A Heart Attack Costs More Than A Gym Membership

Posted by JasonBlumer on May 5, 2015 in

Many struggle to pay for expensive gym memberships (like Crossfit), and make time for exercise. But taking care of yourself is a lot less expensive than having a heart attack or other major health issuelater on. Of course, just because you don't exercise doesn't mean you'll have a heart attack. I'm just making the comparison of a short-term decision to get a long term outcome. Many fruitful short term decisions cost money, but the long term expense is even bigger if you neglect the short term decision now. I believe these are the hardest choices we make in business too - "what should I do in the short term that will bring the greatest long term outcomes?" I believe these are difficult decisions because we typically want the most immediate outcome, for the least amount of investment. Furthermore, since we can't see what the future holds, it's hard…

Majoring on the Minors

Posted by JasonBlumer on Apr 28, 2015 in

One of my jobs as a coach to design/marketing agencies is to improve their focus. There are so many things happening when you are building a business. As the owner, you are responsible for them all. It's easy to become flummoxed by the sheer number of tasks/issues/problems/initiatives to move your agency forward.As a general principle, I find many owners major on the minors. That is, they make small things a big part of their focus. They allow the team to reverse-delegate work back to them, take on minor issues in the daily scrum, and worry about how to solve small things. This leaves no energy or attention to solve the bigger (harder) problems found in major issues.See the matrix above dissecting the major and minor issues as they relate to long term and immediate needs of the agency. Can you fill this out for…

Narrow Your Focus As You Get Older

Posted by JasonBlumer on Apr 24, 2015 in

I'm learning that all of life is an attempt to narrow what you do, and focus only on what your unique ability is. I've tried to draw this out in the image above. At the age of 20, life is open to you. You could choose many paths. Even after you may have graduated from higher education with a college degree, you still may not do anything related to what your degree is in. In my own life, the ages of 20 to 40 were a pursuit of establishing myself, learning what I am good at, and committing to that.Now in my 40s, I feel it is my responsibility to seriously narrow what I do. To me, this means narrowing who I spend time with, narrowing the types of books I read, narrowing the clients I will take on, and narrowing the commitments of my time. I think I will be at…

Abundance vs. Scarcity

Posted by JasonBlumer on Apr 21, 2015 in

I love listening to Dan Sullivan and Joe Polish on their 10x Talk podcast. I'm catching up on some episodes and I'm in the middle of Scarcity vs. Abundance. Such an eye opener for this world! As Dan Sullivan discusses, our world is hyper focused on a future of limited resources, scarce resources, and decreasing resources. The news and Hollywood constantly pump our minds with a world of scarcity.On the Scarcity vs. Abundance podcast episode, Dan Sullivan states that entrepreneurs with a scarcity mindset fall into a false world view of scarcity when they (wrongly) believe in 3 things:1. Zero sum - I have and you don't. If I get something, it means I got it from you.2. Depletion - Resources are dwindling. The future will have less of what we have now.3. Unfairness - Since you have and I don't, it is unfair.And if you believe in these…

What is Workers Compensation Insurance?

Posted by JasonBlumer on Apr 3, 2015 in Workers Comp

Have you heard of workers comp? If you are an employer, I hope you've reviewed your state's requirements for workers comp coverage on your employees. Workers Comp is insurance that a company buys that will cover their employees if they are injured on the job, and possibly provide wage replacement payments in case they can't earn a wage. Since the employer is covering the employee, it is typically true that the employee is agreeing not to sue their employer for negligence. Everyone is protected.Workers Comp is like any business insurance where the business owner will pay an insurance premium based upon the types of workers they have, and how much they are paying workers in wages. If you employ designers sitting at a desk, your premiums will be lower than if you employ forklift operators. The insurance premium will be, in part, based on the risk the employee is…

Do The Opposite Blog Post Series: Break The Rules

Posted by JasonBlumer on Mar 31, 2015 in

This original blog post series started here. This is the last post in this series.One of my recent favorite authors is Dr. Jules Goddard. He wrote Uncommon Sense, Common Nonsense and it is a favorite contrarian business book of mine. One major insight I have gained from Goddard's work is that business is more of a game to be won than a skill to be improved. He says so right here in this Youtube video.I used to think there were rules to how we ran businesses. Follow those rules and you'll be okay. I used to feel there was some unknown pressure on me to play by the rules of my profession. But, as Dr. Goddard says many times in his book, that path is for losers.The landscape of business is changing - business strategy is now more like the strategy that a great football coach employs…

The Businessology Show: Exploring Business Models

Posted by JasonBlumer on Mar 24, 2015 in

By Jennifer BlumerRecently Jason Blumer andDan Mall launchedSeason 3 of The Businessology Show. In this episode, they discuss their business models and their pros and cons. While I love the honesty about the struggles Jason and Dan face in their chosen business models, I think there are a couple of big takeaways about business models in general.1. It’s important to be intentional about your business model. But first you must know with crystal clarity what you are selling. (Dan learned that he is NOT selling low overhead, but results/high quality. This affected his business model and positioning.)2. Business models affect EVERYTHING. Your business model will determine who you hire - and whether or not you hire employees or contractors, how you price, how customers pay, where and when you do your work, how you conduct meetings, and more.3. Intentional and strategic business owners will be co…

Profit Comes From Risk

Posted by JasonBlumer on Mar 19, 2015 in

Recently a coaching client of mine asked me to help him through a prosposal process. He was hoping to offer new value to a new client - and thus, make a greater profit than on previous work. Below is a part of an email discussion we had about my role as well as a risk/reward discussion.Profit comes from risk. As business owners, you have to take risks. If I help you with proposals, then we are both taking risks.The risk you take:If you get the client, I have a minimum I want to make, but I hope to make more much higher. I want to be paid a minimumno matter what. Your incentive is to price high enough to justify paying me.The risk I take:I help you with the proposal, and if you don't get it, I get nothing. My incentive is…

Leadership Lessons from my Coach, Ed Batista

Posted by JasonBlumer on Mar 13, 2015 in

My coach, Ed Batista, rarely writes about himself or his abilities to coach, or his past experiences. He is typically writing about others he has learned from. And he passes this writing on to me, which I highly value. One of his most recent posts is an example of this, as he writes about a leader he once took a Stanford MBA class from named Joel Peterson.Ed's post, Joel Peterson's Last Lecture, 15 Years Later, has some gold in it. Of the 30 points Ed makes in his blog post, here are the 3 biggest takeaways for me:#6 Learn to Work With People - as a firm owner, it's not mainly about getting tax returns done and reviewed, but about the journey of helping a team believe in themselves while we care for fearful people. I'm learning that people are at the heart of our work.#21 Hire for Brains and Heart -…

Stop Reimbursing Employees for Their Health Insurance Premiums

Posted by JasonBlumer on Mar 11, 2015 in

Hey small business owner, itlooks like you need to stop reimbursing your employees for their own personal health insurance premiums. I know, you sure are nice to do that, and it's a perk, right? But it seems that this is a violation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Here's the skinny...If you have OVER 50 full time equivalent employees, then you are subject to the ACA, also known as Obamacare. You are an Applicable Large Employer. Yikes. We won't even take you as a client because of the pain-in-the-butt ramifications large employers will have to abide by. Basically, if you are an Applicable Large Employer, you have to offer your employees a group health plan.If you have UNDER 50 full time equivalent employees in your company, then you are technically not subject to the ACA. Yeah. But some small employers have been unknowingly making themselves subject to the…