How the Power of Gratitude Elevates Others to Achieve More

Appreciating others is something we are born to do. You’ve heard of thinking big? Sometimes “thanking big” is just as important to your self-growth.

Not only does appreciating wonderful things others do for another person, it helps ourselves as well. We’re raised to thank people, orally and in writing, whenever they do something for us. For example, in my first few years of business I wrote over 2,000 thank you notes to people I met and worked with, whether or not they turned into a paying client or significant strategic vendor. Not only did it make an impression on them, but it made me feel good too. As humans, gratitude is instinctive. Maybe that’s why there are so many holidays built into the calendar year where we can show those (like our mothers, fathers, veterans and leaders) just how much we love, respect and thank them for all they’ve done for us!

People we appreciate come into our lives every day, and sometimes when you least expect it. For example, Ashley. Ashley was just a senior marketing major at Aurora University when she became my first intern. She was a calm, mild-mannered, introverted marketing major desperately looking for some experience in the field. Although I am quite different in personality (nobody would ever describe me as an introvert), we clicked instantly. She was highly recommended to me by one of the professors at Aurora and introduced herself at a college fair. Soon she joined me and my husband Juan Pablo (JP) in running our scrappy little marketing firm in our early days.

JJR Marketing, had been growing steadily for the past few years but was now beginning to pick up steam quickly. So much, in fact, that we had moved out of our home into an artsy little office, decorated cheerfully in lively purple accents and our corporate logo, just steps from our home at the time. Ashley, JP and I all had our own space in the office. I was like the mother bird, flying from the nest each morning to attend meetings and business development opportunities to bring new clients to my team!

At first Ashley worked with us, as most college interns do, around her class schedule. From winter through spring of 2013, she was at the office whenever her schedule allowed. She answered the phones and helped with project management, always being cheerful, dependable and invested in the success of the company.

Managers, in particular, have to take care to always be appreciating others, so from day one I expressed gratitude to Ashley for her contributions to the company and thanked her for helping JP and I fulfill our dreams. Quickly, she began to visibly flourish at JJR. She was using her talent for organization, teamwork, creativity and communication in every aspect of her job, from her work with us to clients, vendors, new employees, etc. As we became more and more successful and Ashley graduated, she became our first full-time employee. She kept up with our rapid expansion and as her responsibilities increased, so did our gratitude.

With Ashley on board, I was freed up to bring in more business and expand our team. We were able to grow our team from four to twelve in one year. It was time to implement a project management system to keep track of our rapidly growing client base. Ashley stepped up to the challenge and researched and onboarded an easy-to-use, customizable, scalable system that serves us just as well today, even as our staff and projects continue to increase.

JP and I discussed what we could do for Ashley, and what would be the best way to show her our trust and appreciation for all she had done for the company, as well as our hope that she would keep doing it! After all, what is the most important way of appreciating others? In my mind, it is showing how you believe in them and respect their contribution to your life. It’s also about showing encouragement to bring them wholeheartedly into your mission, even if it wasn’t necessarily the original plan to do so.

As we considered our vision for Ashley with our company, we realized she was already functioning as more than just a teammate; she was more of a partner. So, we decided to make it official. In 2017, we asked Ashley to become a minority partner in JJR Marketing, Inc. She was as surprised as we were. It was never our grand plan to have another partner in our business but we felt it was the right thing to do. It was our way of “thanking big.” After all, if you’re going to show your appreciation for someone why not do it in a big way? The opportunity to “thank big” is just another thing to be grateful for!

 

Jacqueline Camacho-Ruiz is the CEO of JJR Marketing (www.jjrmarketing.com) and Fig Factor Media LLC (www.todayslatina.com), founder of The Fig Factor Foundation (www.thefigfactor.org), author of eight books (www.jackiecamacho.com), international speaker, and pilot. Jacqueline speaks to hundreds of audiences about marketing, servant leadership, finding your passion, and achieving success in business. She has addressed the United States Army, BP International, United Airlines, Allstate, and Farmers Insurance among other corporations to share her inspiration.

If you or an organization you know needs as speaker, please get in touch with us at http://www.jackiecamacho.com/contact.

Advertisements

Thought Leadership and its Correlation to the 10,000-Hour Rule

I was recently asked to participate as a contributor to the book Design Strengths: Applying Design Thinking to Individual and Team Strengths by John K Coyle, an Olympic silver medalist, and innovation professor at Stanford and Kellogg Graduate Schools who is known for his thought leadership. As I was becoming familiar with the book, one of the chapters really resonated with me as I analyze my own journey in marketing over the last 15 years. You see, I have been doing marketing for almost half of my life and been an entrepreneur for a third of it.

The 10,000-hour rule states that you must invest at least 10,000 hours in an area of interest in order to become an expert. As I was analyzing my career and the passion that I have to help others through marketing, I could not help but start doing the math. I was shocked. With a simple match equation, I was able to come up with 33,280 hours that I have invested in my field of marketing. Wow!

Since 2010, I have published 11 books, written over 100 articles and recorded over 70 videos both in Spanish and English, published over 80 podcasts/radio shows, and produced over 20 TV show segments, created two electronic guides for authors and speakers, created three decks of cards for marketing, journaling and authors, created a productivity journal, came up with three products, co-designed a board game and had more than150 media interviews for print and national TV and radio.

Then, I realized one thing…

…Why have I been producing content in multiple ways for as long as I can remember?

There is one simple reason: my passion for my career and my industry.

You see, producing content is easy, especially now with the access to the world through the internet. Now anyone can become a media outlet by simply logging into their social media account and broadcasting their message. It is access to the world that must be used carefully. It is an awesome responsibility to share what you are passionate about while elevating others through your message and ideas at the same time. The ability to align your passion and your knowledge to create a service for others, coupled with relentless commitment and focus, will ensure that you become known for your thought leadership.

To recap, to become known for your thought leadership you must:

  • Align with your passion
  • Invest focused time on that passion
  • Commit to the distribution of knowledge year in and year out
  • Create tools for others to accelerate their learning
  • Inventory your knowledge
  • Share the knowledge with others
  • Invest at least 10,000 hours

Start becoming a thought leader today!

 

Jacqueline Camacho-Ruiz is the CEO of JJR Marketing (www.jjrmarketing.com) and Fig Factor Media LLC (www.todayslatina.com), founder of The Fig Factor Foundation (www.thefigfactor.org), author of 10 books (www.jackiecamacho.com), international speaker, and pilot. Jacqueline speaks to hundreds of audiences about marketing, servant leadership, finding your passion, and achieving success in business. She has addressed the United States Army, BP International, United Airlines, Allstate, and Farmers Insurance among other corporations to share her inspiration.

If you or an organization you know needs as speaker, please get in touch with us at http://www.jackiecamacho.com/contact.

Positive Energy: The Key to Making Things Happen

When someone has positive energy, it’s obvious. Aside from getting a lot of things done in a short amount of time, there is something special about them. There is a glow, an almost cosmic force that appears to be driving them forward. People like this hear wonderful compliments like:

“Everything you touch turns to gold.”

“You’re an angel in my life.”

“I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for you.”

These words of praise are spurred by someone who truly understands what they have to give, and then gives it freely. More than likely, these words are also received by someone with a great deal of happiness in their life.

High-energy people have a lot of things in common….

Flow.

Recently, one of our clients, Olympic silver medal speed skater John K. Coyle, explained the concept of “flow” which is a phenomena that occurs when your heart’s desire and your thinking align in a special way towards a mission. You’ve probably experienced periods of “flow,” when you are so happily engaged in what you are doing that time flies. You look up at the clock and can’t believe how quickly time has passed. Or, time figuratively sits still because you are so “in the moment. You feel like you don’t need anything else. It’s how he feels when he is practicing his sport, and how he felt when he realized he had won the 5000 meter relay competition at the Lillehammer Winter Olympics.

Positivity.

High-energy people are positive. It is what moves them forward and enables them to help and motivate others. When it comes to energy, positivity is like gas in the engine. It helps make things roll for you and other people around you. Giving it away starts someone else’s motor running! I’ve had firsthand experience with this, especially the time I met an Ecuadorian couple who was having trouble with their fear of failure. Since my own experience succeeding as a newcomer in the country was so positive, I was able to bring that positivity to them. The next time we met, I barely recognized them. They looked and acted differently because they had adapted an attitude of gratitude  to fuel their passions.

Clarity.

As you may know, I recently became a sports airplane pilot, and one thing I will now forever be keenly aware of is the weather. They say that bad pilots go to hell where it is constantly foggy. That’s because you can plan the perfect flight, know that the wind is optimal and that 5,000 feet above, the skies are clear. But if you get to the airport and you see fog on the runway, you are grounded! No take off, no landing.

For some people, negativity is their “fog.” Because they cannot see through it, they stay on the ground going nowhere. A high-energy person, on the other hand, isn’t clouded by the fog of negativity. They see and achieve a straighter, clearer path to their goals because they don’t see the obstacles…just the potential.

Opportunity.

Energy is attractive, magnetic. Think about it. If you walk into a room of static displays but in the corner you see one with moving pieces, won’t you consider walking over to it first? People with this perceived energy actually attract opportunities to them, whether it’s the next prospective business deal, friend, or possible mate. Opportunities seem to magically, inexplicably come their way, simply because of the receptivity and positive energy they exude to the world.

Are you a high-energy person? Yes you are. Our energy lies deep within us; we all have it. The key is to release it into the world and let it work for us. Take time to think through your gratitude and positivity. It is undoubtedly, it is proportional to the amount of positive energy you are releasing to the world!

 

Jacqueline Camacho-Ruiz is the CEO of JJR Marketing (www.jjrmarketing.com) and Fig Factor Media LLC (www.todayslatina.com), founder of The Fig Factor Foundation (www.thefigfactor.org), author of eight books (www.jackiecamacho.com), international speaker, and pilot. Jacqueline speaks to hundreds of audiences about marketing, servant leadership, finding your passion, and achieving success in business. She has addressed the United States Army, BP International, United Airlines, Allstate, and Farmers Insurance among other corporations to share her inspiration.

If you or an organization you know needs as speaker, please get in touch with us at http://www.jackiecamacho.com/contact.

Time Management Tips for a More Productive 2018

Whether we are 10 years old or 100, I think that as humans one of our greatest challenges is our time management , so finding your way to some new time management tips is a great way to start off the new year!

Over the holidays, I had a wonderful discussion with my niece who is in high school, about it. Even though we move in different worlds, we both have to juggle appointments, assignments and meetings while simultaneously pursuing new opportunities. For her, this may mean submitting a new activity or application for an exciting opportunity by a deadline; for or me it may mean devoting time to identify new business opportunities and meeting with potential clients.

After commiserating about our busy schedules, we put our heads together and started to exchange our favorite time management tips. While we had many in common, we learned from each other too! Here are some of our greatest hits that we hope will help you become more productive in 2018.

  1. Use a timer. Challenge yourself to complete projects, or a phase of a project within a certain period of time.
  2. Plan ahead. Planning can save you 10 minutes for every one minute of planning you do.
  3. Get in the zone. Hunker down with whatever you need to concentrate and get a job done. For some, that means a cup of coffee, favorite pen, or headphones with music.
  4. Turn your cell phone down. You can’t be distracted by what you don’t hear!
  5. Do the big projects when you’re at your best. That may mean 6 am if you’re a morning person, or 11 pm if you’re a night owl!
  6. Do the big projects in phases. You’ll produce better, more thorough work than trying to get it all done in one sitting.
  7. Approach problems creatively. Try thinking visually and use blank sheets to let your imagination flow. Use colors and draw your solutions, without constraints.
  8. Celebrate every accomplishment. You deserve it!
  9. Recalculate every strategy that doesn’t work. Make adjustments and move on.
  10. Share with others. They will appreciate you and make important contributions that can improve your work.
  11. Apply new lessons or techniques you can learn yourself or from others. Sharpen the saw!
  12. Color code calendar items. Color can make it easier to identify and prioritize work and important items.

When it comes to time management, I believe most tips fall into one of five major areas: controlling your time, controlling your environment, working strategically, letting creativity flow and motivating yourself. If you think of your time management within these categories, you’ll get your work done as quickly and productively as possible.

Here’s a little infographic that can help you remember the best ways to manage your time in 2018. Could your team use some new ideas on time management for the coming year? Contact me for a custom presentation!

 

Jacqueline Camacho-Ruiz is the CEO of JJR Marketing (www.jjrmarketing.com) and Fig Factor Media LLC (www.todayslatina.com), founder of The Fig Factor Foundation (www.thefigfactor.org), author of eight books (www.jackiecamacho.com), international speaker, and pilot. Jacqueline speaks to hundreds of audiences about marketing, servant leadership, finding your passion, and achieving success in business. She has addressed the United States Army, BP International, United Airlines, Allstate, and Farmers Insurance among other corporations to share her inspiration.

If you or an organization you know needs as speaker, please get in touch with us at http://www.jackiecamacho.com/contact.

Living Full Circle

Imagine a tiny little girl in Mexico, about five years old, (but already a voracious reader), looking over her mother’s bookshelf of personal development books. When her mother is busy, this is her babysitter—the bookshelf where she can always find something to read. She spies an inviting, goldenrod spine and her little fingers grasp it and slide it out and away from its neighbors on the shelf. A kindly older man smiles at her from the cover as she reads the title, Como Disfrutar de la Vida y del Trabajo or in English, How to Enjoy Life and Work. The man is Dale Carnegie and the book is actually a collection of excerpts from his most famous books, How to Win Friends and Influence People and How to Stop Worrying and Start Living. Wide-eyed and intrigued, she opens the cover and begins reading, with no knowledge that this book will ultimately change her life.

Fast forward twenty years to the waiting room of Dale Carnegie’s headquarters in Chicago, one of the largest and most successful Dale Carnegie franchises in the country. The little girl, now grown and the founder of a burgeoning marketing agency, clutches the tattered, dog-eared copy of her mother’s book—the same book that has inspired her life philosophy since she was five years old.

How did she get here? After sharing wonderful stories about the importance of the Dale Carnegie philosophies in her work and personal life, a generous client had insisted that she meet Mr. Greg Cox, Director of the Dale Carnegie franchise. That was two years ago. Mr. Cox had been reluctant to meet with a “marketer” who was probably just trying to sell him something. However, thanks to her persistence and positive energy, she was granted half an hour with him this day.

The beginning of a great friendship…

So began my very personal relationship between me, Jackie Camacho-Ruiz, and the Dale Carnegie organization. That day I made a good friend and strategic partner as I told Greg about my love for the Dale Carnegie principles and showed him the important book that my mother had purchased for 26 pesos in Mexico so long ago. I told him how even then, I wondered how I could apply these principles to my life as an adult, then set out to do exactly that and how the magic of the principles helped me in my daily life, with incredible success. We ended up conversing for nearly two hours, sharing our stories. He was amazed by my words and we ended up taking a picture of me with the book to share with others in the organization.

As I thanked him for his time and the opportunity to share my story, I turned to leave and he stopped me. “Jackie,” he said, “I don’t know exactly what you do for your clients, but I want it. Put together a proposal with some recommendations for me.”

The rest, I guess you can say, is history. Our proposal for a six-month contract for media relations and other marketing efforts was approved immediately and from there, our relationship has continued to this day. I have been blessed to have experienced most of the Dale Carnegie courses available, including the flagship Dale Carnegie Course, High Impact Presentations and Leadership Training for Managers. Best of all, I have been able to provide my team with courses and Dale Carnegie training as well.

The Full Circle Moment

There are precious few times in life when you experience a “full circle moment.” That is the moment at which you realize that a journey is complete. It’s the time you recognize how far you have come from a dream or inspiration, to the place you are right now. You may or may not have planned the events that led you to that moment, but nevertheless, there you are! And it’s amazing!

One of life’s special “full circle” moments came for me during a Dale Carnegie leadership course. At the end of the eight weeks of the session, the participants, which included about 35 CEOs, including many entrepreneurs, voted on the leader who has inspired them the most. The award is regarded as one of the highest honors given by the organization for excellence in human relations.

I remember hearing my name but I was in shock as I made my way to the front of the room to accept the petite crystal cube with the “Dale Carnegie’s Golden Book” nestled inside. Anyone who knows me will tell you I am never at a loss for words but at that moment, I was truly humbled and speechless. I couldn’t believe that I had come full circle from a little girl taking a book off the shelf to standing before a Dale Carnegie leadership cohort and accepting an award. It was truly surreal!

I have been honored and blessed to receive even more awards from other groups honoring my entrepreneurship and business excellence, but the award I covet most is the tiniest on my shelf. It’s that little cube I received during my “full circle moment,” that I will forever treasure in my heart.

I wanted to share this with you because I think we all experience these full circle moments and when they happen, it’s important to recognize the beauty and magic of them and reflect on their significance in your life. They usually start with a dream, or a spark of inspiration, an engine that sets you moving forth with passion. Eventually, you will have the opportunity to act, like I did in persisting in meeting Greg. From every action, achievement is possible, which is what happened when I secured my first contract working with them. Finally, if we are truly blessed, we will be validated for our efforts, as I was with my physically tiny, yet emotionally gigantic award.

Have you experienced a full circle moment? I wish you many in your lifetime because they are some of the most breathtaking and rewarding experiences you can possibly have. Truly, living full circle is living life to the fullest! May you do it with passion!

Jacqueline Camacho-Ruiz is the CEO of JJR Marketing (www.jjrmarketing.com) and Fig Factor Media LLC (www.todayslatina.com), founder of The Fig Factor Foundation (www.thefigfactor.org), author of eight books (www.jackiecamacho.com), international speaker, and pilot. Jacqueline speaks to hundreds of audiences about marketing, servant leadership, finding your passion, and achieving success in business. She has addressed the United States Army, BP International, United Airlines, Allstate, and Farmers Insurance among other corporations to share her inspiration.

If you or an organization you know needs as speaker, please get in touch with us at http://www.jackiecamacho.com/contact.

Words in Business: The Best Tools for Building Relationships

Words in business are extremely important, and just as important as the words we use in life and our personal relationships. Certain words elevate while others divide. We often see this in arenas we cannot control such as politics and dysfunctional relationships, but in business, we can take care to always use words to amplify our goodwill towards others. After all, there is a direct correlation between your attitude, the things that manifest in your life, and the words you use.

Ask yourself: what are the three words that you find yourself using most in your business?

For me, those three words are amazing, beautiful, and make-it-happen.

I use these words in business and embrace them every day with a correlating attitude as I meet people, make calls and write emails. I try to infuse thoughtfulness in my daily communication in not only my actions but the words I choose as well. When you listen to your client, the words you use can affirm their thoughts and feelings. How you use your words in business can be powerful and make your clients feel validated, brilliant, and creative! They can lead to wonderful things…

Understanding instead of friction.

If a client cancels on you several times, you can use words that elevate instead of diminish the relationship as you respond to them. Often it’s not just the words, but the tone that you put with your communication that can soothe or chafe the reader. For example, which of these followup emails would show understanding?

“Once again, I’m disappointed we did not meet t today. I hope we will be able to move forward on the project in a timely manner.”

“I’m sorry we were unable to connect. I’m so looking forward to speaking with you again when your schedule allows. Till then, don’t work too hard!”

A sweet end note.

How do you end your emails and texts? What is your phrase? If you want to make it an amazing day and leave a positive impression, pay attention to how you close out your written conversations. Consider the difference:

“Looking forward to making it happen!” –Jackie

Thanks. –Jackie

Demonstrated Sensitivity.

If you need to discuss sensitive information, never do so over text or email. If there are emotional stakes in the conversation, it should take place personally, preferably face to face. If the outcome of the conversation would bring a change or potential change in status of a relationship (ex. a discontinuation of a relationship, be it business or personal; a confession or explanation of a mistake; a cancellation of major plans, etc.) it is best to talk to the party personally. Which is more sensitive:

(By phone): Hi Hal, how are you? (Hal answers) Good. Well, I wish I was calling with better news. We were recently reviewing our performance over the last quarter and our profit margins since we signed with your company are not quite what we had hoped.

(By email): Dear Hal, due to budget cuts we will no longer be using your service.

Obviously, using the right words in business, through the right medium, can help you express genuine, pure interest in another person and possibly retain a relationship even in the midst of conflict.

However, it is true that regardless of your words and how sensitively you deliver them, there will still be some relationships that may be difficult to salvage. Some people are simply not bridgeable. They may be difficult to build a relationship with in the first place, or have an all or nothing approach and be expert bridge burners.

The challenge in these cases is to set aside your ego, let your guard down, and focus on bringing your best words to every conversation. Do that with your words in business and you will triumph– and so will those around you!

 

Jacqueline Camacho-Ruiz is the CEO of JJR Marketing (www.jjrmarketing.com) and Fig Factor Media LLC (www.todayslatina.com), founder of The Fig Factor Foundation (www.thefigfactor.org), author of eight books (www.jackiecamacho.com), international speaker, and pilot. Jacqueline speaks to hundreds of audiences about marketing, servant leadership, finding your passion, and achieving success in business. She has addressed the United States Army, BP International, United Airlines, Allstate, and Farmers Insurance among other corporations to share her inspiration.

If you or an organization you know needs as speaker, please get in touch with us at http://www.jackiecamacho.com/contact.

How to Engage an Audience and Move Them to Action!

Whether you look into the audience’s eyes from behind a podium or send your content into the world through print or the internet, we all want to know how to engage our audience and activate them in some way. Our hope is that the passion we embed in our spoken or written words will penetrate and move them on some level.

As a speaker, I’m always thinking about how to engage my audience and it’s my personal goal for every presentation. As an author, my goal is the same. But what’s really behind making this happen? As communicators, do we know how to engage an audience to make our message as powerfully activating as possible? I believe there are three basic needs that we can tap into to have our audience and/or readers up on their feet in no time.

Make them feel important. From the time we are born we cry for attention and want to know that we matter in the world. It’s a basic human need for us to feel important, and it’s a need we can tap into as communicators. By acknowledging our audience for who they are, praising their achievements and addressing their greatest challenges, we show our audience that they are indeed, important to us. We can display empathy for their pain points and rejoice with them over their victories. By sharing our knowledge in word or print, we show our appreciation for them. By offering a material token of this same information, such as a handy guide, infographic or small token gift, we make them feel even more important!

Give them an experience. Telling someone about something is never as effective as letting them experience it themselves. When we experience things, we learn two ways—mentally as well as kinetically, with our bodies, muscles and senses. In a presentation, you can achieve this by getting the audience up on their feet or using audience participation to help drive home your main points. Retreats utilize awareness exercises to engulf participants in their consciousness to reveal, discover and learn new things. In a book or piece of content, you can give readers an experience by framing a narrative in an original way or using images to connect them visually to the information they need to have. A speech or book may leave our memory, but an experience deliciously lingers in our soul!

Let Them Be Part of Something Bigger. Right up there with the human need to feel important is the human need to feel useful. Everyone likes to know they are making a difference. For many, this means being part of a bigger picture, or cause. At JJR Marketing, we call the branch of marketing that embraces this area, “cause marketing,” and it is a powerful way for companies to reach out to the community. By partnering with a non-profit organization and providing services, admissions, support or even volunteers for a cause, everyone wins. When speaking, appeal to the bigger picture or cause. When writing, entertain scenarios of what could be if everyone worked together. We all have the need to do good. Show and tell your audience how it’s done!

While figuring out how to engage an audience may seem complicated, keeping these three basic motivators in mind as you put together your presentation or article. And if you are ever in need of a dynamic keynote speaker who is experienced in activating an audience, please don’t hesitate to call me!

 

Jacqueline Camacho-Ruiz is the CEO of JJR Marketing (www.jjrmarketing.com) and Fig Factor Media LLC (www.todayslatina.com), founder of The Fig Factor Foundation (www.thefigfactor.org), author of eight books (www.jackiecamacho.com), international speaker, and pilot. Jacqueline speaks to hundreds of audiences about marketing, servant leadership, finding your passion, and achieving success in business. She has addressed the United States Army, BP International, United Airlines, Allstate, and Farmers Insurance among other corporations to share her inspiration.

If you or an organization you know needs as speaker, please get in touch with us at http://www.jackiecamacho.com/contact.