Articles by C.J. McClanahan

Do You Really Need an Apple Watch?

Friday, March 20th, 2015

On March 9th, Apple announced the newest addition to its product line, the Apple Watch. As expected, the media lost their minds, fawning over every single feature and benefit. Analysts predict the company will sell between 30 and 40 million units in the first 12 months.

I bet they are right. I am certain that a line of Apple fanatics will wrap around local Apple stores, camping out for days to be the first to purchase this new product.

In fact, I’d bet you’re considering buying an Apple watch. It’s OK, don’t be embarrassed, admit it.
But, before you go and plop down a minimum of $349, as a public service, I feel obligated to offer a few observations:

You should be a little offended. In addition to telling the time, the Apple Watch does a whole bunch of other stuff (Instant messaging, listen to music, check the weather, etc.) that is also offered via your iPhone. Apple is convinced that you have become so lazy, that reaching into your pocket is now considered cumbersome. What’s next, a chip implanted in your brain that updates Facebook every time you see a hysterical bumper sticker?

It’s not a Rolex. Personally, I don’t have a ton of really expensive clothes/accessories. However, I completely understand it when an individual wants to look their best and buys a nice watch, jewelry or a tailored suit. If you are this type of person, the Apple Watch is not for you. No matter what style you get (even the $17k gold version), the watch is square, bulky and ugly. It is not a fashion accessory.

Your productivity will go down. This final point will certainly generate debate, but as with most arguments, you will eventually agree with me. The Apple Watch will not help you get more done in less time for two reasons. First, the watch is designed to stay paired with your iPhone and, I can’t believe I find the need to point this out, if you have your iPhone with you why wouldn’t you just use it? Second, research from a lot of really smart people has concluded that constant interruptions significantly reduces your productivity.

Here’s my advice. If you are so in love with everything Apple, then just go and get an Apple or Steve Jobs tattoo on your wrist. It shouldn’t cost more than $100, and you can take it swimming. Most importantly, I promise everyone will “get” your devotion to the brand the instant they see it.

C.J. McClanahan
Reachmore Strategies
317-576-8492
cjm@goreachmore.com

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Everything Can’t Be Important

Sunday, December 15th, 2013

I just checked and there are now officially 167 great new ideas/technologies that I should be utilizing “right now” in my business to help it grow and become more profitable.
If I wanted to add another dozen, I could just pick up the latest copy of Inc., Entrepreneur or Fast Company They are filled with “How to” lists that could keep you busy “improving” for years.

The access to great ideas is unlimited and is only going to improve.

That’s the good news.

Unfinished Projects

Unfortunately, there’s another side to this coin. It’s called “great idea overload” and it leads to an office/home full of half-finished projects.

A clear symptom of this disease is a whole bunch of $9.95 hits to your credit card for services (aka – great ideas) that you can no longer remember purchasing.

You probably tell yourself that you are just one “app” away from breaking through to the next level.

You may be that close, but it has nothing to do with one great idea.

Marathon

You are in the middle of a marathon, not a sprint. Your success isn’t built upon half finished “get rich quick” ideas – it’s built upon a powerful vision that guides your everyday tactics.

The clearer the vision, the easier it is to prioritize and say “no” to all of the really great opportunities that will hit your email, Twitter® feed or Facebook® wall throughout the day.

Everything can’t be important.

What do you need to say no to today?

C.J. McClanahan
Reachmore Strategies
317-576-8492
cjm@goreachmore.com

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You Have Plenty of Time

Thursday, August 29th, 2013

I live by a handful of fundamental beliefs – you probably think of them as clichés.

One of those is that there is no such thing as a free lunch. In other words, if you want to be successful, you need to put in the work. This flies in the face of virtually every marketing message you hear today that promises instant riches, perfect relationships and rock hard abs with little effort. However, just this once, I am going to go against one of my fundamental beliefs.

You are seconds away from hearing a simple piece of advice that is guaranteed to improve your productivity by at least 25% within 30 days – guaranteed.

Ready? Here goes.

Eliminate the following excuse from your vocabulary – “I didn’t have enough time.” This one simple adjustment will change everything and here’s why.

You always have enough time.

Saying, “I don’t have enough time” is never true – never. If you don’t do something it’s because you chose to do something else. There are no exceptions to this rule – none. This simple recognition will improve your productivity because you will no longer commit to activities that you know you won’t complete. You will begin to understand one of my favorite quotes from Patrick Lencioni – “If everything is important then nothing is important.”

This shift in your perspective will help you recognize the difference between a “should” do and a “must” do. Productivity is a direct result of spending your time on the most important activities.

That’s it. Quit making excuses and get clear about what’s important.

C.J. McClanahan
Reachmore Strategies
317-576-8492
cjm@goreachmore.com

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Great Leaders are Consistent and Predictable

Friday, June 7th, 2013

Easily my favorite passage in recent memory came from Patrick Lencioni’s – The Advantage.

“Many leaders fail to over communicate because they get bored saying the same thing over and over again. This is understandable. Intelligent people want to be challenged with new messages and new problems to solve, and they get tired of revisiting the same topics. But that doesn’t matter. The point of leadership is not to keep the leader entertained, but to mobilize people around what is important.”

Type A leaders who innovate, create and get crap done all have the same flaw – they get bored easily. You can see it on their faces. The minute someone begins to talk about an issue that they feel has been addressed they check out. It’s rude, selfish and disrespectful.

Unfortunately, most leaders think that it’s everyone else’s fault for moving too slow and insisting on reviewing mundane day-to-day tactics. Ten years ago, I thought just like most leaders. I was convinced that I was a lot smarter than everyone else and got frustrated with topics that didn’t interest me. Ten years and hundreds of clients later, I now realize that I was very wrong.

The most successful executives I have coached are not the smartest or those that come up with the most ideas. The professionals who build the most profitable companies share one simple trait – they are committed to practicing the fundamentals.

In other words, they are boring.

These leaders have regular weekly meetings where they follow the exact same agenda. They hold annual performance reviews with every employee. They analyze the sales pipeline religiously and never fail to ask the question – “What do you need to do to close more sales?” When I reinforce this concept to my clients, they often ask, “When does this routine activity cease to be so tedious?”

It doesn’t. If you are like most professionals and crave a new challenge every 45 minutes, this type of routine behavior will always bore you.

So, how do you stay interested?

Remain focused on your goals and carefully measure your progress. As soon as you gain some momentum and realize success you’ll find it a whole lot easier to repeat the behavior that got you there.

It’s simple, but requires the discipline to delay gratification.

C.J. McClanahan
Reachmore Strategies
317-576-8492
cjm@goreachmore.com

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