Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Blessings of 2015

Like many of you, I am working to wrap up projects from 2015, while getting ready for the new year.  I am excited about some of the things we have accomplished in 2015.  So before I announce my goals for 2016 here on this blog, I thought I would share some things I am happy about from this year.

Freshman/Senior:  It's crazy to think that I currently have a Freshman and a Senior in the house...and neither are me.  Skylar and Jade are growing up.  And though there are certainly stressful moments in a house with two teenage ladies, I am elated about where we/they are heading.

Hasseman Marketing Grew:  We had a good year at Hasseman Marketing.  We certainly achieved our growth goals for 2015 and I hope it positions us for future growth as well.  So glad we have a team of folks that really care.  Thanks to Libbie, Dustin, Amie Josh, Christine (mom), Jeff, Chris...and of course my bride Amy.

Content Creation:  2015 was a good year for us to continue the hustle on content.  We continued our weekly web show Delivering Marketing Joy.  I am very proud of this piece of content and the value it provides for viewers.  We have also kept up the Weekly Words...consistently. 

I am very excited about a new piece of content that will be coming soon.  But you will have to wait on that...for now.

Growth:  I am proud of reading 50 books in 2015.  It's always great to reach a goal...but mostly excited about the learning and growth it represents.  Here is that list if you are interested.

I am also excited for other blessings that are not measurable.  Great family.  Health.  Abundance.  I wish the same for you.  Here's to a great 2016!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

#50Books in the Bag

I did it!

My goal to read 50 books has been a daunting one.  But I must say, it has been HUGELY impactful to me as a business owner and a person.  People have asked me all year, "Where do you find the time?"  That is one of the lessons I have learned.  We all have time.  Maybe you don't have time to read 50 books (maybe).  But you probably have time to read more than you do.  It's your call.

Here is my completed list of 50 Books! 

Start by Jon Acuff:  Great book to start off the new year!  I like Jon's style and it's a great motivator if you want to get yourself going!  Love the line "Punch Fear in the Face!"  (Side note:  Since I wrote this I saw Jon speak...awesome.  If you get a chance you should see him!  He has a new book called Do Over!)

Switch on Your Brain by Dr. Caroline Leaf:  Not a bad read.  Ties bible lessons to science on happiness and productivity.

The Self Made Billionaire Effect by John Sviokla and Mitch Cohen:  Not bad but probably my least favorite so far this year.

Transform by Jeff Haden:  Really liked this one.  Lots of Jeff's best stuff in one place.  Great book to read one chapter per day.  Jeff was also nice enough to spend some time on my web show! 

Profit First by Mike Michalowicz:  Love this one!  Several times I felt like he was following me around!  :)  Highly recommend this one for anyone who has a business.  This has really changed the way we account in ours.  Mike was also a great guest on Delivering Marketing Joy! 

What To Do When It's Your Turn by Seth Godin:  Really good reminder that it's always our turn to step up and make a difference.  Quick read...great one to share!

Scaling Up by Verne Harnish:  This was a good one but I should not have gotten it on audio.  This would have been better as an actual book.  Great things to make me think...but would have gotten more out of it if I could see the references.

Pumpkin Plan: by Mike Michalowicz.  This is another great book for those trying to figure out how to grow your business.  "The riches are in the niches."  I really like Mike's books.  Recommend for sure!

Mastering Monday:  by John Beckett.  This is a good reminder that Monday does not stink if your work (and your life) have a purpose.

New Rules of Sales and Service:  by David Meerman Scott.  If you are not a believer that you can make a huge difference in your business by "giving first," read this one.  He lays out a great case for being a content leader.

The Automatic Customer:  by John Warrillow.  This is another game changer for me this year.  This one opened my mind that nearly any business can be a "subscription business."  I am getting ready to launch a new business and the idea came from this book!  Love it.

Duct Tape Selling: by John Jantsch.  The beginning of this and New Rules were similar.  But I liked that the 2nd half dug into the "how" a little more.  Good one.

Invisible Selling Machine: by Ryan Deiss.  It's a quick read for sure.  But if you want to become a real pro in email marketing, this has some weight.  I use Infusionsoft and I am going through this book to make sure I am setting sequences better.

Train Your Brain For Success: by Roger Seip.  Love the tips in here on how to read faster and remember more.  Once you get through that, good tips on being more successful in life.

SCRUM:  The Art of Doing Twice The Work in Half the Time:  by Jeff Sutherland.  Scrum is a concept created in software development.  If you are getting ready to create a new company or launch a new project, this is a great read first!

Awesomely Simple: by John Spence.  So many times in business, we over think.  We over analyze.  In reality, business success is simple.  This book highlights the down and dirty truth about success in business.

The Undefeated Mind: by Alex Lickerman.  If you are struggling with any issues in life, this book is a great resource to show you how to be resilient.  Dark at times...but shows real life examples on how to overcome.

The Power of Money: Several Speakers.  I thought this was a book but was actually a compilation of teachers.  There are always nuggets of wisdom in any book (and this one had them) but it was not what I expected.

Mastermind Dinners: Jayson Gaignard.  This one was definitely short and sweet.  Jason takes networking to the next level by curating Mastermind Dinners.  Interesting concept for sure.

Nail It Then Scale It: by Nathan Furr and Paul Ahlstrom.  Real similarities to the Scrum concept.  The book says the way we create businesses is broken.  I enjoyed this one.  It's on my mind as I ready to launch a new project.

It Takes More Than A Big Smile, A Good Idea and a Twitter Account: by Wes Schaeffer.  This has some real nuggets.  It's a compilation of blog posts from Wes.  Great for sales professionals and sales managers.

Procrastinate on Purpose: by Rory Vaden.  I really liked this one.  Good for anyone that is trying to "manage time."  Not easy!  Good insights in this one!  

The Talent Code: by Daniel Coyle.  Coyle studies the "talent hotbeds" of the world and discovers that the secret is not in their DNA, it's in a chemical inside our brains called Myelin.  Really interesting stuff about how to get better at ANYTHING.  Really.

The 10X Rule:  by Grant Cardone.  I had actually read this before.  But this is a no nonsense kick in the pants kind of book.  Need a reminder to work harder?  Here it is.  You are not thinking big enough or working hard enough.  Grant reminds you!

The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur by Mike Michaelowicz.  This is a no nonsense book for people interested in being an entrepreneur.  

The Art of Social Media: by Guy Kawasaki and Peg Fitzpatrick.  Want to know some real no b.s. tips and tactics for doing social better?  This is a good one and a quick read.  Recommended.

Bold:  by Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler.  I will say that this one started slow.  But I was really glad I stuck with this one because that last 2/3 of the book really got me thinking!  I love that!

Creativity, Inc.  by Ed Catmull.  From the very beginnings of his career to running Pixar and Disney Animation.  Some great lessons here, especially on managing creative companies.

 Relentless (From Good to Great to Unstoppable) by Tim Grover.  Not bad.  Good if you need a kick in the pants and motivation.  Got a bit repetitive after a while.  But some interesting stories from the trainer of Kobe and Michael!

Difference by Bernadette Jiwa.  Short and sweet.  I liked this one.  Reminds you that if you want to be a succesful business today...you need to strive to make a difference!

The Innovators by Walter Isaacson.  This one was a struggle for me.  I bought it thinking it was a business book...but it was history.  Great if you are into that...but not what I was expecting or looking for.

The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz.  I liked this one (though sometimes it was a little dark).  But it talked about the many challenges a CEO faces...with no sugar coating.  Good insights into growing a company.

Brandscaping by Andrew Davis:  This was an interesting take on how to grow your business by creating great brand partnerships.  Interesting for sure.

 Everybody Writes by Ann Handley.  If you want to write better, but want a book that is read-able, I think this might be a good solution for you.  We are all creating content.  Ann just gives us ways to do it better.

I WILL by Thomas Rainer:  Very simple concept for Christians that remind us if we want a better church, we need to be a part of the solution.

The Virgin Way by Richard Branson.  Branson is such a cool cat.  He spins a great yarn about his experiences, and I think, gives great insights along the way if you are paying attention.  What a great entrepreneur to look up too!

The Real Life MBA by Jack and Suzy Welch.  This one was very tactical.  I liked it because it dug right in.  I changed my company's goal structure based on this book.

The Purple Goldfish by Stan Phelps.  If you want your company to stand out, you can do it with that Little Something Extra.  Stan does a great job with examples that everyone in your company can relate too.

If You're Not First, You're Last by Grant Cardone.  Grant Cardone is the perfect antidote for apathy.  I think this is a great kind of book to listen to each morning to give you a kick in the pants.  You have to go get it!  Grant reminds you!

Learn Spanish with Paul Noble:  This audio book was a total departure...but really interesting.  Great way to learn.  I am hardly fluent...but better!

Make Me by Lee Child:  I know.  I know.  This is the one fiction book of the bunch!  I promised to read things that made me better.  Reading these make me want to be like Jack Reacher...and that is better.  :)

So You Want to Start a Brewery by Tony Magee.  This was a really interesting book that tells the tale of how Lagunitas Brewery got started...and succeeded.  It was weird, interesting and cool.  I have a feeling Tony is too.

The Sales Acceleration Formula by Mark Roberge.  If you want to create a sales process born in today's business environment, this book is a good place to start.  Great, process driven sales book.

Customer Development for Entrepreneurs by Mike Fishbein.  I think this book would be really good for someone who has never started a company, but wants to.  Great short read for beginning entrepreneurs.  Not great for experienced business builders.

Content Inc. by Joe Pulizzi.  I really liked this (and not because Joe was nice enough to do my show!).  All joking aside, Joe is the master at Content Marketing and he shares his playbook here.  I highly recommend this one.

The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy.  This is one that I would like my daughters to read.  The concepts of the Compound Effect are simple...but powerful.  Oh, and I said simple...not easy.  I liked this one.

How To Brew by John Palmer.  If you want to learn a LOT about homebrewing, and how to do it right, then this is a great book for you.  Hopefully the beer I brew will be better for it!  :)

12 Week Year by Brian P. Moran.  This is a great book to read (or listen to) if you want to take your goals and your activity to the next level.  Really like this one.

Living with a Seal by Jesse Itzler.  This one was fun!  Dustin Haywood turned me on to this one and I am glad he did.  The big lesson?  When you think you have pushed yourself as far as you can go...you can go farther.   I listened to this one and I think it would be better this way. 

Ask by Ryan Levesque.  Interesting concept about building products around what your customers need...and letting them tell you.

That is 50!  I really got a lot out of this exercise.  I will continue to aggressively read in 2016...just not sure if I will set the goal at 50 or not.  Either way, I am blown away by how this has helped me grow.  If you have any questions about any of the books from this list, let me know.  I will give you my opinions!

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Taking it to the Next Level

2015 has been a really good year.  I have been blessed.

I am pleased that I have pushed myself to learn (reading 50 books) and continued to grow our business.  In addition, I am excited about the content that we have continued to create.  We have kept up our weekly Delivering Marketing Joy show...and our Weekly Words.  I am proud we have kept it going each week!

I look for 2016 to be a great year!  I am finalizing my goals for the year, but I look to take it to the "next level."  What does that mean?  Be on the lookout for content daily.  More on this soon.  But I am excited to get this project rolling...and I will let you know soon!

What are your plans for 2016?  How are you going to take it to the next level?  Let me know!

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Friday, December 18, 2015

Just Bad Luck?

Chances are, you have someone (or multiple someones) in your life that "bad things always happen to."  The key word here is "always."  No matter where they go, trouble follows.  They have drama in their life.  They know the local police by name (or vice versa). 

Quick gut check:  Do you really think that's just "bad luck?"

Monday, December 14, 2015

Why You Slept Poorly

I didn't sleep well last night.  For what ever reason, I tossed and turned.  I woke up quite a few times and just never got a great "rest."  It happens.  It wasn't the worst night rest in the world...just not the best.

But why?  This is where the story we tell ourselves matters.

Do you start the day searching your mind for all the things that are "wrong" that could have made you sleep poorly?  Or do you consider that maybe you are excited about today...and your subconscious could hardly wait to get it started?

Either story could be right.  Neither story will change the amount of sleep I got last night.  But the story I choose will have a huge impact on how I feel throughout the day.

Choose wisely.

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Friday, December 11, 2015

It's Not What You Say

When you were younger did you ever hear this?

"It's not what you say.  It's how you say it!"  Those words from our mothers ring even more true today.  With hundreds of new forms of communications, there are constantly new ways to communicate.  That's a good thing, I think.

But on the other side, it has become increasingly easy to be "quick" in your communication.  With the simple and easy functionality of email or text messages, you do lose the nuance.  Sometimes we might simply want to say something directly, but it can come off as rude.  Or at the very least, messages can often be taken in a way that we did not intend.

The trick I think is to (of course) re-read the message before hitting send.  Just as importantly, spend just a moment to think about the mindset of the person reading the message.  Often, when looking through that lens, you might want to re-frame the message...at least just a bit.

You don't have to do that.  It does take more time.  But if you want to be a more thoughtful communicator, it might be worth it.

Just remember those words ringing in your ear from when you were young.  "It's not what you say..."

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Thursday, December 10, 2015

Focus on What You Can Do

I just finished the book "The 12 Week Year" and it has me thinking a bit differently about my goals.  I have always been a big goal setter.  But as the book points out, annual goals can sometimes be tough to set (and achieve).  (This ends up being Book 48 for those keeping track).

The biggest reason is a sense of urgency.

In an annual goal, you always feel like there is more time.  You an waste today because you can make up for it tomorrow, or next week, or next quarter.  The concept of the 12 Week Year is to break goals into 12 Weeks with every week representing a month.  By doing so, each time you waste a day, it really matters.  This can help to create a sense of urgency that sometimes lacks.

The other ideas in the book that I really like is a focus on Tactics.  Though you set "lag goals" which are the overall 12 Week goals, you also focus on creating daily tasks that will help you reach those goals.  This daily list of "to do's" helps you focus on what you can control.

As I said yesterday, "You can't always control whether a big order comes in.  But you can control whether or not you do these specific activities each day."

This concept helps you focus on what you an do--not what others have to do--to reach your goals and objectives.  It puts the responsibility back where it should be...on you.

So when creating your goals for the year (or the 12 Week Year) make sure you take some extra time creating your task list to figure out what you need to do to reach your goals.  Then make the time to make it happen.

Here's to a great 2016!

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Monday, December 7, 2015

What Forgiving Does

When you forgive someone, you don't release them of their indiscretions.  You don't (necessarily) say "what you did is okay." 

When you forgive someone, you release yourself from your anger...and move on.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Keep Your Head on a Swivel!

When I was on the high school football team (hard to believe, I know) I remember a coach yelling "Keep your head on a Swivel!"  The idea was to be aware of your surroundings at all times, so you didn't get clobbered.  If you were looking too closely at a running back, you might not see the pulling guard coming to drill you. 

You never wanted to hear, "Hasseman, you need to keep your head on a swivel!"  It probably meant you were on your back.

I hear that voice in my head now, but in a different way.  Whenever I go to a public place, I "keep my head on a swivel."  But now it's not because I am concerned with a pulling guard.  As an adult, it's because I want to be aware of others around me. 

I want to make sure I am not stepping in front of another person. 

I try to look and make sure I am not bumping someone else out of the way.

Mainly, I am trying to "keep my head on a swivel" so that I am not making MY priority the only important task in the universe. 

We all get busy (especially during the holidays).  But I think the world might be a bit of a better place if we all kept "our head on a swivel" to look out for the needs of others...not just our own.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

After it Stops Being Fun

Each new project or workout plan or business or job starts with a great deal of excitement.  This time will be different!  It's called "uninformed optimism."  We start with the vision of all of the great changes that are coming our way...but we don't really know what it will take to get there.  It's an exciting time, actually.

But then, both the "uninformed" and the "optimism" fade away.  After showing up at the gym or early mornings at the office long enough, we start to get tired.  We are sore.  We are putting in the effort, but not seeing the results. 

It gets easier then, to quit than to keep going.  That moment has happened to all of us.  And, if you are like me, at some point in your life you chose to quit.  No judgements here.

But just know this:  the difference between change and status quo happens in that moment. 

If you want to create change in your life, keep going after it stops being fun.  The fun will come back.