• January 2010

Welcome to BE INKANDESCENT

Welcome to Be Inkandescent Magazine,” the monthly online magazine for entrepreneurs, by entrepreneurs. Each month, our online publication will bring insights and observations from entrepreneurs in a variety of industries ranging from health care and human resources to books, education, finance, leadership skills, management tools, real estate, restaurants, wine, and more.

Each month we pick a theme that we believe will inspire, educate and entertain our readers. Past topics have included The Business of Happiness, Social Entrepreneurship, and Going Global.

In each issue, we also spotlight an Entrepreneur of the Month.. These business owners exemplify what it means to take risks, overcome challenges, and lead a team to success. He or she offers Tips for Entrepreneurs, and our monthly columnists share their thoughts, ideas and perspectives on the topic of the month.

We invite every entrepreneur to come up with stories that might be of interest to our audience and contact us with ideas. After all, the goal of any company is to have more people know about their products and services. We’d love to partner with you to spread the word.

Here’s to your success! — Hope Katz Gibbs
publisher, Be Inkandescent
president & founder, Inkandescent Public Relations

We Clear the Clutter With Organizational Expert Julie Morgenstern

JANUARY 2010 ENTREPRENEUR OF THE MONTH:
JULIE MORGENSTERN

Dubbed the “queen of putting people’s lives in order” by USA Today, Julie Morgenstern is an organizational and time management expert, business productivity consultant, and nationally renowned speaker. She’s also a New York Times bestselling author, having published five books that are reference guides featuring techniques and observations culled from her 20 years of experience as a consultant to individuals and companies.

She founded Julie Morgenstern Enterprises in 1989, and her common-sense approach to getting, and staying, organized has attracted the attention of Oprah Winfrey. In fact, in the last decade she appeared as a guest on Oprah nine times.

She has also appeared on CNN, The Today Show, CBS This Morning, and Good Morning America, and has been quoted in The New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal. Julie was also a monthly contributor to O, The Oprah Magazine. Her new monthly column premiered in the March 2009 issue of Redbook.

WHAT SHE DOES: The art of organization

Getting organized is a way of life for Julie and her team of trained organizational experts who work one-on-one with a wide range of clients to help them organize a home, office or schedule.

They “organize from the inside out,” which means her team needs to understand not just the goal of the project, but how the person in need of organizational therapy thinks and operates.

Once Julie’s team works their magic, an organization system is in place for the client that is easy to maintain because it is based on their unique goals, natural style and habits. For business groups, they design a system that is organic to the work culture, and easy for each individual to follow.

Satisfied clients include top managers at Time Warner, the CEO of Champion Health Associates, a professor at the Tuck School of Business, the owner of a Media Company in NYC, a documentary filmmaker, and countless freelancers, stay-at-home moms — and many entrepreneurs who know they need to be organized to be effective.

The bottom line, says Julie, is that in today’s “get it done yesterday” culture, being disorganized is a universal dilemma.

The Wall Street Journal published a story a few years ago with data indicating that the average U.S. executive wastes one hour per day searching for missing information in messy desks and files,” Julie explains. “The National Soap and Detergent Association assessed recently that getting rid of excess clutter would eliminate 40% of the housework in the average home. And 47% of the employees polled at the Connecticut-based work / life balance company LifeCare said time management was the number one source of stress in their lives.”

But there is a solution. Julie says it all starts with a plan.

HOW SHE DOES IT: SHED your stuff

Of course, she realized early on that she didn’t have the time to personally organize every business and private home in the country — or even her home base of New York City. So she began writing self-help books to aid the chronically disorganized in their quest to have a place for everything.

Her first title was published the first year she was in business: Organizing From the Inside Out: The Foolproof System for Organizing Your Home, Your Office and Your Life. She released a pack of handy organizational cards based on the book in 2002. Later that year came a sequel for organizationally challenged teens that Julie wrote with her daughter: Organizing From the Inside Out for Teens.

In 2004 came Time Management from the Inside Out, followed by Never Check E-mail in the Morning in 2005. In 2009 she released, SHED Your Stuff, Change Your Life.

WHY SHE DOES IT: A business born of necessity

Back in 1989, the year she started the business, Julie was working in theater and on the brink of divorce with three-year-old daughter Jessi to support.

“I had no money to speak of, but I knew that if I did nothing else I had to get organized,” she explains. “I was never one of those meticulous people, but I figured that if I could get myself organized — mind, body and apartment office — that I could do the same for others.”

She borrowed $100 from her neighbor Zoe, and took out a $26 ad in the publication that she knew would reach her target audience — New York’s favorite publication for parents, Big Apple Parent.

“Back in the late 1980s, everyone I knew kept it around for months,” Julie adds. “It was the go-to magazine for educated, dual-income families looking for parenting advice. I figured that was the place where I’d find my first clients.”

She was right. The ad, and the business cards and letterhead she bought with the rest of the $100 loan, turned into her first $500 job. She took $450 of it and bought a display ad in Big Apple Parent, and that led to dozens of other jobs, a staff, awards, speaking engagements, corporate training programs, the Organizing Institute — and her five books.

Her philosophy in SHED Your Stuff, in fact, is her guiding principle in fighting clutter, over-scheduling and breaking bad habits. SHED, she explains, is an acronym for Separate treasures, Heave the rest, Embrace identity from within, and Drive yourself forward. The book not only offers logical advice — but also includes easy-to-use timelines, thoughts on how to live in the moment, and quizzes and work sheets to teach how to shake free of the old, and take small steps toward creating the new clutter-free you.

Julie admits you may miss certain possessions or habits, “but the mental and physical space you gain from ridding your closet of decades old shoes and your drawers and filing cabinets of ancient memos and mementos will allow you to move forward. Honestly, who doesn’t want to do that?” — By Hope Katz Gibbs, publisher, Be Inkandescent

Click here to read her Tips for Entrepreneurs.

Organization Rules: 5 Ways to Achieve Business Success

Tips from Julie Morgenstern, renowned author, organizational guru, and owner of Julie Morgenstern Enterprises

1. Follow Eleanor Roosevelt’s sage advice: “Do not be afraid of mistakes, providing you do not make the same one twice.”

Julie says: “I live by this adage — except when I was worried about money and made the same mistake twice of taking on a client who I knew would be incredibly difficult. I didn’t listen to that little voice in my head that told me not to take on a client sure to give me grief and refuse to pay the bill.”

“I took her on anyway, and boy did I pay the price,” she laments. “It didn’t happen again until years later when I had a large staff working for me, and again I was concerned about making payroll. “I didn’t listen to that voice, and paid the price. But I made a pact that whenever I heard it again I’d see a big red flag with the words printed on it, ‘This one won’t pay.’”

2. Think like a consumer, and you will know what to do.

Julie explains: “When I was first starting out, I made an appointment with the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCOREwww.score.org), and asked how to price my services. My advisor told me to see what others in my industry were charging, and then charge $10 more.”

“I thought that was crazy, until he explained people have a ‘designer tag mentality.’ They believe the most expensive sweater or diamond or lawyer or doctor is the best, and who doesn’t want to own or work with the best?”

For her first job she charged the industry standard — $25-$50, at the time. But on the second job, with a little experience under her belt, she knew her service was valuable and charged $60. The customer didn’t blink. “Once I realized that she felt that way about pricing, I began putting myself in the shoes of my customers in every decision I made — and everything fell into place.”

Of course, in today’s teetering economy that philosophy is being tested. “But there is a sweet spot in pricing. Don’t go too high, but don’t go too low either. If you are clear about not underselling yourself, you’ll find the happy medium.”

3. Establish core values for your company, and stick to them.

Julie believes: “I want every project I touch to be valuable and useful for the consumer, so I never launch a new product, service or idea without first thoroughly testing it. I hate when I buy something that is half-baked, and never want to do that to my clients. It’s one of my core values, and I take pride in that.”

4. Business solutions should come from your bones.

Julie says: “I know some serial entrepreneurs who come up with businesses, or products, based on a thorough analysis of the market. They see a need, and fill it. It’s an intellectual pursuit for them, and plenty of people are successful using this approach. For me, I have to feel it in my bones.”

That’s how she knew how to begin her business, she says, write her books, establish her corporate training program, and create her Organizing Institute. “I’m one of those intuitive people who gets gut feelings about things. If I don’t feel it, I can’t do it. My advice to others who are instinctive is to follow that. It has never led me astray.”

5. Hire people who are as good in their fields as you are in yours.

Julie admits: “This is a tough one to master, because most entrepreneurs — especially those just starting out — want to do everything themselves. Or they think they don’t have the money to hire anyone to help them.”

This is a classic mistake, Julie says, for there are three core skills that every entrepreneur must have: the ability to develop useful products and services, financial management skills, and marketing savvy.

“It’s very rare for any one business person to have adequate doses of all three,” Julie believes. “It took me a long time to learn this, and my advice to other entrepreneurs is to take your time building your team — but do build one.”

“Not only do you need the emotional support, but having other professionals take on some of the important tasks frees you up to do what you love to do and what you do best.”

“After all, being able to do that one thing is why you went into business for yourself in the first place.”

We need to learn to set our course by the stars, not by the lights of every passing ship.”

– General Omar Bradley

Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”

– Thomas Edison

My task is really not to change myself but to become familiar with who I am.”

– Maureen Cook

Who cares if my glass is half empty or half full; I still have something to drink.”

– Optimism rules

We are not meant to resolve all contradictions, but to live with them and rise above them.”

– William Blake

Most people never pick up the phone and call. Most people never ask, and that’s what separates the people who do things from the people who just dream about them.”

– Steve Jobs

The great use of life is to spend it on something that will outlast it.”

– William James

Always be on the lookout for the presence of wonder.”

– E.B. White

Hope sees the invisible, feels the intangible, and achieves the impossible.”

– Helen Keller

A warrior cannot complain or regret anything. His life is an endless challenge, and challenges cannot possibly be good or bad. Challenges are simply challenges.”

– Carlos Castaneda

Just don’t give up trying to do what you really want to do.
 Where there is love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong.”

– Ella Fitzgerald

Nobody talks about entrepreneurship as survival, but that’s exactly what nurtures creative thinking.”

– Anita Roddick, founder, The Body Shop

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly,
 what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

– Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

The music is all around us. All you have to do is listen.”

– August Rush

To find what you seek in the road of life, leave no stone unturned.”

– Edward Bulwer Lytton

The man who acquires the ability to take full possession of his own mind may take possession of anything else to which he is justly entitled.”

– Andrew Carnegie

With ordinary talents and extraordinary perseverance, all things are attainable.”

– Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton

You must have chaos within you, to create a dancing star.”

– Frederic Nietzsche

Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking, ‘What’s in it for me?’”

– Brian Tracy

If you limit your choices only to what seems possible or reasonable, you disconnect yourself from what you truly want, and all that is left is compromise.”

– Robert Fritz

Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”

– Martin Luther King Jr.

Don’t follow your dreams. Chase them.”

– Richard Dumb

When you are asked if you can do a job, tell ‘em, ‘Certainly I can!’ Then get busy and find out how to do it.”

– Theodore Roosevelt

Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.”

– Eleanor Roosevelt

I don’t do very well without fear. There needs to be a part of me saying, ‘That’s going to fail,’ so I can prove myself wrong.”

– Harry Potter's Daniel Radcliffe

A man without a smiling face
 should not open a shop.”

– Chinese Proverb

We need to learn to set our course by the stars, not by the lights of every passing ship.”

– General Omar Bradley

Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.”

– Eckhart Tolle

The important thing is not being afraid to take a chance. The greatest failure is to not try.”

– Debbi Fields, Mrs. Fields Cookies

The gem cannot be polished without friction; nor man perfected without trials.”

– Chinese proverb

There is little success where there is little laughter.”

– Andrew Carnegie

History is a relentless master. It has no present, only the past rushing into the future. To try to hold fast is to be swept aside.”

– John F. Kennedy

Don’t wait for someone else to lead you to your right life; that privilege—and responsibility—is yours alone.”

– Martha Beck

Persist and persevere, and you will find most things that are attainable, possible.”

– Lord Chesterfield

You don’t go into a field that requires cracking people’s heads open or operating on something as delicate as the spinal cord unless you are comfortable with taking risks.”

– Dr. Ben Carson

The goal of Life is to make your heartbeat match the beat of the universe, to match your nature with nature.”

– Joseph Cambell

Happiness is an attitude. We either make ourselves miserable, or happy and strong. The amount of work is the same.”

– Francesca Reigle

Almost anyone can start a community, but it takes real talent and commitment to get people to show up and keep coming back.”

– Andy Sernovitz

Try not to become a man of success but rather try to become a man of value.”

– Albert Einstein

Challenge is a dragon with a gift in its mouth. Tame the dragon and the gift is yours.”

– Noela Evans

‎That which grows fast withers as rapidly; that which grows slowly endures.”

– J.G. Holland, novelist

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.”

– Anais Nin

Sometimes the dreams that come true are the dreams you never even knew you had.”

– Alice Sebold, The Lovely Bones

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”

– John Quincy Adams

The person who makes a success of living is the one who see his goal steadily and aims for it unswervingly. That is dedication.”

– Cecil B. DeMille

Anything not worth doing well is not worth doing.”

– Warren Buffett

The only person you are destined to become is the person you decide to be.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read.”

– Groucho Marx

Our deepest wishes are whispers of our authentic selves. We must learn to respect them. We must learn to listen.”

– Sarah Ban Breathnach

Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.”

– T.S. Eliot

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