business motivation

It goes beyond selling an idea…

People used to say, it is not about selling a product/service, but about selling ideas.

I beg to differ.
As a coach, ideas are just ideas. Ideas are formed in the head, and many people have many different ideas.
If you are selling just an idea, it is nothing inspirational. Ideas are a dime a dozen. Let’s dig a little deeper, shall we?
How about: selling a dream?
Better! Dreams are big, and dreams inspire! Martin Luther King sold his dream of, “I have a dream, that one day…” in his famous speech, that to me, is still one of the best ever “sales copy”, if I may do a huge disservice and compare it as such. Dreams are people’s aspirations, and galvanize them to act in small measurable steps towards fulfilling the big goal.
Now, you can really see what I am driving at.
As I prepare to run my first ever “accountability group”, I realize that most people do not lack ideas. They also do not lack dreams. What do they really, really lack is having the motivation and discipline to push through and take concrete small steps towards the big goal.
That is why, it should be selling a journey/experience.
You should go deeper than just selling ideas, and not even stop at dreams, but be selling the journey that the potential prospect will be embarking on you. Most people get it wrong. The customer’s journey only begins after they have made payment. It doesn’t end there!
Hence, if you run a business, it is high time that you relook at how you structure your business. The mindset and thinking that goes behind every process and every member of the team. If you are selling just an idea, you are shortchanging yourself. If you are selling a dream, go deeper. Focus on the whole customer experience journey, and you will be able to build long term, sustainable customer relationships.
As a coach, it is also my responsibility to create that fantastic customer experience journey. I guide the person to walk this journey of self-discovery and growth.
If this message resonates with you, do feel free to share it. This has to go out there!

Champions! At long last!

My love for football started during the Malaysian Cup days, in the nineties, and I started watching the English Premier League. There was this club, called Liverpool, which intrigued me because of her rich history and passionate fans.
Liverpool was on a slow downward spiral, and when I started supporting Liverpool in 1997, she was always playing bridesmaid to Manchester United, who had a rising managerial star called Alex Ferguson.
Each year, I would hope that Liverpool would end the title drought, but each season ended in a heartbreak and the managers came and went.
Nevertheless, Liverpool fans like myself never stopped believing that we would one day win the champion again. We kept the faith and hope.
With each new manager, a new era was promised, but most ended in pain and dreams shattered. Roy Evans, the last manager of the “Boot Room” era, left and was replaced by the French Gérard Houllier. This heralded in an era of foreign managers.
Liverpool almost went into administration, when American owners Gillette and Hicks loaded Liverpool with interest debts in a leveraged buyout. I almost lost a dear friend of over a decade. But we survived.
When FSG took over, and brought in Klopp as the manager, there was hope once again. But cautious hope. Too many times, the hope ended in desperate despair.
But this year, in a very unusual climate, we finally made it! Champions! It is a very surreal feeling, as every year prior I had a certain vision of how I would celebrate the title win.
Nevertheless, being crowned champions calls for a celebration. But I just felt… Calm? I am looking forward to next season, of repeating the same feat again, in what is undoubtedly a new and changed environment.
Hopes and dreams will never die.
If you feel at the lowest now, just like I did when Liverpool almost went into administration, don’t give up. There will be people rooting for you, cheering you on.
You’ll never walk alone. This is why I deeply support Liverpool.

motivation personal branding

Thought Leadership And How It Can Help Our Personal Brand In This New Normal

Thought leadership is not just about being known for something… That’s too self-serving and myopic.

Thought leadership is about being known for serving, for meeting the needs of your target audience.

Understanding this key difference will help us a lot in our personal branding process. It is a cornerstone of our personal branding!

I started off on my personal branding journey thinking that establishing thought leadership is just about getting known for my areas of expertise. As a coach focusing on 2 areas: helping people in the areas of personal branding and empowering them with a positive mindset to become happier in life.

However, creating content (for the sake of it) soon became a bit of a drag and a burden… I wasn’t enjoying it at all.

Then I came across this reminder about what thought leadership is really about, and I had a great revelation! Or rather, it is like a smack on my head…

Let me offer you a step by step guide to building your own thought leadership.
1. Know what problems and pain your target audience is facing
You will have to be crystal clear on the exact problems and pain that your target audience is facing. 
If I ask you, can you list down exactly what problems and pain do your target audience face, would you be able to answer with clarity and certainty?
If you don’t know what is the exact problems and pain, then do your research.
Ask your target audience exactly what they will pay money to solve. 
But you will also have to bear in mind that sometimes people don’t know what they want.
This is where the top leaders have an unfair advantage: they are intuitive and creative, and act fast to enjoy the first mover’s advantage.
In this “New Normal”, fear and survival is at the top of most people’s minds.
But different demographics will experience fear for different reasons. You have to figure out exactly what your target audience is worried or fearful about.
2. Come up with a solution to address both the problem AND the pain
You have to have the necessary expertise and ability to come up with a creative solution to the problem and the pain. 
But bear in mind this: people always pay money to address a pain.
People don’t know that they have a problem; until someone else comes to them with a solution after they have suffered enough from the pain that the problem is causing.
Can you innovate and create a solution, if there is nothing existing in the market?
What kind of solutions do people need in this “New Normal”?
How will your solution still remain relevant in spite of the changes in consumption behaviour?
Can you tap on resources to help you create a solution?
If you can come up with a solution, congratulations!
3. Offer your solution strategically
They say that if you are good at something, don’t do it for free.
I don’t fully agree. Out of the abundance of your heart, you can and you should be generous.
But there is something you need to be aware: be highly intentional when offering something for free.
Make sure that your seeds are sown on good, fertile ground, that can produce fruit.
Don’t ever give away something to someone that will never ever appreciate it.
(Of course, I have done that many times before, that is why I am sharing here, in the hopes that you don’t make the same mistakes as I do).
For me, I only offer free coaching to people who absolutely cannot afford it. For example, the less advantaged in society. It is a way for me to give back to the society, and I am really happy doing that.
One of my core values is this: it is more blessed to give than to receive. Even so, I am aware that I have to be a good steward of my resources, and choose to sow my seeds wisely.
4. Be consistent
Be consistent in honing your expertise in the niche area, as well as improving on the solutions that you can offer. 
Being consistent also means that you don’t practice double standards. What you preach, you practice. 
People see what you do more than hear what you say.
This is especially true in the “New Normal”, when digital communication plays a bigger role in our personal branding.
A quick Google search can often uncover things that can prove your character’s integrity, or lack thereof.
If you need some clarity, feel free to reach out to me here.
17 John C. Maxwell Quotes and Lessons on Successful Leadership
encouragement motivation

What can we do to survive Covid 19 and beyond?

Grab Singapore lays off 5% of her staff, after One Championship announced a 20% global reduction in headcount in spite of having a 9 figures balance sheet…
This comes in the wake of the mini controversy stirred up by Straits Times’ survey of what’s essential vs non essential services…
Are you worried? Should you be worried?
What should we do? One of the things that I have been doing is picking up relevant skills and using social media to increase my presence and build my network.
Currently, I am getting my certifications in ICF and NLP, so that I can better serve my existing and future corporate clients. My clients and I have also adjusted well to online coaching, and I would urge you to incorporate online touch points, if you have not already done so.
Build up your personal branding, and if you are a biz owner, that of your company branding too. But always start with your personal branding, as your business is just your “vehicle”.
Many people got too attached to their vehicle, and when the tsunami hit, they got trapped inside their vehicles.
Don’t be another mortality!
If you have been investing time into learning and upgrading, you might want to translate some of the information into concrete action. Please find a mentor to help you with clarity, if you are lost or don’t know how to put your plans into place. You can drop me a pm too, to bounce ideas off. I will be happy to help you! 😁
Stay positive always. Surround yourself with people who are encouraging and will spur you on. Be careful of “crabby” people in your life, who might wish you some success, but begin to put you down once you have climbed past them.
I am certain that you can make it through. You are not in this alone, and there are people who are willing to help you along. You just need to ask them.
After all, what doesn’t break you, will make you stronger.
encouragement fear find your why motivation

How to get out of your comfort zone in 2020

Staying in our comfort zones is one of the biggest reason why we can’t find motivation to achieve our goals and dreams.

Do you remember the story of the frog in the pot?
Yes, he got too comfortable in the pot of gradually warming water, and before too long, he was cooked in the pot. I haven’t actually tested if this is true… but you kind of get the idea.
Frog in a pot

If Covid-19 hasn’t already affected you by now, you must be living in a different planet!

I have seen how some of my friends closed their businesses, or have their income severely affected by the crisis. I myself have also closed down one of my businesses due to the changing landscape.
Here are some steps which I have used to help myself get out of my comfort zone:
1) Be crystal clear about your “Why”
Write down what are your goals in the near future (2-5 years) and possibly a longer term goal (10 years). 
Many people aren’t sure of why they are doing what they are doing, and this stops them from putting their 100% behind what they do.
This is also why work feels like a dread and not a passion.
2) Find out the obstacles that prevent you from achieving your “Why”
Be clear about what are the areas of growth that you need to achieve, in terms of your mindset and skills, and perhaps even the value of your network.
Obstacles make us feel uncomfortable.
They stretch us and force us to grow.
Focus on how it feels like to overcome these obstacles.
Focus on the “pleasure”, and not on the “pain”.
What are some of the “negative” self-talk that you have? Or the negative thoughts?
It is time to thrash those self-talk and thoughts!
3) Break it down
I love to trek and climb mountains. Every hike is a minimum of 8 hours, and takes a lot of effort to prepare.
One of the trick I used is to break down the hike into chucks and check points.
Similarly, achieving our goals requires us to break it down into smaller chucks, so that we will not get discouraged even before we begin.
How then do you climb Mount Everest?
That’s right, one step at a time!
4) You will never walk alone!
Yes, that’s right. 
When I go trekking, I seldom do it alone. I always do it in a group, with my spouse and my friends.
Of course, on some trips, we have guides as well.
Similarly, find a mentor and find an accountability partner to help you along.
This will shorten your learning process, as well as give you encouragement and will to keep on keeping on.
5) There will be failures along the way…
But with every lesson, you learn to become smarter and stronger.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. 
If you don’t make any mistakes, it means that you have not tried enough.
The failure of my business taught me many things on how not to run a business.
Yes, it was painful and emotionally draining, but it also taught me many valuable lessons.
6) Learn to enjoy the journey!
Have fun along the way! Learn to enjoy the birds and the bees. 
Breathe the fresh air as you embark on your journey, and treasure the many unique and interesting experiences that you encounter along the way!
Ask Yuantai