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April 29, 2017

How to save time on presentation production. 

Does your practice require you to create visual content for presentations? Do you waste time trying to time out your slide show to record? Do you get nervous when presenting to groups?

The best way to create and present in a flawless manner is to be prepared to present. Prepare the content you intend to share and practice until you can't practice anymore. The following tip will drastically reduce the amount of time you spend creating so you have more time to practice!

When you create a presentation including a slide show, start by drafting your script. Review the draft with a Highlighter or BOLD the text you intend to use as the focal point for each slide or transition in your presentation. Here are four ways this trick will save you time and effort!

1. Visualization of your presentation. Once your presentation has been drafted begin thinking about how you can best visually capture this information for your audience. Take the topic of each piece of your presentation and describe this topic with one adjective. This will allow you to begin questioning all of the ways you can now display this concept in a visual manner.

2. Quickly find content for your presentation when searching stock photo/ video databases. Multiple stock databases now include a search function. Use the list of adjectives you created and search for the stock content which best matches the visual you imagined.

3. Reduce timing slides with an audio recording. Once your slide show is put together and you are prepared to convert to a recording you will need to know when to switch slides to match the audio. With the text for each transition and slide in Highlight/ BOLD, you will no longer need to remember which slide comes next or how to precisely match your audio timing.

4. Simplify live presentations. Similar to the timing of your presentation slides for recording, live presentation errors are greatly reduced with the Highlight/ BOLD text strategy. You will be seamlessly prepared for each transition from a pre-recorded video or slides with a handheld remote.

If you find this post has helped you save TIME, we want to hear from you! Please share and let us now how implementing this strategy has helped your practice.

Interested in learning more?

Click Here To Join the Community

April 22, 2017

Tania Green whips up a batch of bites and finds her passion!

Tania Green, Founder, and CEO of PMS  Bites was born and raised in Boston, MA. Her mother fostered her entrepreneurial spirit while managing her busy Newbury Street Spa. Tania's all girl high school helped her to develop self-confidence and leadership skills. This powerhouse mix helped Tania whip up a batter like nothing you have ever tried before. Join us for Episode #65 as we dive into the story of how PMS Bites was born and life after Shark Tank.
"I quickly learned that balls are not marketable!" ~Tania Green
Strategy: Flexibility, patience, and persistence will eventually produce a sweet surprise. Find a way to maintain a positive mindset by surrounding yourself with supportive family and friends.
Wisdom: Set goals, seek out mentors who can add value to your practice and ask for advice. When you hear a "NO" during your journey.... Breath, take a step back, reflect on why and most importantly, keep moving forward.
Wish: To have greater insight into and have an open mind to the opportunity to expand into new markets with less fear.
Reach Out Via: www.PMSBites.com
SHARK TANK - "Episode 726" - A woman from Boston, Massachusetts, hopes the Sharks will make a deal and sink their teeth into her chocolate treats that are perfect for women who want to satisfy cravings; a season four entrepreneur from Aeworth, Georgia, returns for a second chance to pitch the Shark's his new business, a line of men's hair products; a man from Telluride, Colorado, who is desperate for capital, plans to warm the Sharks' hearts with an app that allows users to electronically send handwritten cards; and a man from Boston, Massachusetts, believes he has created a unique way to break bad habits with self-zapping wristbands. Also, recaps and updates featuring the various entrepreneurs that appeared during season seven, on "Shark Tank," FRIDAY, MAY 20 (9:00-10:01 p.m. EDT), on the ABC Television Network. (ABC/Michael Desmond)


April 15, 2017

Three simple steps to find new prospects.

Where do you find prospects?



People talk... all the time.... often more then they listen! Use this simple human truth to your advantage. Stop wasting marketing dollars and start creating remarkable ones. 

Do a remarkable job and people will make remarks about you!

A word of mouth referral is far more powerful than any marketing material you will ever create! Here are three simple steps to get people talking about your practice, without spending.

Step 1. Review Who You Work With

Sit down with your (CRM) Client Relationship Management program or a piece of paper and a pen. It is not really important which one you choose. I am not about to have you create a massive spreadsheet of clients. Keep this process as simple as you can. Start by opening the client data in your system or listing on a piece of paper the first five clients which pop into your mind. 

Now expand on your list. Create a list which includes much detail as possible regarding each of the clients noted. Think of each meeting, each call, really review and record everything you know about each person.

Step 2. Identify Your Hi/ Lo's List

Once you have the information collected on the first five clients you think of, begin thinking about why it is this particular set of clients popped into your head. What is it that made this set of clients, stand out for you? 

List each of the positive and negative aspects (if applicable) of each encounter and communication with each of the clients you have taken note of. Answer the following question for each client. Why and how did your current customers purchase the initial product from you?

Step 3. Find the current need

Your current customer purchased a product which addressed a need for them. What else can you help your client prepare for that you may not have discussed during your initial sale? Is this solution something relevant to their life situation and goals? Review where the greatest amount of need exists in your practice based on the sample numbers generated from the list of five clients you have worked with. This may be a simple task if you have been focused on selling a specific product for the majority of your career.

Once you have completed Steps 1-3, describe where the opportunity exists in your practice by spotting which trends appear in the information collected. Create groups of clients based off of the similarities to help you clarify who you want to work with and how you can serve them best. Then serve in a "remarkable manner."

Subscribe today for additional tips to help you find the opportunity in your practice.


April 8, 2017

Joseph Moore on life after Shark Tank and the power of believing in you.

Joseph Moore was driving down the highway almost 15 years ago when a sneeze changed his life. Joseph joins the Technology = Equality Community for episode #64 to share behind the scene secrets of his Shark Tank experience the journey of building First Defense Nasal Screen. Listen in as Joe explains how persistence and having a "why" helped him to conquer the Shark Tank and build a global corporation.

How many people have these great ideas, but don't have the belief in themselves to follow through on it.

~Joseph Moore

Strategy: Learn to appreciate what is, to clarify what could be. The road is long, hard and will never be what you expect; but persistence will serve you well.

Wisdom: Try new things and always dream big. Once you figure out what you want to do... believe in you! Make the decision to be all in on your choice and focus.

Wish: To increase the quality of life for millions of people globally.

Reach Out Via: www.filteryourlife.com



April 2, 2017

Time Is Money

It’s time to say goodbye to the first quarter of 2017 and welcome the second quarter with open arms and new goals. How are you planning to increase your production this quarter?

We have all heard the phrase 'Time is Money', but why do we not apply this simple idea to our everyday lives?

As a financial professional, I’m  sure you can agree that delegating tasks to a non-existent team member is impossible. You recognize your ability to generate more income with more time. You understand you need to delegate, but where do you begin?

How do successful sales professionals efficiently save time and generate additional income?

It is 2017 and you can delegate tasks to your electronics to save both time and  money! I am about to share with you one strategy you can use to begin creating time and income today. 

Sound too good to be true?

Consider this, on any given day you have an average of 75 emails to read and respond to, on top of conducting business as usual. Each email can take anywhere from 3-7 minutes of your day. With 75 emails to read and reply to, this is minimum 225 minutes or 3.75 hours of your day! Your 3+ hours daily could be spent on income generating activities.

So how do you reclaim your hours and money? Invest your time wisely! Start by creating an email 'read & response' strategy.

  1. Schedule your email into the day as you do all tasks. Stop checking your email anytime of the day, just because you can. Structure the time you check your email to complement how you structure your day. Reduce the number of times you check your email and batch the process of responding.
  2. Dictate an email. Worth the effort you ask? Without a doubt! Historically, dictation services have not worked as well as advertised. However, of recent, technology has advanced to the 'Jetson's Age'.  Many dictation programs are built into your mobile device and adapt to your speaking patterns to improve greatly with regular use.

Dictation can save you almost 2-3 minutes per reply! With an average of 75 e-mails, only taking 1-2 minutes you are saving yourself almost two and a half hours. An additional 2.5 hours daily may not seem like much, but let's take a step out of W.I.N.O. mode (Working In Not On your business) and look at it the additional 2.5 hours daily from B.O.S.S. mode (Building Operations to Support your Success). In a week consisting of five business days, you have an additional 12.5 hours, or 650 additional hours in a year! With approximately 8 hours in a business day, the 650 hours becomes almost two and a half months of time saved! You now have the potential to dedicate your additional 2.5 hours daily or 2.5 months annually to income generating activities creating an instant “Personal Pay Day”!

If you need help getting organized with your sales practice, click here to schedule a strategy session today!

Stay tuned as we celebrate a special Shark Tank theme to kick off quarter two!

April 2, 2017

In Celebration of the Life of Edmund P. Strother. 



Last week I hit the pause button on production as our family took some time to celebrate the life of my grandfather who passed away at the age of ninety-five, the morning of March 25th.

My grandfather was a great source of strength and inspiration for many. He left high school early and began working to help his family. He held various positions and often created his own opportunity. He sold wood by the bushel, washed windows and shined shoes to name a few. He learned the sheet metal trade in Somerville, Ma and studied photography at MIT. In 1938 at the age of 17, my grandfather joined what was known as the "CCC" the civilian conservation corps in Townsend, Ma.

The civilian conservation corps was a work relief program designed as part of the structure of the "New Deal" for the United States. The "New Deal" was developed to provide an economic stimulus to the general population after the Great Depression. The "New Deal" gave birth to programs providing relief, recovery, and reform to the American population with the implementation of programs such as Social Security.

Yes, that is correct, my grandfather was alive before Social Security was invented!

Just to give you a little perspective on the times he grew up in; my grandfather received a wage of $30 a month. This is just under $600 a month in this day and age.  When he was growing up the mindset instilled in him was to create his own security.

He continued to work multiple jobs after the civilian conservation corps regardless of the distance he had to travel to find it. In 1942 in the midst of World War II, my grandfather decided to enter the US Army Air Force. He served as a Staff Sergeant stationed at Fort Dix, New Jersey and Tuskegee, Alabama. During his service, he was deployed to places like Japan, New Guinea, Luzon and the Philippines. He was honorably discharged having earned a host of awards including; the Bronze Star, a Victory Medal, and his favorite medal (the one all kids in the family, friends of the family, and random people at the supermarket heard multiple stories about over the years) his Sharp Shooters Medal.

My grandfather learned to play the trumpet in junior high school. He and my great-grandfather, who played piano, often held jam sessions with family friends. Inspired by his love of music, my grandfather organized a 40-piece all brass band while stationed in Tuskegee. The band eventually grew to a 72-piece band. This story, much like his sharp shooter medal, became a regular story line for all to hear! If you didn't know he loved the trumpet, you didn't know my granddad!

My grandparents had five children at a time when the internet and ease of life we enjoy today was just a dream. He turned the dream of easy living into a reality by putting in the work. Post his service in the Air Force, my grandfather didn't slow down, he had a family to provide for. He held a full-time position with Raytheon and opened his own photography studio on the side. He owned various residential and rental properties throughout the city and later took a position with the Boston Public Schools. He retired as head of the OSHA division within the school department.

He worked his butt off to have the ability to enjoy his life. He didn't just dream about it or hope that one day someone would change things for him. He thought about the life he wanted to provide for his family and the legacy he wanted to leave. He took action, at a time when the chips were stacked against him and hope was a distant memory for most in this country. Granddad was always looking for an opportunity to keep moving forward (even if his actions at the time felt like baby steps). At ninety-five he was still discussing the next property he was going to buy on the lake!

My grandfather enjoyed many years in his retirement and the life he created. He lived to witness five generations of his family blossom; five children, eight grandchildren, three great-grandchildren and one great, great-grandchild.

My grandfather was born before television became a reality. He witnessed the development of society as it is today and lived long enough to own and enjoy his own cell phone.

Granddad even created a new trend I like to call elderly dialing!

Granddad Thank You for providing us with strength, stability, wisdom and love.

You have left behind a legacy of hard work and pure happiness!

Edmund P. Strother

1921 ~  2017


March 18, 2017

Robinn Lange on listening to and believing in yourself.

Robinn spends much of his time training and working with entrepreneurs through his ROBINN-LANGE-HEADSHOT.pnggrowing library of resources. This week Robinn joins the Technology = Equality Community for episode #63 to share his resources with you!
"Even when we don't want to entrepreneur, we entrepreneur."
~Robinn Lange
Strategy: Listen to your gut and make what you want to happen, happen! Create goals, and be persistent but flexible. Find mentors and learn as much as you can.
Wisdom: Believe in yourself, believe in your vision and have a clear path as to where you are headed. You learn as much from what to do as you learn from what not to do.
Wish: An adaptability program which would assist in embracing the progress while maintaining balance.
March 11, 2017

Document & Review… How to scale your sales practice with ease.


Let's try to reverse engineer your entrepreneurial journey. What is it that you would ultimately like to see as the future of your sales practice? It doesn't matter if you have just started your journey. Take a moment to imagine how you would like to see your sales practice running in the next couple of weeks, months or even years.

Ask yourself the following questions;

  • How do I want to operate my business?
  • How big will my business be in five years?
  • Will I need a team?
  • How do I want to communicate with my team?
  • How will I track what goes on in my business, if I am not micro-managing every detail?

A long time ago, long before tablets & cell phones, I used to dream of being a business woman on the go with Star trek like devices running it all, no matter where I was.

That's no longer a dream.... Thank You Apple!

I took the time to think about how I wanted to see myself running the business. Had I never invested my time in getting organized, there is no way I could have created or maintained my practice as it grew! Getting organized in your practice can drastically change your production.

Once you have an idea of how your business will run, try to write out the details as they come to you. What will your production count look like? What color is your letterhead? How many clients do you see on a weekly basis? What product markets will you focus on? Try to clarify as many details about your future practice as possible.

I learned quickly if we want to increase numbers, I had to know how to process things in the fastest, most efficient manner possible. When I began working in financial services, I took notes on my every move and turned each action into a batch of processes as I navigated each new case. Eventually, I would take all of my notes and turn them into a procedure log for quick reference. To scale a process, you must understand every piece of the process.

You need to understand why the pieces are what they are and where each piece fits into the process as a whole.

In my experience, new financial professionals are concerned with generating income and gaining the first or next client. They keep general information for each customer but neglect to keep this information organized in a manner they can easily refer to.

Once you have several ideas on paper, begin thinking about the resources you currently have available. Which resources do you currently use to support your practice and why? Consider which resources work best together and how they will assist you in the growth of your practice.

Technology is changing daily and the last thing you want to do is have you business scramble to keep up. Review your long-term idea of your sales practice and think about what programs (ex. Client Relationship Management System) you may need to accomplish your vision. Is there a particular operating system you may want or need to implement to improve what you currently do or may do in the future? Always consider the return on the investment of any actions taken or programs used. Begin implementing the programs and systems that have the potential to decrease overall production costs as early as possible.

F.Y.I.- Free is not always the best option! 

 Yes, I preach frugality, especially in a start up! However, There are things you should not try to get frugal with, two of which are; 
  1. Your software
  2. The time creating your procedures!

It is 2017 and there are numerous workflow and procedure applications to choose from. Be sure the software you purchase is compatible with how you want to run your business. Consider the following;

  • Is the software accessible in mobile format?
  • How easy is the system to learn and operate?
  • Are there any mobile limitations with the software?
  • Did you try a demo version?

When starting your sales practice, get as organized as possible as early as possible. Map out step by step actions you need to accomplish to create the practice you described above. If you begin documenting all of your processes and what you would like them to be, scaling your practice, will seem like a walk in the park!

March 4, 2017

How to begin finding your X-Factor with Isabelle Mercier-Turcotte

Isabelle_HeadShot_1_500x500.jpgIsabelle Mercier-Turcotte, one of North America’s Top Small Business Influencers, TEDx Speaker, best-selling author and TV show host takes a moment from her extremely busy schedule to join the Technology = Equality Community for Episode #62. Listen in as Isabelle shares insight on how to begin finding your X-factor.


“I would have needed more courage for me to get a job.” ~Isabelle Mercier-Turcotte


Strategy: Watch & Learn- Isabelle’s parents each built individual sales practices while raising her. She often helped her mom and the entrepreneurial spirit developed into a passion during childhood.  


Wisdom: Bubble Time, as Isabelle calls it, is the ticket to reclaiming your time! Structure your time to provide the unstructured time.


Wish: To provide a global, seamless, evergreen process for interested clients to enroll in the Built To Rock program.


Tools: Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less- Greg McGowan




Reach Out Via: Build To Rock 


February 25, 2017

How do you capture future opportunities?

In my last post "How To Perfect Your Client Retention Plan for 2017" I promised you a couple of strategies to ensure you can seamlessly create time for taking thorough notes. As previously discussed, your appointment notes can serve as a gold mine for your practice. The list below is a set of actionable steps you can take today to ensure you never miss an opportunity and your client relationships continue to grow.

1. Collect your thoughts. 

Take a moment to collect your thoughts before you meet with a prospect. Ask yourself the following;

  • What do you already know about the prospect?
  • Why are you planning to meet with them?
  • What is it that they need your help with in the grand scheme and how can you deliver this?
  • How will you make your prospect see the value in your solution?

Taking a moment to breathe will allow you to have a clear mindset as you begin to collect the next set of familial details.

2. Schedule it in

Seriously, make time in your calendar to take the notes. I know it may seem silly, but if you schedule it in, it is far more likely to get done. Yes, I am talking about physically adding time to your weekly calendar. I want you to take a look at your upcoming appointments for the month. Review where you are most likely to have down time and add in the time to take notes for the previous 1 - 3 appointments. The more frequent your appointments, the more frequent you should take down notes. There is no magic frequency nor is there a level of detail, just try to make it a routine. The more you do it the better you'll become at capturing each bit of information mentioned.

3. Create a summary Prepare a list for yourself separate from the agenda for your appointment. This list should contain all of the information you would require when completing the application for any product you feel may be relative to the opportunity you intend to discuss. When your appointment is completed this list will serve as a checklist of the items you have discussed. Use this list to quickly create your appointment notes.

4. Use your technology 

The majority of financial professionals actively producing in 2017 carry or make use of a cell phone or tablet device. There are a million audio recording and dictation apps on the market. Download one now and dictate your notes post your appointments to avoid forgetting anything.


***BONUS TIP*** If you own an iPhone your recording software is already built-in! Set your audio recorder on your home screen or in the toolbar for easy access.