From: Mike Keesee []
Sent: Monday, October 08, 2007 3:15 PM
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The Leadership News
Dear Mike,

Welcome to the first edition of the Leadership News.  How's business?  Are you pleased with where you are or are you just getting by?  Would you like to do better?  This newsletter will contain information that will help you achieve more of your goals (you do have goals, don't you?).  In the first article below, Helping you be more successful, I introduce myself and what JMK Associates LLC is all about.  The following article, The Best Way to Predict the Future is to Create It, explains the first step in learning to think strategically.  I hope these articles and those in following newsletters will contain knowledge you can use.  But remember, knowledge is not power, applied knowledge is.

Helping you be more successful
Greetings and Welcome
by Mike Keesee
JMK PIcture     Greetings and welcome to the first edition of The Leadership News.  Increasingly, many new college graduates and some re-treads (like-me!) decide the corporate world, like the old gray mare, "ain't what it used to be."  So they start businesses of their own.  Unfortunately, many aren't fully prepared for the challenges of running their own business.  Or, perhaps you find yourself in a leadership position - a position of authority, a place you've always wanted to be - but find yourself struggling to make things work like you know they should.

     After spending more than 30 years in various leadership positions with both small and large companies, I am just arrogant enough to think that I've learned a few things that might be helpful.  I founded JMK Associates for the sole purpose of helping SMBs (Small and Medium Businesses) achieve more of their goals and become more successful. 

     What I do is not rocket science.  Many business leaders simply do not know their own strength!  They fail to realize they have the potential to be more successful than they ever imagined.  How?  One way is by simply learning how to think and plan strategically.  Another is by becoming better leaders.

     Strategic thinking and planning is simply understanding where you want to go and developing plans to get you there (see article below on Visioning - future editions of this newsletter will describe other aspects).  A journey has two points, a beginning and an end.  You can't complete it without knowing both. As that sage old philosopher Yogi Berra says, "If you don't know where you're going, you just might end up somewhere else!" 

     Everyone has the potential to be a great leader.  Leaders are MADE, not BORN!  Being a good leader simply means getting results.  We can all learn how to be more effective.  Psychologists tell us we only use between 3% and 25% of our total capacity.  Just think, if you doubled the utilization of your capacity, you'd still only be using half!  What would being twice as effective mean for your business?

     That's what I'm about - helping you be more successful.  Future editions of this newsletter will briefly discuss various aspects as to how that is done.  Meanwhile, give me a call if you want to know more.  I'd love to explore with you how I might be able to help you reach your vision.  For more information, visit our website.



Mike Keesee, PMP

President & CEO

JMK Associates LLC

The Best Way to Predict the Future is to Create It!
by Mike Keesee 

Success Cup

"Good business leaders create a vision, articulate the vision, passionately own the vision, and relentlessly drive it to completion" - Jack Welch
"You got to have a dream, if you don't have a dream
How you gonna have a dream come true?" - Rogers & Hammerstein, South Pacific
     "Poppop, how much longer?"
     My three-year old grandaughter and I were in the third hour of a five hour trip and her endurance had just about reached its limit.  It wasn't the first time she had asked the question.  Actually, it was probably about the 100th time the question had come up.  Somewhat exasperated at the contiuing quizzing over the remaining length of the journey, I tersely replied, "Kaleigh, I don't know.  We'll be there when we get there."
     Silence for a few seconds, then, "Poppop, do you know where you are going?"    
     Do you know where you are going?  In your business - or life for that matter - do you have a vision, a dream - something worth working for, something that energizes you, excites you, or as Jack Welch says, "relentlessly" drives you?  Or, are you just working your tail off with no idea of where you are going?  Maybe you have your own business, or are in a position of leadership in an organization.  Have you defined what success looks like to you?
     Visioning is the first step in Strategic Planning and the beginning point in thinking strategically.  Strategic Planning means planning for a specific goal.  It defines the important and essential actions required to reach that goal.  Your vision defines that goal.  It is where you want to go.  It answers the question, 'What do you want to become?"
     A Vision has many characteristics.  First, it is personal.  If your vision does not excite you, then it is the wrong vision for you.  It must speak to you "where you live", to the part of you that gives action to the rest of you.  Your vision must be yours.  It is your dream.  It should be what you want.
     Second, it is vivid.  You must be able to articulate it.  Write it down.  It may be hard to reduce a dream into words, but it's important that you do so.  The exercise will help you clarify it, mold it, and solidify it so you can return to it later for inspiration and direction.
     Third, it should stretch and challenge you.  Nothing worth while comes easy.  If your vision is within easy reach, you are cheating yourself.  You can do better.  But it should not be out of reach.  A vision that is impossible to reach is a discourager instead of a motivator.
     These three characteristics are true whether your vision is for your personal life or your professional life.  Good leaders may even have one for each.  But particularly if you own your own company, they may be the same.  Nevertheless, creating a vision is the first step in realizing your dreams.
     The next step in Strategic Planning is defining your foundation, what you will "stand on" as you work towards the realization of your vision.  All of us have a set of values that guides us.  It's important that you understand what yours are as you plan to realize your vision.  We'll talk about values in the next newsletter.
"The very essence of leadership is that you have a vision.  You can't blow an uncertain trumpet" - Thedore Hesburgh, President of the University of Notre Dame
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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