthy. People will deter from you if you appear fake or false, therefore be authentic. This will be an invaluable trait to display to you staff and customers.

3) Entrepreneurs are born with the skills required

Another misconception, is that we often see these superstar entrepreneurs and we justify their success by saying they were born with the skills or lucky to get their break.

When in fact a lot of the skills required can be taught and obtained. Skills such as people management, sale skills, implementation, and project management can all be taught. Or you could delegate these skills and responsibilities out.

Another useful skill is utilising resources better than others, entrepreneurs look for opportunities

4) I need a great idea

One of the biggest misconceptions is that you need a great idea in order to become a successful entrepreneur. This is simply not true.

Say you want to open a restaurant. Nothing wrong with that, but it’s not unique.

If you don’t have any idea to start with, then start asking questions. What would you like to do? How could you improve something? What type of customers would you like to serve?

If you start listing and brainstorming you’ll soon have an answer.

The key is start.

Let me know in the comments below what misconceptions you’ve come across on your entrepreneurship journey.


[Podcast Review] the $100 MBA Show


After listening to an episode of the $100 MBA show and embarking on a 21-day writing challenge – which you can read about here –  I feel it’s only fair that I do a review on the podcast 100$ MBA show.

Easy to Understand Business Lessons

The $100 MBA show is a podcast aimed at those in business and entrepreneurship or those looking to get into it. Omar Zenhom, the host delivers business lessons that last only 10 minutes long.

This is ideal for those people like me, who can easily lose attention or feel overwhelmed. In 10 minutes you actually feel like you’ve learnt something and something that you can implement. There’s no overcomplicated jargon or “fluff” to fill the air time – it’s short, to the point and effective.

Other podcasts offer an interview format between a guest and a host. While these podcasts may offer lots of value it can sometimes be difficult to capture everything or stay focused.

The host or guest go off on different tangents, and it can be easy for the listener to become distracted.

Occasionally you get some podcasts where some guests are just more interesting than others. On the $100 MBA show, you’ve got the consistency in every episode

The show is daily as well, so the wait for your next nugget of business advice isn’t too long.

You can find podcasts on how to look after your email list (717), customer service, sales advice, recruiting, the list goes on.

In fact, if there is an area where you would like some business advice, I recommend you check out the website. Here you can search the directory to find a podcast that might help.

Special Episodes

The normal format of the podcast is roughly 10 minutes of business advice. However every week there are special episodes that are either a must read episode or a guest teacher episode

A must read episode is an episode where Omar delivers a book review and summarises some key points from the book. All business related.

For those who just love to consume business education, this gives you an opportunity to get someone else’s view on a book before making that book purchase.

A guest teacher episode is where Omar hands over the reins to a fellow entrepreneur who dispenses some expertise they’ve gain during their entrepreneurial ventures.

Finally, another type of episode is the Q&A weekends. For me, this shows how much Omar cares about his podcast, business, and listeners. In these episodes (on the weekends believe it or not) he answers listener’s questions.

Free Ride Fridays

The $100MBA show is a podcast that supplements Omar’s other business the $100MBA an online business education course for surprisingly – $100.

However every Friday there is a chance that one listener can win access to this vault of information for free.

This is because if you leave an iTunes review for the show, you’re automatically entered to win.

As a side note, I think this shows the business mind at work. Similar to Amazon reviews, iTunes review rank the show in a chart. Therefore this is a potential win-win – the listener gets a chance to win a prize and show gets a review.

I thoroughly recommend the $100MBA show, as a useful resource for any aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners.

You can check out the $100 MBA by clicking here

the 21 day writing challenge

Join me for the 21 day writing challenge. Get the rules here.

So there I was listening to one of my favourite podcasts on business and entrepreneurship, the 100$MBA Show, and the host, Omar Zenhom challenged his listeners.

The challenge is to write at least 500 words for 21 days as well as publishing your blog posts daily.

However, there are two caveats.

The first is to write your first 5 blog posts, and then publish them daily while you write the next 5. So your first blog post will be posted on day 6.

The second is that you can take two days off a week. So you are only writing for 5 days, ending up with 15 blog posts in total.

To kick things off it is highly recommended that you list out your 15 blog posts before you start.

I’d also add that as you list out you blog topics, that you write a few key words or ideas next to it so it acts as a prompt when you get round to writing that blog post.

There are a number of reasons why to undertake this challenge.

The first reason is for traffic. People are on the internet searching for answers, solutions to problems or ideas. As a blogger, we need to write the responses to these questions, so people can find us.

The more content we produce the more likely someone is to find our site. The more blog posts you create the more likely you are to show up in searches or be linked to.

That’s the theory. The more you put out there the more chance people have of finding you. Sounds relatively straightforward so far.

Join me for the 21 day writing challenge. Get the rules here.

The second reason is to be consistent. Google recognises when a site is more reliable and more consistent in its output.

Therefore you will increase your chances of being found by search engines by being consistent. Also being consistent increases success not matter what you do, from exercising to building a business, consistency is the key.

The third reason to undertake the challenge is that it allows you to practise the art of writing and put it out there.

Like most things, we wake up and decide to do something, be it a writer or start a business. But it takes time, it takes effort and it takes a lot of mistakes.

When you first start out you need to find your own style, and the only way to do that is to put it out there.

Finally, the fourth reason is to undertake this to challenge, is because it’s a challenge. Test yourself and see if you can rise to the challenge. Prove to yourself that you can do it, be committed and take action daily.

If you want to listen to the original podcast episode – episode 747- by Omar from 100$ MBA show then you can do so by clicking here. Like all episodes of this podcast, the episode is short – only 15 minutes long (ideal if you’re like me with a short attention span) but packed with tons of great value.

Join me for the 21 day writing challenge. Get the rules here.

Chasing the Passive Income Dream

Everyone seems to be chasing the ideal lifestyle where you’re making money but not chained to normal 9-5 work regime. Instead of the traditional trading time for money, systems are built that allows you to earn money without you being physically present.

Where trading time for money works on the basis that if you don’t work you don’t get paid, passive income involves working hard now to create systems that provide revenue streams that don’t involve working the required hours.

The internet has seen a rise in people taking the opportunity to create a passive income business.

The types of systems you may want to build that create passive income may include monetizing a blog, a podcast, an online course or even an eBook.

Creating a business that generates passive income allows the owner more flexibility and more time to do other things that they normally wouldn’t do in a regular job.

For example, you may make enough passive income to quit your day job and as a result, you can spend more time with the family. You’re also location independent in other words live where you want.

In fact, in the book the 4 hour work week, author Tim Ferris recommends leveraging living in a different country to that your earn your income in e.g. if you are earning USDs, it might be favourable to living in Asia.

However one of the biggest misconceptions is that building a passive income business is easy, and it’s all laptops on beaches. This is not the case.

Creating a passive income involves some serious graft and a lot of hustle. Your asset or avenue that will provide passive income takes a time to bear fruition. The reason being is that everyone starts from zero.

You have zero customers to begin with, and it’s telling the world your product is here that takes the time. Blogs take a time to get traction, getting a book sale (not friends or family) takes time. Therefore you have to be prepared for the long haul. Creating passive income isn’t a get-rich-quick-scheme.

If you are interested in passive income then the place to start would be to check out Here creator Pat Flynn has created tons of information which you can review through his blog posts and his podcast. Pat describes passive income as “work hard now, so you can reap the benefits later”.

Also, check out Pat’s income statements – here he shows you how he makes his money. This is a great insight for people who want to create their own systems.

As already mentioned, generating passive income doesn’t happen overnight, but it is possible. The better you serve your audience the better your results will be. You need to provide content that offers value, solve problems and pain points.

Let me know your thoughts in the comments. Are you creating a passive income business and what strategies are you using?

Do you consider yourself a good listener?

Click Here for My “Easy to Implement Listening Tips”

These days, listening is becoming a harder skill to master. With so much noise in the world, we’re becoming accustomed to tune out the noise. Making us become ignorant to what’s going on around us and only paying attention to what we really need to.

This is bad news.

Listening is essential in everyday life. We need to understand instructions and gain clarity.

Listening is a skill that we need to remaster. Can you recall a time when you weren’t being listened too? How did it make you feel? It sucks right?

I’ve been there too. I believe I’m having a conversation with someone and it’s like they’re not in the room, not interested in what I’ve got to say.

Or someone has been talking to me and I’ve drifted off and then missed the key point of the conversation – whoops!!

You can often tell when someone isn’t listening effectively and here are a few reasons why that behaviour might be displayed.

  • The listeners head is filled with other things.
  • They may not have time to listen.
  • The listener thinks they know better than the speaker.
  • The listener might be thinking about what they are going to say next.
  • Being bored by the speaker could also be another reason.
  • Allowing distractions and interruptions will also contribute to ineffective listening.
  • Another reason is the listener may have already made assumptions or decisions about the subject the speaker is talking about.

The list is by no means definitive but highlights some behaviours to ineffective listening. And let’s be honest we’re all guilty of displaying one if not all traits at some point in our lives.

So if you feel like you’re not a great listener and want to improve here are some helpful tips that you could benefit from.

1) Face the other person.

2) Keep comfortable eye contact.

3) Acknowledge what has been said.

4) Avoid disturbing behaviours – like fidgeting or checking your phone.

5) Complete the listening loop by making short summaries.

6) Don’t prejudge the talker.

7) Allow time to have a proper discussion.

8) Show empathy.

9) Be understanding and patient.

10) Don’t be quick to react.

11) Stop thinking too much about what to say.

No matter who you are talking, be it a work colleague, friend, partner, customer improving your listening skills is essential to provide a level of understanding and respect

Not understanding someone could lead to confusion, missed opportunities or even a loss of a customer. Gain clarity by listening.

If you can implement a couple of these tips you’ll become a better listener and in doing so the talker will feel like they’ve got their points across and ultimately improving understanding.

We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak
We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak – Epictetus


Click Here for My “Easy to Implement Listening Tips”

Let me know in the comments below of a time when you felt like you weren’t be listened too.