7 THINGS I LEARNED ABOUT BUSINESS FROM RON PILEGGI
I met Ron Pileggi in 1983 when he hired me as an ad sales rep for the Tri-City weekly paper in Eureka. He struck me as an entrepreneurial visionary with a plan and a mission to change the community in a positive way via business. As owner and the founding architect of the Tri-City weekly newspaper, Ron modeled good business acumen. He showed me and each of us how to conduct business in a process that really valued people first. Here are the seven lessons he taught me and still teaches me today.
- Rule number one– People come first. People, relationships, and friendships are everything in business and in life. As the owner/operator of the Tri City, he modeled real care for employees, clients, vendors, people in his industry and beyond. Client relationships and personal care of others was at the forefront of everything Ron practiced in his business.
- Rule number two –Client relationships are invaluable, as Ron demonstrated in his actions and policies. He said that good leadership is all about being a good servant. He taught that good service sets the stage for good customer loyalty and customer relations. If you serve your clients and take good care of them–they will take care of you as well. Customers vote in dollars and purchasing. People really do buy from people they know, like, and trust. One thing he told us is to go out and make friendships–then people will naturally buy from you.
- Rule number three– Turn off the lights. He often told me if you want to be a manager you must act like a manager and be a great steward of your business. He challenged me to personally take good care of the resources entrusted to me. Things such as time, energy, and other resources were looked at in a new light. This taught me that I need to take ownership of all I do at work.
- Rule number four—Speech is powerful. Ron often stated that the power of your words is everything. When words are spoken with clarity and sincerity, people are really affected by what we say. He stated this in the context of selling but also in real life. When we say what we mean, and mean what we say–we are often unstoppable in business and in life. He taught me about the power of words and I’ve never forgotten this lesson.
- Rule number five—Be involved in your community; participate readily and joyfully. Ron modeled good community involvement in CASA and in Rotary and more. He was always the guy to say “yes” to someone with a good cause. He may not have been involved directly, but he gave freely of his resources. His involvement with the community modeled what we all need to do—to be involved with causes that we resonate with and are most passionate about. Find your cause or your passion, and then plug in your gifts and experiences and resources. You will add to the greater good in your community and beyond.
- Rule number six–Think creatively and out-of-the-box at all times. This means not only with business and selling, but also in the ways that help real live people. Be willing to bend or even break the rules as necessary and as it makes sense to benefit the greater good. “Be entrepreneurial in your problem solving”, he would challenge. He taught how to think creatively with regard to business problem solving and helping customers meet their needs. He often showed us and told us that if we meet others’ needs, they will meet ours as well. If you help enough people get what they need, they will help you do the same.
- Rule number seven–Be generous and celebrate people. His (in) famous Christmas parties displayed a great generosity and were always “over the top” in showing his appreciation for his staff. Ron would gladly put on the most extravagant party–even for an outgoing employee. He didn’t know selfishness. My father, Bob Hammond, called him “a prince of a man” in that he was always very generous with his employees, clients, and his community. We all were the better for that–so was he.
In summary, Ron was human. He had his moments like each of us. The one thing he did was to model a whole business person. He cared for others and was profitable at the same time. He found that balance between profitability and success and taking care of other’s needs; Ron was able to do both in splendid fashion. He left an indelible mark and positive legacy on this community for over 30 years and still does to this day. It is a pleasure and a privilege to know a saint and a friend in the caliber of a Ron Pileggi. If you ever have the opportunity to work for an owner-operator-entrepreneur of this magnitude, you will agree that it is an awesome and once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and experience. Thanks, Ronnie.
“80% of life is showing up.”
I was sitting with my friend at a recent networking meeting. As I was speaking to her, I realized how far she’s come in learning how to network, speak, and connect with people. She had developed her people skills and had really become rather professionally transformed. She had “bloomed” and come in to her own. She came from being a “wallflower” to become a gnarly networker–in a short period of time.
Let’s explore about how folks like you and I can become great networkers, speakers, marketers, and communicators. How do people go from good to great—often in short order? I have seen many people come into “bloom” and come to connect to their own experiences, gifts, and skills in their midlife. Many folks actually come into their “professional prime” rather late in midlife. Their talents were always there—just latent and waiting for the right conditions. It’s amazing to see others come into their own as they exercise their gifts, experiences, and talents to communicate freely with others. They basically find their “voice” and a new ability to joyfully participate in (professional and business) life. They bloom.
An example of this is my friend, referenced earlier, who was rather shy. Her background was not in business and she had very little business acumen. With application and time and work– she became a very proficient networker, speaker, and communicator. She had really “bloomed”. She applied herself and went out into the world and made herself learn to deal with, relate to, and even love people and become a proficient speaker, marketer, and “gnarly networker”. She is now rather fearless when it comes to groups, meetings, and even direct selling.
This “blooming” is much like akin to a flower; in their infancy they are small buds. Flowers, like folks, when they’re given their correct growing conditions, they bloom—often magnificently. When the rosebud is small and insignificant it has very little beauty and no scent. They’re actually thorny and not much fun to deal with. When it’s given the opportunity to develop, a rose in full bloom is the pinnacle of God’s creation. They’re lovely, smell great, and beautify any landscape or room. In like manner, when people encounter a midlife “bloom” –they often beautify the world with their gifts and “fragrance.” They may even smell and look better!
We actually have the ability to set the stage for our own professional and personal growth. We can set it up to bloom professionally and more brilliantly. With fertilization, light, correct nutrients and with the right location– a flower– or a person– can be magnificent in short order. Kind of like my friend–she put herself in a position to grow personally and saw the results rather quickly. In the same way, you and I can set the stage for growth. Know what you want. Show up. Be present. Help others. Serve. Be kind…
A lot of blooming is being exposed-being in the light. Being out there and exposed to the elements and to the nutrients needed to develop our “inner bloom.” We can actually grow quickly and more profoundly if we do it with intentionality. What is it take to be intentional? It takes a goal and focus and execution. It takes time management– it takes work and effort. Much of it is simply showing up and being relational. Zig Ziglar says it well—“You must circulate to percolate.”
Much of life is figuring out what it means to come into our own. How do you develop those in to your gifts and other skill sets that lie dormant in your life? Part of the answer lies in your DESIRE to grow and to expand and learn. Come out of your comfort zone. If you’re willing, then sometimes the execution of the necessary effort becomes rather easy. It’s often at that point that we can grow and come into our own and become of use to others.
This notion of being of use to others is the primary motivation. How can you and I be of use to our family, our community, and our world? The answer is coming to your own and finding the next level of “best”, going from good to great and then “blooming.” Be willing to pay the price and do what’s necessary and let nothing hold you back from becoming all you can be. Come into your own today. We have been waiting for you a long time. Be like that flower that comes out of the bud phase of their life into full fruition. This fruition gives life, color, smell, and sensory benefit all that experience it. Be that open flower today. Go out and set the stage then bloom in all your brilliance and glory!
|Dale Carnegie who wrote the book, “How to win friends and influence people” shared how he won a major sale by making himself memorable in a positive way. While sitting at dinner he started talking with a gentleman at his table. The man at his table spoke for four hours while only allowing Dale Carnegie the opportunity to speak for only about two minutes. After four hours the man stated to everyone, “Dale Carnegie is the best conversationalist I’ve ever met”. By being an active listener Dale Carnegie was not only portrayed as a great conversationalist, but the man instantly took a liking to Dale Carnegie. Since Dale was interested in him he was interested in Dale and later he provided Dale Carnegie with a great sales opportunity.By following the guidelines below, you’ll stand out in the crowd and make yourself more memorable to everyone you meet.
See Article link on “How to Avoid Connection Crushers”
REGRETS OF THE DYING
People grow a lot when they are faced with their own mortality. I learnt never to underestimate someone’s capacity for growth. Some changes were phenomenal. Each experienced a variety of emotions, as expected, denial, fear, anger, remorse, more denial and eventually acceptance. Every single patient found their peace before they departed though, every one of them.
When questioned about any regrets they had or anything they would do differently, common themes surfaced again and again. Here are the most common five:
1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.
This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made.
It is very important to try and honour at least some of your dreams along the way. From the moment that you lose your health, it is too late. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.
2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.
This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret. But as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.
By simplifying your lifestyle and making conscious choices along the way, it is possible to not need the income that you think you do. And by creating more space in your life, you become happier and more open to new opportunities, ones more suited to your new lifestyle.
3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.
Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.
We cannot control the reactions of others. However, although people may initially react when you change the way you are by speaking honestly, in the end it raises the relationship to a whole new and healthier level. Either that or it releases the unhealthy relationship from your life. Either way, you win.
4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.
Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.
It is common for anyone in a busy lifestyle to let friendships slip. But when you are faced with your approaching death, the physical details of life fall away. People do want to get their financial affairs in order if possible. But it is not money or status that holds the true importance for them. They want to get things in order more for the benefit of those they love. Usually though, they are too ill and weary to ever manage this task. It is all comes down to love and relationships in the end. That is all that remains in the final weeks, love and relationships.
5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content. When deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.
When you are on your deathbed, what others think of you is a long way from your mind. How wonderful to be able to let go and smile again, long before you are dying.
Life is a choice. It is YOUR life. Choose consciously, choose wisely, choose honestly. Choose happiness.
A Formula for Change—the Personal Strategic Plan
You would not dream of building anything of importance without some idea of what you wanted, would you?
The drawing or sketch you would create is called the blueprint. No matter how rough the Plan is, it will let your mind see what you want.
Your mind can then go to work developing the final plan that will get the project started. This is the only way the picture can become a reality.
Remember, a house is built one brick or board at a time. Your life is built the same way. If you don’t have a blueprint for erecting your project, just constructing at random, your building will never become anything more than a disarray of brick and wood. This would be disastrous for you, don’t you agree?
How many people do you know that live lives that look like that?
It is a fact that only 5% of the people in the greatest country in the world wind up their working days and retire financially able to take care of themselves. 95% of the people in the U.S. did not plan their lives; they merely accept what is given to them.
The final product for many plans is most often better than the first draft. This is because the vast greatest power of the mind pulls in all the facts and improves upon them. The part of the mind that does this is called the subconscious. It is, without a doubt, the greatest creation of the face of the earth. Not only is it the thing that separates man from animal, it is foundational to our creativity.
Have you ever gotten anything you really wanted? Of course you have! As a child you wanted things. You dreamed of your first Red Rider, bicycle, or Barbie doll, and behold, you got it! As you grew older, came a desire for a dress or a certain model of car. Up to that point, you dreamed it once and received a lot of things. Think about that.
- Mary Kay Ash
What will they say at your memorial? What would you want them to say?
THAT will be your legacy and it will be too late to start working on your life of significance at your memorial. You can begin TODAY to work toward a “Business and life legacy” and really make a positive difference!
How do you leave a legacy of positive business leadership? Who doesn’t want to leave a positive legacy? Leadership and legacy means being PROACTIVE…Take the lead and be the instigator!
Think about your personal leadership… See life as a chance to identify your purpose, position, passion, and posture and then begin to live as though your life makes a real difference—because it does! Living a life aware of leaving a business legacy can help you be more intentional and show your quality.
I worked for Ron Pileggi for 20 years at the local Tri City Weekly and he exemplified a business leader who left an awesome business and life legacy. Ron always made life about RELATIONSHIPS. He modeled how to really care about and serve others with his staff, customers, community and in his industry.
Staff- Ron modeled “servant-leadership” in that he really helped his staff wherever possible. He showed a boss who was involved on a personal level and really loved his staff by showing it in his actions.
Customers—Ron went the extra mile to really serve and meet needs of his customers. He even would give it away if it meant helping a fellow businessperson get back on their marketing feet.
Community-Ron was an example of a guy trying to make a positive difference in our community. Whether it was serving in Rotary, helping various non-profits, or just showing up at events, Ron was present and a servant of all.
Industry—As an industry pioneer and leader, Ron shared expertise in the Free Paper Industry of America freely. Not only was his publication multiple award winning over years, he gladly shared his trade success secrets with fellow entrepreneurs.
Ron left an amazing legacy across the board—Staff, Customers, Community and Industry. He intentionally modeled ‘servant-leadership” in the roles he served.
Here are 5 Easy “Knows” to a Great Life and Business Legacy:
1. Know Legacy–Understand and Know what a Legacy is–Begin to study what a legacy is and how we are all leaving behind something” in our lives we will be remembered for. Study the lives of those who you know have made a positive difference in their world.
2. Know Thyself–Begin to look at your life and what you are leaving behind and what you are now known for. What is it that people remember about you and your life? Be honest! Ask safe people who will give it to you straight and without apology. It is about what others know about you vs. how you perceive yourself. You may be really surprised …
3. Know Thy Legacy–Pick and focus on one aspect of your life that yields positive results and influences others in a significant way–Find your message, media, and platform and go to work leaving behind something meaningful to others. Live your life of significance with intention.
4. Know Thy Audience–Who listens when you talk? Who picks up when you “throw down”? Who are your peeps and those who love you? These are the ones ripe for receiving your legacy message.
5. Know Thy Media–Begin to find and understand your most comfortable platform and medium for delivering your legacy message. This can be written, spoken, crafted, or lived out loud in some way. Most folks begin with some writing or speaking—the written and spoken word has tons of possibility when leaving your life of significance. Blogging, public speaking, or writing your book all have potential for great legacy tools. All legacy begins with being a good communicator—be one!
It is time for us to get busy and become more intentional about leaving behind a life of business legacy and living with and on purpose. Each of us has a limited number of days on Earth (Grandpa Tom says, “No one gets out of here alive!”) and we need to be purposeful in how we live. Know legacy, yourself, your own legacy, your platform and your audience and you will begin to make a positive difference and leave an awesome legacy!
Life and business will have more meaning and so will you! Start living your legacy today—we’ll be glad you did.
10 Tips For Quality Family Life
Parents and their children are spending less time interacting with each other. As a result, many children are getting less personal love and attention than their parents did. American Demographics reported that parents today spend roughly 40 percent less time with their children than did parents a generation ago. To help families stay connected, below is a list of helpful family time tips. Keep in mind, quantity and quality time is important when choosing activities. So build memories around exciting events by keeping your family time creative and enjoyable. Print out the following tips as daily reminders.
1. Eat together & listen to each other. Most children today don’t know the meaning of a family dinnertime. Yet the communication and unity built during this setting is integral to a healthy family life. Sharing a meal together allows the opportunity to talk about each other’s lives. This is a time for parents to listen, as well as to give advice and encouragement. Attentive listening conveys a message that a person is really interested in another. It also imparts a sense of worth and helps develop trust. Therefore, listening is a critical link in successful parenting.
2. Read often. It’s important for parents to read to their children. The latest research indicates that reading to your children cultivates an interest for knowledge and stimulates language development. It also increases their attention spans and helps them become more curious. Look for books that your child would enjoy reading. After reading, ask questions about the content.
3. Do chores together. Part of what goes on in the home is the development of teamwork. Functional family life depends on the contribution of everyone. Assigning chores is the most productive way of teaching responsibility and accountability to your children. Doing chores with your child will help foster good communication skills.
4. Help with schoolwork. A great way to spend quality time with children and light a fire of learning is to help children with their schoolwork. A parent’s eagerness to help will cause a child to become more interested in school thus improving his or her grades. Regular trips to the library for school projects are an inexpensive and enjoyable way to spend time with children. Helping should begin with an understanding that children are responsible for homework. Parents are there to help their child get organized and to encourage them when they get stuck.
5. Start a hobby or project. Choose a fun activity that your child is interested in. Activities like cooking, crafts, fishing, or biking will make great hobbies that can open the door to exciting family time. Once a child learns a new recipe or is able to cast a lure accurately, let him or her take the lead with your supervision.
6. Play games. New technology has made video games more prevalent. As a result, many children are spending long hours in front of the TV playing computer programs. Parents should find creative ways to spark an interest in family-oriented contests such as board games or card games. This will give parents additional time to talk and nurture their relationship.
7. Plan a family outing. Sometimes getting out of the house is important. Hop in the family car and go for a drive. Prepare a picnic lunch and visit a local park. Take time to play catch or ride a bike. A stroll in the woods will help parents interact with their children. Also, a visit to the zoo or museum will spark a child’s enthusiasm and lead to lengthy discussions.
8. Encourage athletic activities. It is vital for children to exercise. Sports not only strengthen the body, but also build character and determination. Whether it’s a father pitching a baseball to a son or a mother and daughter nature walking, finding time for athletic events is important for a child’s emotional and physical development. This is a great opportunity for a family to interact.
9. Create a Family Time calendar. Since many parents have hectic schedules, time with children often becomes a low priority, whether intended or not. Post a calendar on the refrigerator and have parents and children pencil in special events. Knowing when you’re going to meet may also help you think of creative activities. Commit to keeping this schedule free from interruptions.
10. Pray together & attend a house of worship. Nothing is more special than taking a few minutes each day to pray with a child before bedtime. By explaining the purpose behind prayer, children will learn the importance of faith as the foundation for the family. Also, when parents go to religious services, they instill in their children a reverence for God. Churches can also offer invaluable support to families.
Hey, gotta minute?
We all possess valuable resources, but none is trickier or more valuable than time. Managing your time is THE key skill set in managing your life. Show what you do with your time and you show what your value system is all about. When leveraging time you will utilize and expand on core strength. If you can manage your time well you can accomplish almost anything. Using time incrementally, methodically, and strategically will help you stay on track and achieve your life priorities.
Personal productivity is only as limited as your proper use of time. Wise use of time maximizes and leverages all resources and helps you achieve your goals, objectives, and priorities. Good time management allows you to plan ahead and to use your purpose and passion with laser focus—nothing becomes impossible. Your productivity, as you leverage your passion through good time management, increases exponentially resulting in compelling accomplishment.
“Plan your work, then work your plan” is a great axiom. The “work your plan” part has to do with time management. Planning is great, but is useless without execution. Time management is all about the execution of your plans, goals, passions, and objectives.
Benjamin Franklin wrote, “Do you value life? Then waste no time, for that is the stuff of which life is made.” The value of anything that you obtain or accomplish can be determined by how much of your time, or your life, that you spent to acquire it.
The amount of yourself that you use up in achieving the goals that are important to you is a critical factor to consider, even before you begin. Only by discovering your innate strengths and developing and exploiting them to their highest degree can you utilize yourself to get the greatest amount of satisfaction and enjoyment from everything you do.
Deciding what you want to do, what you can do well, and what can give you the highest rewards for your efforts is the starting point in getting the best out of yourself.
Show me how much you love your family by how much time you give them. Show me a dad who loves his family and I’ll show you a guy who plans and spends time with them.
Personal Time Management
Your Strengths, Your Passions, & Your Money Making Opportunities
Where these three areas overlap is where you’ll find your best success opportunities. Envision these three areas as concentric circles overlapping. You will find it is the overlap area that has compelling possibility. You can leverage this discovery to create optimal motivation, success, and possibility…
Some people struggle with right position related to what they desire to accomplish from a personal point of view. Sometimes, people are still trying to figure out what they want to be when they grow up… therefore, you might consider developing a personal vision statement in narrative form describing the issues that are a high priority in your life.
Developing a personal vision statement is a great way to begin clarifying what is important to you. When you know about what is important to you it’s easier to prioritize daily activities.
Everyone’s personal vision statement should be unique. This is not an exact science. Develop a draft statement quickly. Then read a statement and see if it sounds good to you. If it does, consider it a good first draft. Keep improving your vision statement, over time. Approach this task as if you’re making soup. Have fun and enjoy the benefits of a clear life vision.
Stress and How You Can Deal With it
Living in Humboldt is no guarantee of a stress-free life. We can suffer as much or more than someone living in the “Big City”. Did I mention long Humboldt winters full of rain?
Many of us get stuck in dysfunctional and stressful patterns of acting and being. Much of it is dictated by the fact that we simply give up and let go. We give into our moods, tiredness, burnout, and stress. We get snarky and we stop caring about how we are impacting on those around us. We sometimes just quit.
Our being stuck in poor ways of response can take many forms such as poor time management, burnout, light or severe depression, poor sleep, poor health habits, ‘stinking thinking’, and general malaise.
There is too much at stake to allow ourselves to get sidetracked from healthy living, thinking, and well-being to get stuck in a depressive rut, or become disqualified from life. Healthy living has to do with healthy goal setting, actions, and strategic planning.
Got (healthy) Goals?
We need to know where we want to go, who we want to be, and what we want to do before we know if we’re on the right track or not. We need to be fit. To exercise, receive proper nutrition and allow for quality rest so we can adequately deal with the stuff of life. If our minds and bodies are not in reasonably good shape, how can we possibly enjoy healthy thinking or even healthy relationships?
We are trained to do too much for too little and for way too long. The result is illness; physical, spiritual, and relational. To get past this we need to learn how to let small stuff go and surrender things that we cannot control so we can begin to focus on getting unstuck in our personal lives. We need to control what we can.
Living and Thinking Healthy
Everybody wants health and well-being, but few of us are willing to pay the price for it. Managing stress, anger, depression, anxiety and everyday life is a pretty steep task. Healthy living has to do with the whole self: Spirit, Body, Mind, and Soul. If any of these are out of whack, so are we.
Other people are likely riding on your success and well-being. Why is it that it’s considered selfish to take care of yourself first in order to take care of those around you? What good are you to those you love if you have a stroke, heart disease, cancer, or mental illness? You cannot fail to plan in the long term and see the whole picture. You must take care of yourself.
Plan Your Work And Work Your Plan.
Regular physical activity substantially reduces the risk of dying of coronary heart disease, the nation’s leading cause of death. Physical activity also decreases the risk of colon cancer, diabetes, and high blood pressure. It helps control weight, contributes to healthy bones, muscles, and joints, and reduces falls among the elderly. Hey, even sex is better!
Fitness: Focus On the Big Three
Cardio—Conditions your heart, lungs, and muscles to work stronger and longer. Cardio work outs build endurance and burn off calories.
Strength training—Builds muscles and increases endurance. With leaner muscles, your body turns up the heat and burns fat much faster. Not only that, but when you’re stronger, you simply last longer and you get more out of your exercise sessions, thus burning even more calories.
Stretching—It helps you to do your cardio and strength training safely and without pain. Loose muscles perform at a higher level and reduce the potential for injury.
Physical Exercise In Mental Health Stress Relief
A variety of studies over the last decade are focused on the effects of exercise on the mind. These result show that exercise helps to reduce depression and anxiety. It also can increase short-term memory and improve intellectual function. This means that including breaks during your day could lead to enhanced productivity, greater time efficiency, and increased ability to handle stress; “Sharpen your saw.” These feel-good hormones help stimulate our bodies and give us a natural high; runners have reported this for years.
The following are some tips about starting and maintaining your own exercise program:
Start with walking. Walking is free and easy. In addition to the mental health benefits, walking is a weight bearing exercise and it strengthens bone and burns fat. Running does the same. You must walk before you run… really.
Look for a nearby fitness center or community pool and join it. Make a three time a week workout part of your personal schedule. Replace your Monday, Wednesday and Friday lunch with a one-hour workout. The point is scheduling it and then do it..
Just do something – Even if it’s for 10 minutes. Use the “10 Minute Rule” to get started: do 10 minutes of exercise, take a 10 minute break, and then do 10 more minutes of exercise.
You can do this. You gotta wanna and then just begin the habit of exercise. Build it into your life. You will be glad you did—so will your world.