ActionCOACH Welcomes Business Development Director

Elm Grove, Wis. – December 5, 2018 – ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin has welcomed Jill Allen to the team as the new Business Development Director. Jill joins the team with 20+ years as an accomplished business development executive and business owner.

Allen was the Founder and CEO of Consumer Health Connections, a technology company that delivers innovative, cutting-edge solutions within the insurance industry. She is a Registered Nurse and holds a BS in Business Management and an MS in Health Service Administration.

“I am very excited to join the ActionCOACH team,” said Allen. “I am looking forward to working with this phenomenal group and engaging with business owners who have a vested interest in moving their business to the next level.”

“We are thrilled to welcome Jill to our team,” said Jim Palzewicz, Managing Partner of ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin. “She is a passionate leader and strategic thinker. Her experience, expertise, and understanding of what it takes to own a successful growing business will be a great addition to our entire community.”

With offices in Elm Grove and Racine, ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin has worked with hundreds of business owners to take their companies from good to great, employing customized strategies and processes developed by ActionCOACH, the world’s largest business coaching firm, EOS® from the best-selling book Traction®, and Engage & Grow, a revolutionary activation system to improve employee engagement. The firm has won multiple awards recognizing individual coaches and its overall team performance, both from ActionCOACH’s international headquarters and from regional business organizations. More information is available by calling 262-790-1213 or at aceg.biz

Molly BarnesActionCOACH Welcomes Business Development Director
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3 Ways To Make The Most Of The Holiday Season

This time of year can be exhausting as the holiday rush picks up, the time changes and the weather drastically cools, but you can still finish the year strong! Here are three ways to make the most of the holiday season:

  1. Review your business plan. What do you need to accomplish yet this year and next? What have you gotten really good at? What can you improve on next? Set a New Year’s Resolution or just start taking action on your goals sooner rather than later!
  2. Show gratitude to your network. Make sure those you interact with regularly know you are thankful for them. It’s always the right time to say “thanks” for being a part of my network. This time of year is meant to be celebrated too so celebrate your wins with those around you!
  3. Tell people what’s new with your business, and if you’re meeting someone new, tell people about your business. Let your people know what’s new with your business at the annual get together, visit with your spouse’s coworkers, and even your always eager to visit relatives. You never know where your next lead will come from and who they might know that needs to know you!

There’s still plenty of time to finish the year strong and to work ahead on next year’s goals. Don’t use the holiday season as an excuse to slide through the rest of the year. What is one thing you are going to take action on today to move your business forward?

By: Molly Barnes

Molly Barnes3 Ways To Make The Most Of The Holiday Season
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ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin Coaches named BNI Presidents Role

Elm Grove, Wis. – October 23, 2018 – ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin Certified Business Coaches Jackie Zach and Mike Thompson have both been named the President of their respective BNI: Business Networking International Chapters for 2019. Zach will be President of the Racine Pacesetters chapter and Thompson will be the President of the Boundless Business chapter in New Berlin, WI.

“I am honored to have been selected by my chapter members and look forward to serving our chapter for the next year,” said Mike Thompson. “The Boundless Business BNI chapter has a long-standing tradition of excellence and growth in the business community and I look forward to seeing what happens in the year to come.”

“I am honored and excited to have been chosen to lead Racine Pacesetters BNI chapter this year,” said Zach. “Our chapter has amazing professionals from all areas of business, and I look forward to helping usher our chapter into the future.”

With offices in Elm Grove and Racine, ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin has worked with hundreds of business owners to take their companies from good to great, employing customized strategies and processes developed by ActionCOACH, the world’s largest business coaching firm, EOS® from the best-selling book Traction®, and Engage & Grow, a revolutionary activation system to improve employee engagement. The firm has won multiple awards recognizing individual coaches and its overall team performance, both from ActionCOACH’s international headquarters and from regional business organizations. More information is available by calling 262-790-1213 or at aceg.biz

Molly BarnesActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin Coaches named BNI Presidents Role
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The Journey to EOS® – Achieving EOS Mastery

In my previous posts, I shared learnings from our May 11th EOS® Users Group Session. More than thirty Visionaries and Integrators™ (V & I’s) from EOS-using companies shared their experiences and best practices regarding the storms, reefs, and mutinies that can sink your implementation, and how to navigate your business through them to a safe port.

Four key elements emerged in our discussion: Setting the Leadership Team; becoming Open & Honest; achieving EOS Mastery; and making EOS Sustainable. Today we address EOS Mastery.

We discussed how success with EOS begins with the leadership team mastering the EOS Foundational Tools™:

  • Accountability Chart: the key here is to keep working it until you get it right. One EOS company was on version 12 of their chart.  We say that EOS will “speed up the inevitable”…you’ll quickly find out if you have the right leaders in the right seats. Then it’s time to take action and make changes until the entire leadership team believes you’ve got it right.

Another learning was to then let go, stay in your lanes and let the function owners make decisions. This is easier to say than do. We realized that letting go is a process, and sometimes it’s easier than others to let go. Again, keep working on it and give the team permission to call out the Integrator, Visionary or owner if they’re out of bounds.

  • V/TO™: We agreed that this is the best tool to keep everyone on the same page with where we’re going and how we’re going to get there. Never lose an opportunity to share it with the entire team. Don’t skip sections; each of the 8 Questions is there for an important reason. If you’re struggling to decide on what goes in a box, you may have found something key that is holding you back. Get outside help if you need to and get clear on your vision and your plan.
  • Rocks: Choosing great rocks is both art and science. It’s a skill, so keep working to get better. We shared how important it is to be crystal clear on what completing the rock looks like and what the deliverables would be. Understanding our true capacity in a quarter is also critical to not choosing too many rocks.
  • Scorecard: Getting to a scorecard we love takes time. Our best practices include reviewing it regularly. Zero in on the handful of metrics that are most meaningful, and discard the ones that feel good to see but don’t tell us much as to the future performance of the business.
  • Level 10 Meeting™: Again, a work in process. We stressed the importance of finding the right leader for the meeting (it doesn’t have to be the owner or Integrator). IDS™ can be difficult to master as a skill, and we found that getting the entire leadership team to fully participate is key to solving issues once and for all, for the greater good of the company.

If you’re using EOS®, I hope you agree that it’s been a transformative and worthwhile journey for your business, and for you as a business owner. If you’re an EOS-using company in southeast Wisconsin, feel free to have your V and I join us for our next mastery session on Friday, November 2nd in Brookfield. Let us know and we’ll get you an invite.

Here’s to the journey!

Jim Palzewicz

Certified EOS Implementer™

Molly BarnesThe Journey to EOS® – Achieving EOS Mastery
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Welcome Back To Business Season

With State Fair over and Labor Day weekend just around the corner, it’s back to business season. Where on earth do you start to find motivation for the rest of the year just after saying goodbye to summer? Here are a few suggestions:

  • Schedule a team meeting. Talk about your wins, your challenges, what’s currently going on or coming up that everyone should know about. Getting your team together is a great way to create team synergy and get everyone on the same page. It also helps create momentum. Bring snacks, drinks, anything to make it fun.
  • Plan something to look forward to! This one always works for me, having something to look forward to will motivate you to get your “stuff” done.
  • Get some exercise. As entrepreneurs taking time for ourselves always gets pushed to the end of our to-do lists. Make the most of the beautiful weather and the lasting sunshine. You’ll be so glad you did.
  • Spend time evaluating your customer service with your team. This is a great exercise to schedule quarterly. Customer service should be under continuous improvement. As part of that effort, ask a friend to stop by and report on their experience, reevaluate the ease of maneuvering through your website, have a brief conversation with a client. They’ll appreciate that you respect what they’re saying.
  • Think about your own mindset. Are you in a great frame of mind to get back to business? Get excited for what’s coming and see beauty in the season. When you feel confident and really truly believe in yourself, that’s when the real magic happens!
  • Review your financials. Yes, we totally get it, most business owners want to avoid this one, but you’ll be glad you did in the long run! How are things shaping up for the rest of the year? What changes do you need to make?
  • If you want something to look forward to, we, of course, recommend registering to attend one of our many complimentary events and workshops! You’ll spend a few hours with fellow small business owners and entrepreneurs as you exchange challenges and ideas, and meet our coaches! We guarantee you’ll leave with at least 3 things you can go implement immediately, and breakfast or lunch is always included. What have you got to lose?

“Fall” in love with back to business season – your business, team, and customers will all be thankful for it! What is the one thing you are going to take action on today?

By: Molly Barnes

Molly BarnesWelcome Back To Business Season
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ActionCOACH Wins Global Community Impact Award

Elm Grove, Wis. – August 16, 2018 – ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin was awarded the Global Community Impact Award at the 2018 ActionCOACH Global Conference in Hamilton Island, Australia. The award was accepted by ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin’s Founding Partner Jim Palzewicz.

In 2017, ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin’s client’s generated 421 net new jobs and $923 million in revenue for Southeastern Wisconsin.

“This award means so much to us,” said Palzewicz, “as it is all about the results of our hardworking clients. We are passionate about growing great jobs in great companies here in southeastern Wisconsin.”

ActionCOACH was recognized with the Global Community Impact award in 2016 and 2017 as well. The 2018 Conference also marked ActionCOACH Global’s 25th birthday.

With offices in Elm Grove and Racine, ActionCOACH Business Coaching – Southeastern Wisconsin has worked with hundreds of business owners to take their companies from good to great, employing customized strategies and processes developed by ActionCOACH, the world’s largest business coaching firm, EOS® from the best-selling book Traction®, and Engage & Grow, a revolutionary activation system to improve employee engagement. The firm has won multiple awards recognizing individual coaches and its overall team performance, both from ActionCOACH’s international headquarters and from regional business organizations. More information is available by calling 262-790-1213 or via our contact page.

Molly BarnesActionCOACH Wins Global Community Impact Award
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The Journey to EOS® – Becoming Open & Honest

In my previous blog, I began to share learnings from our May 11th EOS® Users Group session. More than 30 Visionaries and Integrators™ (V’s & I’s) from EOS-using companies shared their experiences, learnings and best practices regarding the storms, reefs, and mutinies that can sink your implementation, and how to navigate your business through them to a safe port.

Four key elements emerged in our discussion: Setting the Leadership Team; becoming Open & Honest; achieving EOS Mastery; and making EOS Sustainable. Today we address becoming Open & Honest.

One of the most interesting and challenging parts of the journey as an EOS Implementer™ is watching a leadership team get open & honest. Open minded to other’s opinions and perspectives, transparent with where everyone is coming from. Honest in “just say it”, calling out the elephants in the room everyone sees but nobody wants to address. For EOS to be successful in your company, you must be open & honest, or you’re just going through the motions and preserving the artificial harmony everyone thinks they want but doesn’t solve anything or move the company forward.

Open & Honest comes from a leadership team trusting each other. We shared how trust-building is a process, and we’re never done. We must keep making deposits into trust accounts with each other, to cover the inevitable withdrawals that occur when we let each other down (that human being stuff!). Companies that have trust within the leadership team intentionally build trust-building exercises into their Quarterly and Annual Pulse meetings. Trusting teams like to spend time together and will create other opportunities to do so regularly.

Are you calling out the real issues? One way to know is if the dumpster fires get put out. If they keep coming back, you’re not yet dealing with the real issue. Transparency of the V & I is critical to the team’s willingness to solve the real issues. If the V & I are not willing to share critical information or “go there” themselves, it makes it difficult for the rest of the leadership team to do it. Being vulnerable as leaders and trusting the team to solve the real issues is easy to say, and takes time and attention to get there.

More to come on the other two aspects of the EOS Journey. If you’re an EOS-using company in southeast Wisconsin, feel free to have your V & I join us for our next mastery session! Let us know and we’ll get you an invite.

Here’s to the journey!

Jim Palzewicz

Certified EOS Implementer™

Molly BarnesThe Journey to EOS® – Becoming Open & Honest
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5 Tips for Better Customer Service

I have asked hundreds of business owners, “What makes your company the best at what you do?” Every answer I get includes, “We give great customer service.” Why do all business owners say they give great customer service yet one of the biggest complaints from customers is that they have received mediocre or bad customer service?

Here are 5 tips to make sure that the customer service you are giving EXCEEDS expectations:

  1. Look at your business from your customer’s eyes and experience – Start from the first point that the customer becomes aware of you (marketing) and work your way through the sales process and how you treat them after they’ve become a customer and beyond.
  2. Make it easy to buy from you – I walked into a big box cell phone store and the manager said that depending on my issue, the process could get complicated. Why is it complicated for me, the consumer? Buying from you and solving issues should be easy for the customer even if it means that it is more complicated for your business. If it is too hard to buy from you people will go elsewhere, which I did.
  3. Continuous Training on Customer Service – How often are you training, observing and providing feedback to your staff. It doesn’t matter if you serve external or internal customers, continuous focus and training will pay you back in reputation, referrals and increased sales.
  4. Give your customers more than they expect – Your customers may love what you do but they will expect you to get better and better the more they buy from you. What are you doing in your business to give customers more than they expect? They should not be just satisfied when doing business with you, they should be delighted.
  5. Treat your customers as if they were the most important part of your business because they are – Do your customers feel important? Do they feel valued? Remember, 68% of customers leave a business because they feel that no one cares. For those of you who remember the show Cheers, each time Norm walked into the bar, the bartenders and patrons called out, “NORM!!!” He even had his own stool. Where are the “NORM!!!” moments during your customer’s experience?

If you’ve read this and thought, “we have a lot of work to do”, the good news is that you can start by taking action today. Start with a smile and work your way through the list. If you feel as if you have a pretty good handle on the above, take another look. If your customers are the most important part of your business, they deserve the very best you have to offer.

By: Jackie Zach

P.S. – Have you listened to Coach Jackie’s podcast, “Your Business Coach Podcast” yet? You can find it on Stitcher, iTunes and iHeart Radio podcasts, or click here!

Molly Barnes5 Tips for Better Customer Service
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What Do You Do To Celebrate Your Company’s Successes?

I was at our last client quarterly planning session and after our clients were done creating their 90-day plans I asked the group, “How are you and your team going to celebrate when you complete your goals?” Everyone in the room looked up at me as if I had just told them they all had forgotten their pants. That one question told me that we as business owners do not spend enough time celebrating our successes.

There are many levels of celebrating and recognizing success and wins. Here are just a few:

  • Recognize small wins at all levels, company, team, employee, vendor, and customer at team meetings. – It doesn’t need to always come from the leader, it can come from anyone.
  • Ring a bell each time you get a new customer.
  • Bang a gong with each sale.
  • After the successful finish of each project – take a silly picture of the team shouting “We did it!” or something even more inspiring!
  • At the end of each week, take the last hour of the week to talk about wins for the week over refreshments and snacks.
  • How does your team want to celebrate big successes? If you don’t know or are not sure go ahead and ask them. Make it something that gets people motivated to push to the finish line.
  • As the leader, how are you going to reward yourself for reaching your 90 day, 1-year, and 3-year goals? A vacation with the family? A new toy? When things get hard, and they will if you’ve created goals that make you stretch, this is the thing that gets you back to focusing on the end game.

The point here is that success and accomplishments are to be celebrated if for no other reason than it helps teams to bond and makes business fun.

What is one thing you’re going to celebrate in your business today to have a better business tomorrow?

By: Jackie Zach

Molly BarnesWhat Do You Do To Celebrate Your Company’s Successes?
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4 Ways To Boost Your Business During Your Slow Season

It’s Summertime and I’m thinking about the holidays. That’s right, the holiday seasons is more than 6 months away but I start thinking, planning and talking to our customers about the holiday season. Right after the holiday season, I begin talking about the summer months and grilling season. Am I crazy or just crazy as a fox?

In my retail world, summer is the slowest of all the seasons. After being cooped up all winter people around here want to get out and enjoy the beautiful weather not spend time shopping. It happens the same way every year. I can almost predict it down to the week. In your business world, your busy and slower periods may be just the opposite. One thing I know for sure is that in most businesses it is easy to predict the seasonality or ups and downs in your business. Here are 4 tips to help you through those ebbs and flows:

  • Offer a product/service that people use during the slower times. As an example, if you’re a landscaper, offer snow plowing. If you’re an exterior remodeler, offer insulation that can be done when the weather isn’t conducive to outdoor remodeling. In my case, offer grilling ideas/classes in the summer and holiday gift giving ideas in the winter.
  • Start planting the seeds with your customers 6 months out so that when you’re focused on selling the customer has already been thinking about your product or service.
  • Pre-sell jobs for the next season – Is it hard to get on your schedule during the busy season? What would the effect on your business be if you pre-sold jobs for the next season to guarantee a place on the future schedule?
  • Do an 8-week cash flow forecast each week so you know and can focus on how much revenue you need to bring in to reach your revenue goals. By forecasting out your revenue and expenses you can be proactive and brainstorm ideas to bring more business in the door. There is nothing worse than having to react because you didn’t plan ahead.

Start planting the seeds now for your slow season so your customers are primed and ready to buy during slower seasons. The busy season will return again in no time!

By: Jackie Zach

Molly Barnes4 Ways To Boost Your Business During Your Slow Season
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