Your Secret Sauce to Success: cooking
Lessons from Boston

Last week, I spent 4 days in Boston. It is now one of my new favorite cities. Great city to walk, the food was awesome, the weather was perfect. And, the reasons I went turned out to be great. It seems whenever I go somewhere, especially new, I pick up some lessons for my business and life. Boston was no different. I’m happy to share them with you.

The reason for my trip was to meet with my Mastermind group created out of Alan Weiss’s consulting community. Alan was personally meeting with us for a day. My colleagues are from all over North America and are world-class consultants in their own rights.

Lesson #1 – You have to be present. By present, I mean face to face. Technology is a wonderful thing, however nothing beats personal interaction. Out of the group of six (including me), I had never met three of them in person. We had spoken by conference call, emailed, and dialoged on an online forum. But, we’d never met in person. The opportunity to meet in person before our session with Alan, to have dinner together, to relax, and to have fun, was simply priceless. It made the next day more meaningful and valuable, and it will make the rest of our journey together more rewarding.

When was the last time you dropped in to see your clients face to face?

Lesson #2 – Be flexible and creative. For as much as I believe in Lesson #1, things do happen. One of our group, who lives on the West Coast, injured her back the day before she was set to leave. There was no way she could do a 5+ hour flight with a bad back. But, instead of having her miss what was a very important session, we were able to Skype her in for the entire day-long meeting. She could see us all, ask questions, and felt part of the group. Even when my iPad flipped her over, it didn’t hurt!

Find a way to leverage your resources to be inclusive, save time, and provide value in a real-time manner.

Lesson #3 – Mix business with pleasure. I knew this already, but it was cemented here. My college-age daughters go to school in Pittsburgh, so I invited them to join me. They came early and we enjoyed some great meals, a trip to Fenway Park, and even included them with my colleagues for dinner. They were a big hit with my friends, and they enjoyed being part of my “business” life, too. In addition, after they left, I stayed an extra half day to walk the city, explore the history, and enjoy the vitality of Boston. I spent almost 3 hours walking with my History Channel app guiding me to historical spots.

When business takes you someplace new and interesting, find a way to arrive early, or stay late to enjoy where you are. When was the last time you did that?

Lesson #4 – You can’t be brilliant by yourself. Again, not a new concept, but sometimes you need to be reminded. Each one of us throughout the course of our daylong meeting, found several different ways to enhance our practice, provide more value, and improve our lives. These all came from a suggestion or comment from someone else. We often can get sucked into a myopic gaze, where we end up being our worst enemy when it comes to innovation and creativity in our own business. Having regular contact with a mentor, coach, or support group is critical to new idea generation and success.

Where do you go for help? Do you have a mentor, coach, or group to help you be brilliant?

Lesson #5 – When you’re in Boston, swing by Sonsie on Newbury and buy the Butternut Squash Pizza. You won’t be sorry. I know this is more of a tip than a lesson, but you just gained a little slice of food value. Go with it!

Do you take time to slow down and enjoy where you are in the moment? Sitting by myself, eating lunch, and enjoying the world go by was refreshing> When was the last time you rewarded yourself?

Fenway Park with my girls










Butternut Squash Pizza from Sonsies












© 2012 Dan Weedin. All Rights Reserved

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