by Lenny with Stopwatch Creative
Here are five ways to gain your very first customer:
Gaining your first customer can be challenging but essential in building your business. By leveraging your network, attending events, utilizing social media, offering a free trial, and cold outreach, you can increase your chances of success and build momentum for your business. Learn how agencies like Stopwatch Creative and platforms for business like CollaborateandElevate.com are making a positive difference.
University of Tennessee intern joins Stopwatch Creative & CollaborateandElevate.com team
Official Press Release from Stopwatch Creative
Great news! We're thrilled to welcome a new addition to our marketing team here at Stopwatch Creative & CollaborateandElevate.com. Please join us in giving a warm welcome to our newest sophomore intern, Lucy Kloiber, who hails from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
With her passion for field hockey, we know that Lucy will bring her competitive spirit and drive to the table. We can't wait to see how she'll use her skills on the field to help our team score some big wins in the marketing world.
As a sophomore, we understand that Lucy is just beginning her journey in the professional world. But we're confident that her enthusiasm and eagerness to learn will make her an invaluable asset to our team. We're excited to see her grow and thrive in this new environment, and we're committed to providing her with the resources and support she needs to succeed.
At Stopwatch Creative, we pride ourselves on being a dynamic and diverse team, and we're thrilled to add Lucy's unique perspective and experiences to our group. We believe that diversity and inclusion are essential to creating an environment where everyone can thrive, and we're committed to fostering a culture of respect, collaboration, and innovation.
We're confident that Lucy will feel right at home with our team, and we can't wait to see what she'll accomplish during her time with us. We're honored to have her on board, and we know that her contributions will be instrumental in helping us achieve our goals.
So, welcome to the team, Lucy! Let's get ready to hit the ground running and make some magic happen in the world of marketing. We're so excited to see what the future holds!
Learn more about Stopwatch Creative here: https://www.stopwatchcreative.com/
Learn more about Collaborate and Elevate here: https://collaborateandelevate.com/
by Manny Larcher
Too many meetings can be a waste of time for a number of reasons:
Here are 5 reasons to avoid business meetings:
A lot has been written about this problem, Harvard Business Review has put together a helpful list to make meetings more productive ahead of time:
1. Collect data from each person.
To get a clearer view of how meetings are affecting your group, use surveys or interviews to gather data and impressions from every individual. That will help you gauge the full extent of the problem: You’ll learn how much resentment is bubbling under the surface and how much work isn’t getting done during the day.
2. Interpret the data together.
Next, it’s critical to come together as a team or a unit to digest everyone’s feedback and analyze what is working and what is not. This must be an open, nonjudgmental discussion of the survey or interview findings. Neutral facilitators can help keep the conversation constructive. However, delegating the data interpretation to an outside consultant—or even just a subset of the team—can undermine success. You’ll need contributions and analysis from all team members to generate the widespread understanding and buy-in required for the remaining steps.
At the financial and regulatory consultancy we studied, for example, exploratory interviews revealed that meetings were chopping up calendars so badly that very few two- or three-hour blocks were left for deep-thinking work. Without enough quiet time to concentrate, the consultants felt that their creativity and productivity were being sapped. These disclosures served as a wake-up call for the managers who had been scheduling meetings without a full awareness of the impact they were having.
3. Agree on a collective, personally relevant goal.
We have found that personally benefiting from the group’s initiative is a great motivator. For example, you might designate a certain amount of time each week for people to focus on independent work—whether in the office or at home. Giving them such flexibility and freedom can provide necessary relief in their schedules, along with an incentive to make the arrangement work. Declaring “meeting free” periods also forces the whole group to reevaluate meetings that were normally scheduled during those times and to ask who really needs to attend. As a result, we find, teams hold fewer meetings overall, and fewer people go to each one. The additional “white space” in everyone’s calendar increases individual productivity and reduces the spillover into personal time.
Here’s how this approach worked at a technology consultancy we examined: Members were based in the United States and India, so a handoff meeting was held each day—early in the morning for some and late at night for others to accommodate the 12.5-hour time difference. The long days were causing significant stress and fatigue on both sides: Early-morning calls were required, family dinners were missed, workdays were more than 12 hours long. Once the team had collected survey data from its members and realized the magnitude of the problem, it altered its approach: Each person was given one workday a week when he or she didn’t have to participate in the handoff call.
In order to ensure the appropriate information exchange, team members had to find ways to cover for one another and keep everyone updated. Learning how to do that gave individuals the break they needed, but it also resulted in more shared knowledge and versatility in the group. Furthermore, people gained a deeper understanding of their colleagues’ work, which led to better-integrated offerings for customers.
4. Set milestones and monitor progress.
As with any change effort, it is important that concrete and measurable progress be assessed and discussed along the way. Small, tangible wins provide something for people to celebrate, and small losses provide opportunities for learning and correction. Consider this example: At a global e-commerce company, a team of 30 employees spanning the United States and China told us that their weekly all-hands meetings were a pain point. Attendees were often on their phones or laptops. Because people were continually distracted, those who spoke had to repeat themselves frequently, making the time spent not only longer but also much less effective. To help address these problems, the team decided on a simple, tractable goal: Allow no outside technology at the meetings.
At first several vocal engineers and even the team leader were resistant, feeling that they should have the right to use their devices, especially when meetings became boring or turned to topics outside their purview. For a while after the initiative was launched, friendly reminders (“No tech, man!”) were necessary. But over time the new norm took hold, and even the manager self-corrected when he instinctively started to check his phone. The team began to see the benefits of this experiment. Meetings became more productive, and people were more engaged. As one engineer said, “This no-tech rule is fantastic! Now that people are more focused on the meeting, it’s more efficient.” Another team member started bringing a notebook to jot down thoughts rather than playing games on her phone. This small victory opened the door to setting other new norms, such as preparing materials more thoroughly ahead of time, keeping meetings as brief as possible, and ultimately reworking meeting cadences to better fit the team members’ schedules.
5. Regularly debrief as a group.
Finally, we have found that it is critical to regularly and openly take stock of how people feel about the meetings they attend and about their work process more generally. Frustration, resentment, and even hopelessness are signals that people are falling back into bad patterns. Moreover, changing protocols and behaviors takes time, and sustaining momentum requires consistent attention and contact.
At a pharmaceutical company we worked with, the global medical-affairs division established two regular “pulse checks” to monitor the progress of an experiment it was conducting with meeting-free days: one check within the subteam and one across the division. At the beginning of each pulse check, participants answered four questions: How are you feeling? How valuable are the ways in which you are spending your time? How well are you working as a team? Is this sustainable?
The answers to these questions triggered substantive discussions, rich in emotional, strategic, and tactical content. Early conversations focused specifically on the meeting problem, but over time they increasingly addressed how team members approached their work—and one another. One manager said, “I’m impressed with how these meetings have allowed people to open up, particularly with [the manager] listening….Pulse checks are really insightful—they give me a good dose of reality…and they surfaced issues that resulted in more cross-coverage, people development, and teamwork. It sounds crazy that this little experiment could create these sorts of results, but it has profound implications far beyond the initial goal.”
Read more from Harvard Business Review here.
Building a Strong Foundation for Your Startup: 3 Reasons Why Gino Wickman's Traction Book is a Must-Read for Founders and Startups
by Manny Larcher
Gino Wickman's book "Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business" is a practical guide for entrepreneurs and startup founders looking to build a successful business. Here are three reasons why it is a valuable resource for founders and startups:
Founders building in climate: here are 40 VC funds investing in climatetech at the early stage
by Manny Larcher
Climate Tech is a rapidly evolving field that is focused on developing and deploying technology solutions to address the challenges of climate change. In recent years, there has been a surge of activity and investment in this space, driven by growing public awareness of the urgent need to address climate change.
Some of the key developments in Climate Tech over the past few years include:
Overall, the Climate Tech sector is rapidly evolving, and there is a lot of optimism about its potential to help mitigate the effects of climate change.
Early-stage ClimateTech VCs shared by Outset Capital: https://lnkd.in/gC92PiXj
Do you have a fund and investing in ClimateTech? Get yours added here: https://lnkd.in/g2kTvENM
Power Up Your Health with Beets: Exploring the Many Benefits of this Nutritious Root Vegetable + Recipes
by Manny Larcher
Beets, also known as beetroot, are nutritious root vegetables rich in various vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Here are some potential benefits of eating beets:
What are Betalains?
Betalains are a group of phytonutrients that give beets their rich red, purple, and yellow color. These compounds are water-soluble pigments belonging to nitrogen-containing compounds called betalains. Betalains are categorized into two types: betacyanins, responsible for the red-purple color in beets, and betaxanthins, which give beets their yellow color.
Apart from their role in coloration, betalains have also been found to have various potential health benefits. They have been shown to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which may help protect against chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Betalains may also have detoxifying effects and can help support liver function. Additionally, some research has suggested that betalains have anti-microbial and anti-viral properties, which could help protect against infections.
Betalains are an essential group of phytonutrients abundant in beets and other related vegetables such as chard and spinach. They may provide various health benefits and are an excellent reason to include beets in your diet.
Back to the beets benefits..
6. Immune system support: Beets are high in vitamin C and other antioxidants, which can help boost the immune system and protect against infections.
Overall, beets are a nutritious and versatile vegetable with various health benefits when included in a balanced diet.
Here are a few of my favorite recipes:
These are just a few examples of the many ways you can enjoy the health benefits of beets in your diet.
Get creative in the kitchen and experiment with different recipes to find your favorites, enjoy!
We rank our Top 9 Jon Jones Performances in the UFC ahead of his much anticipated return against Ciryl Gane
Ahead of his upcoming fight this Saturday at UFC 285 against Ciryl Gane, we wanted to share his top 9 performances:
1. UFC 165 vs. Alexander Gustafsson: This fight is widely regarded as one of the greatest in UFC history. Jones and Gustafsson put on a five-round war that saw both fighters land significant strikes and takedowns. In the end, Jones won by unanimous decision, but it was a close and hard-fought battle.
2. UFC 140 vs. Lyoto Machida: Jones defended his light heavyweight title against Machida in this fight, and he did so in spectacular fashion. Jones landed a standing guillotine choke in the second round, forcing Machida to tap out and giving Jones his fourth successful title defense.
3. UFC 197 vs. Ovince Saint Preux: In this fight, Jones took on Saint Preux for the interim light heavyweight title. Jones dominated the fight from start to finish, using his grappling and striking to outclass his opponent and win by unanimous decision.
4. UFC 145 vs. Rashad Evans: Jones defended his title against former teammate Rashad Evans in this fight, and he did so convincingly. Jones used his length and striking to keep Evans at bay, eventually winning by unanimous decision.
5. UFC 159 vs. Chael Sonnen: Jones took on Sonnen in this fight, and he made quick work of his opponent. Jones secured a first-round TKO victory, and it was clear that Sonnen was no match for the reigning champion.
6. UFC 128 vs. Mauricio Rua: Jones won his first UFC title in this fight, taking on Rua for the light heavyweight championship. Jones dominated the fight from start to finish, winning by TKO in the third round and establishing himself as a force to be reckoned with in the division.
7. UFC 232 vs. Alexander Gustafsson 2: Jones faced Gustafsson in a highly anticipated rematch at UFC 232, and he did not disappoint. Jones dominated the fight, winning by TKO in the third round and solidifying his status as one of the greatest fighters of all time.
8. UFC 214 vs. Daniel Cormier 2: Jones faced Cormier in a highly anticipated rematch at UFC 214, and he once again came out on top. Jones landed a brutal head kick in the third round, followed by a series of punches that led to a TKO victory.
9. UFC 165 vs. Vitor Belfort: Jones defended his title against Belfort in this fight, and he did so in spectacular fashion. Jones locked in a beautiful armbar in the first round, forcing Belfort to tap out and securing his sixth successful title defense.
In conclusion, Jon Jones has had many memorable performances in the UFC, but these 9 stand out as his best. From dominant title defenses to hard-fought battles, Jones has shown time and time again why he is one of the greatest fighters of all time.