From: Mike Keesee []
Sent: Friday, December 21, 2007 3:36 PM
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The Leadership News
Dear Mike,

In this Christmas edition of The Leadershp News, we look at an area of our lives that impacts everthing we do - our attitude!  In You've really got an attitude!, we review the importance of attitude, and why it may be the greatest inhibitor to our success - all without us realizing it.  Then in "The Best Way To Predict Your Future Is To Create It - Step 3!", we begin the process of developing a Mission Statement.  We'll spend three issues of The Leadership News talking about that.

Is it really Christmas time again?  Seems it comes around with increasing speed.  Christmas is really a special time of the year.  Despite the controversies over the placement of manger scenes and wishing everyone "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas", no one can deny the significance of the event we celebrate.  It changed everything.  And to those of us who believe, it has a very special meaning.  The thought that the God of the Universe, creator of everything, loves us so much that He came to earth to make it possible for us to be with Him forever, fills us with awe, wonder, and a grateful heart.  May the "God of wonder, God of light" bless you greatly in this joyous season.
Finally, please note:  December 31 is the deadline to receive your free book, Fail-safe Leadership.  Call me before the end of the month for your free copy.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year


Mike Keesee, PMP

President & CEO

JMK Associates LLC

You've really got an attitude!
Improved Results
by Mike Keesee
JMK PIcture    

I believe Einstein is credited with coming up with this definition of insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results!


Isn't that what we do many times?  We'd like to have improved results, but we fail to make the changes in our actions necessary to make it happen.  And that's what's required for improved results - positive behavior changes.


So how do we go about achieving positive behavior change?  Well, one way is to acquire more knowledge.  Knowledge is the "what" to do.  If I wanted to become an NFL quarterback, I'd have to acquire knowledge of football, the rules, the strategy, the schemes, the various offensive and defensive processes, who the teams are and how one goes about getting involved.


But would that be enough?  No, of course not.  I can be an expert in all aspects of football - know all the rules, know all the moves, know all the schemes, strategies, and processes - but would that make me a  Bret Farve?  Again, no, of course not.  What else do I need? 


How about skill - the "how to".  Skill can be learned, not easily most times, but it can be learned.  Bret has practiced for years to be able to do what he does.  He has honed his skills, acquired knowledge, and combined that with natural talent to become a future hall-of-fame NFL quarterback.


But is that all there is to Bret's success?  Is knowledge, skill, and talent enough? 


There is another ingredient - the most important ingredient of all because it is a multiplier of the other ingredients.  That all important ingredient is - attitude.  Bret is successful because he uses attitude to leverage all the other ingredients to take him as far as he can go.  And many times, it is not so much the knowledge, skill, and talent that differentiates the champion from the ordinary.  Two people can have the same degree of knowledge, level of skill, and amount of talent.  But the achievements of the one with the positive attitude will always exceed the other.

So, if it's that simple, why do we not all simply exercise that positive attitude to our advantage?  Well, good question.  Why indeed?
The answer lies way back in our early years.  What's the first word we learn as children?  Most times it's "NO"!  Why is that?  Because our survival depends on us learning to avoid that which will hurt us.  We are told to not talk to strangers because of people who kidnap children.  We are told to "not bite off more than we can chew" because during our developing years, it's important that we have more success than failure.  We are told not go where we are not wanted to protect us from unpleasant experiences.  But the impact of all this negative conditioning stays with us all our lives.  No one ever tells us that it's now ok to talk to strangers, stretch ourselves with ambitious undertakings, and go where ever we please.
The most dangerous aspect of this conditioning is that most of it is at the subconscious level.  And if you don't believe in subconscious conditioning, let me ask you a question.  You are going down the road driving 45 mph in a 45 mph speed zone.  You see a blue light ahead on the side of the road with a car stopped in front of it.  What happens to your right foot?  It comes off the accelerator.  Why?  You weren't speeding.  It's because of unconscious conditioning.  You have such a fear of getting a ticket, your foot acquires a mind of it's own.
As much as 85% of our conditioning occurs at the unconscious level.  But it get's worse.  Over three fourths of that unconscious conditioning is negative.  No wonder we have a tendency to see the glass half empty.  No wonder the first thought that comes into our minds when introduced to a change is - "What can go wrong?". 
To achieve positive behavior change requires a change in our attitude.  We must change a negative attitude into a positive one.  It can be done.  In the next issue of The Leadership News we'll discuss how.


For more information, visit our website.



The Best Way to Predict the Future is to Create It - Step 3!
Mission Statement
by Mike Keesee 

Success Cup

"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step!"  Chinese proverb
"Destiny is not a matter of chance.  It is not a thing to be waited for; it is a thing to be achieved." William Jennings Bryan
We have formed the basis for creating your future, i.e., your Vision Statement and determined the core values that will govern your journey.  We now come to possibly the most difficult part - determining where you are right now, and what the first step towards your ultimate vision needs to be.
This first step is called a Mission Statement.  It usually looks out no more than a year and defines what you want to accomplish in the next twelve months that is in line with where you ultimately want to be as stated in your Vision Statement.  It is nothing more than a list of goals you want to accomplish during the coming year.
But before you can effectively compile that list, you must determine where you are - both in relationship to your external business environment, and to your internal organizational environment.  Today, we will look at what's involved in an external assessment.  January's newsletter will look at what's involved in an internal appraisal.  Then in February, we'll finally get around to the Mission Statement.
Market Segments
The first action in an external assessment is understanding your market.  What market are you in?  Where are your potential buyers?  What geographic areas are you going to target?  One common mistakes of many businesses is trying to be all things to all people.  Targeting a market in which you can excel is crucial to your success.  A rifle shot packs much more punch than a shotgun blast!
Competitive Analysis
Next, examine your competitive situation.  What do you do best?  What differentiates you from your competition?  Are you less expensive?  Is your product or service of higher quality?  Do you provide better service?  What benefit do you offer your customer that will cause him to choose you over your competition?
Trend Analysis
Finally, trend analysis keeps you from being surprised.  What's happening in the market place that will impact your business - for good or bad?  What's different today about the markets you serve and the markets served by your customers?  What will be different tomorrow?  How can these changes influence the products and services you offer?  What could happen that could adversely impact your business?
Thoroughly analyzing and understanding external influences on your business will add immeasurable value to your strategic plan.  Understanding the environment in which you do business is crucial to your success. 
Next month, we'll look at what's involved in an internal appraisal - what do you have to work with? 
Free Book
All good leaders read.  I have a book I'd like to give you - free!  The title is Fail-safe Leadership.  All you have to do is call me between now and December 31, 2007 to receive your copy.  My phone numbers are 770 943 3657, or 678 773 8036.
Mike Keesee
JMK Associates LLC
770 943 3657
678 773 8036 (cell)
770 943 1450 (fax)

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