Reach Out to Grab Opportunities

What I like most about this video is what you can see happening in the last metre:

~ First and 2nd place slow down, presumably thinking they’re so close to their goal that they can casually jog through. Yes, they’re still going pretty damn fast, but just watch their movements, you’ll notice they are slowing down.

~ Wottle, coming from last place, jumps to 3rd — then steals the lead and winning because he refuses to give in, refuses to slow down, he runs around those thinking winning place is theirs.

That’s a metaphor.

Start thinking with your feet.

Don’t let anyone or anything stop you, not your age, not lack of knowledge, not time nor distance. Not even heartache or loss. Take a chance, start again, keep moving forward, find a goal and target. Opportunities are yours if you reach out and grab them.
It’s that simple.

Oh, and be prepared – for both failure and success. Don’t be scared of either outcome. Failures are learning opportunities. Successes are not the end of the journey, they are usually the beginning of the next one.

Get moving, or your next journey will begin with you at the back of the pack..

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Speaking on Behalf of your Business

Whenever you speak, remember that you speak on behalf of both yourself and for the business you work within.

Here’s my story of proof.

About 10 years ago one morning I was traveling on a train from home into Adelaide city for my day job.
At one station a guy got on with his bike. Normally nothing would be said – but it was the express train. Bikes are not permitted. But most people on my train were already too tired, or had work on their mind already, or simply didn’t care – so let it slide. But it wasn’t going to be that simple.

He rolled his bike on, looked at me and a group of ladies sitting in seats that flip away to reveal a space normally reserved for bikes. He stood near us for a short while before turning to us and saying “Please move.”

All of the ladies, looked at him, then ignored him. They were in conversation and hadn’t anticipated this. After all, this was the peak-hour train. They’d never had to stand before that day – and rightly so.
He tried again, this time loudly and aggressively. I was at the far end of the 4 seats, so felt no immediate threat. But his tone got menacing, so I stood up and told him he shouldn’t have his bike on the express train, and that we were within our rights to sit there. He then pushed me backwards, and I fell to the floor.

I reckon the train driver saw and heard the whole conversation – the train slightly shook, then resumed speed before stopping at the next station.

At that point the train driver and two station guards were seen walking outside our carriage. One of the ladies beside said to the offensive man – “Oh look, your mummy is here.” That got a laugh out of a few of us. I had sat back on my seat, and my attacker stood at his bike. No apologies came forth.

The driver pointed at me, then at him. As they walked passed me (as they had come onto the carriage at the other door), I was nodded at. They walked up to him – and he went off at the guards, yelling about his rights. Wearing his flashy suit, metal ankle braclet to protect his pants, bright helmet and gloves. A spectacle to behold.

They ‘advised‘ him to get off the train, but just as he stepped off, one guard stopped and asked me if I’d like to press charges.

Some might say I made the wrong choice.

“No, but I’d like to ask him one question.”

“Umm… sure…” I don’t think they hear that often.

Train guards don’t touch people, they corral. I have seen it often enough. So the man moved in an odd way back onto the train without his bike.

“What?” He tried to too look angry, but his eyes said terror.

I smiled weakly and asked “Where do you work? That’s a nice suit.”
He clearly didn’t understand what I just did.

“I WORK FOR ____! THEY ARE GOING TO HEAR ABOUT THIS!”

That’s right, he told the whole carriage. The three ladies were smiling now.

“Good for you. You are right, they are going to hear about this. I can only hope you are not the ambassador for that business – because your attitude and behaviour today is totally NON-professsional. Seeya.”

Even the train guard understood what just happened. They again advised him to get off, with his shiny bike. As this wa the closest station to the city, he’d probably get to work sooner than us.

As the doors closed, there was an audible sigh, a slight laugh, and a few people applauded. I was shaking with both fear and exhilaration. I’d never done that before. I never wanted to ever again.

As I got off the train, three passengers quietly approached me and thanked me. The train guards nodded at me. The driver would have logged the incident.

And his business probably may have received a LOT of phone calls that day.
We never saw him on the train again.

Why tell you this story? I am constantly reminded of it when people I know work in amazing businesses decide to berate me on social media. What do you think I am going to do next? 

Well, I actually prefer not to do anything. I rarely delete social media unless it’s a conversation that should have been had offline. Instead your wonderful comments can stay for ALL my friends to read. Think about that for a second or two.

The Answer to the Penultimate Question! 

Being a parent has taught me some amazing life lessons, one of which contradicts what I have always believed.

So I am producing a informative tongue-in-cheek video that will reveal my answer to the most important question of all time. 

What is the question? Aha, no! That too will be revealed! To see the video late next week, subscribe to my channel: 

https://www.youtube.com/user/stephentrepreneur
If it doesn’t make you laugh, it will make you groan!

Shoot Buoys in a Pond

Photography Prints Ok, it is not a pond: It is a tidal pool.

If you have never seen the tidal pool, ask any of the locals in Kingscote to point you in the right direction. They are nice people, they will.

These five photographs were shot about 3 pm, the perfect time of the day to capture moments and things in ideal light, casting sufficient to show all the craggy lines of each buoy in high macro.

Peruse and purchase your favorite of my photographs below! Links are in each image back to the full version.

Photography Prints | Sell Art Online

Photography Prints | Sell Art Online

Plus an extra shot. This is a combination of rusted corrugated iron and a windmill on family property on Kangaroo Island:

Art Prints

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Does Your Online Audience Understand Your Social Media Business Description?

​If your business is on Facebook or any social media site, your business description is very important. 

I should know. I modify and update both my own and my wife’s business online persona regularly, and I would never say they are perfect! (Links in sidebar)

Businesses shouldn’t be afraid to amend and/or totally rewrite their online persona. They should seriously consider every aspect and word-choice of their business description, or they will fail to entice new clients, and may even put-off regular clients. 

Because it’s difficult, sometimes embarrassing, to give a positive review on a place if their online presence is 2nd-rate and shabby. 

It’s like driving a dirt or a bitumen road into a small town for the first time: The initial view can determine if we swerve back to the highway OR if we want to see what else you have on offer. Yes, a ‘Cars’-movie analogy!

So last week I was advised of a food-outlet (seriously vague to avoid trolling) on Kangaroo Island where tourists and local can do lunch. So, as I always do, I checked out if they had both a facebook page and a website. They have a Facebook page – which is often enough.

Oh, wow. Their name makes no sense to me (but may be based on location), so I moved onto their description. 

Bigger Wow. So I politely (via Facebook Message texts) advised them of the major grammatical and unfortunate spelling mistakes.

Their response: “It’s a low priority, we have bigger things to worry about.”

That’s crazy speak! Are your café menu’s written with the same spelling errors? Do you speak like a five-year-old to your customers, investors, and bank manager? I am guessing not. So why screw up the one place you have the biggest presence?!

If anyone is going to have a web presence – particularly upon social media – your business decription needs to read as you want to be perceived and renowned. 

So now I am having problems taking this business seriously. I’d like to have a professional social media person talk with them, just to advise them. Yet I fear they won’t listen to them either. 

It’s a real shame when small businesses fail to see how social media presence can increase their profit margin OR wipe them from online existence. 

Never ignore your online audience. They are both your advisers (via either compliments or complaints) and customers (when they want something, they go hunting online first).

I am going to ask a few SME’s I know for their opinion, and if they’d help. I’ll let you know if this gets resolved.

Not Everybody’s Cup of Tshirts

As a part-time hobby I design artwork for tshirts for a whole range of amazing clients.

Usually they send me a drawing or a screen-dump of something they’d like to see printed on a Tshirt. Unfortunately some I have to reject because of ‘Intellectual Property‘ laws, or it’s a blatant ripoff. Satirical pieces I have done, but more often I redesign an idea into something completely new.

Some people might take offense to words in some of my tshirt designs. Maybe they grew up in an era where sexual thoughts and offensive language were not made public let alone printed on tshirts. Or on a coffee mug. Or on leggings.

At the very least I look at client ideas, and think to myself:If I was to reject your idea because I don’t like the message, or the lifestyle it promotes, or how some religious zealots may react, what am I really saying? That I am putting others’ beliefs above my client’s gender or life-choice? That someone else runs my business? That I can or will only do artwork with the approval of ALL the people in my life? Of course not, that would be silly. No, I won’t do that.

So occasionally I design a few tshirts that are going to offend a few people. Well, that’s easy: Don’t look. If you see the tshirt in the street, talk to that person – they paid for it. Or turn away. It’s like watching TV: If the channel is showing something you don’t like, change the channel.

To date nobody has complained or commented on my artwork – yet by publishing this, they may now.

When a client or a follower wants a design, I show them three examples of my design of their idea. Because they are rarely on commission, I show them how to purchase online via Redbubble.com. It’s really easy, you can pick from a whole lot of different colors, tshirt styles, and other merchandise you might like to see it on.

Checkout the following merchandise designed for various friends over the last ten years.

If you like any of them, you should be wearing them. Don’t let anyone stop you from being what you were born and who you are. Each image links back to my redbubble tshirt gallery where you can choose which best suits you.

  

   

 

PostScript: I finally designed an unusual request from a few years ago earlier this week. It’s actually nothing new, but they wanted to see how I would approach the design. Yes, the client is a lesbian – get over it. I know them, they are a beautiful person, and their lifestyle has no impact on you or me. In her words … “Even if you were my type, you’ll never know. Those that are my type, often know before I do.” That’s how all relationships should be. Look out for this tshirt-design, it will be online very soon … and I imagine it will be more popular than the ones above!

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Looking Back: 10 Years of Blogging on WordPress

Sometimes it’s good to look back in time to where we began blogging. I started blogging way back in the early 00’s (that’s 2000, not 1900!), first on Geocities, then I moved over to Blogger, and now I have been on WordPress since 2006!

Here are a few of mine articles from way back then:

Hope that intrigued you. It’s always good for me: I enjoy reminiscing on times before I attained Vertigo back in 2012. I somehow lost both good and bad life-memories because of it. Thinkin’ I should do this more often, for each year online.

[UPDATE] Whilst editing my archives on Sunday afternoon I discovered I have written similar articles over the last 15 months. This one – Ten Years on WordPress – is a little more comprehensive.
Oops. Yet I will let both articles remain independent. At least now I can easily search and find the articles (because I have added more #tags), therefore won’t do it again until my fifteenth and twentieth year of blogging!
[/UPDATE]

Postscript: The following two photos were photographed on Kangaroo Island back in 2005(ish), shot with a Canon 400D and a stock lens.
The first is from the top of Prospect Hill. It has been closed for the last few years due to weathering of the steps up the dunes.
The second is on the Penneshaw grass just up from the SeaLink jetty.
If you have been to KI, you will know the places.

Vanishing Point

Heli-Landing

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