Wednesday, September 26, 2007
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
I have posted the complete article below. For more tips on creativity, communication, teamwork, passion at work, and leadership, please take a look at my book at http://www.maketherightchoicethebook.com/.
You can purchase the book at your favorite book seller. For convenience, here is the link to Amazon.
And now the article:
We all have brainstormed the same way for years. Everyone spends an hour in the conference room, bored and uninspired. Somebody throws out a recycled idea. Everyone rallies behind the idea because they really just want to leave the conference room. Brainstorming should be fun, energetic and productive. Here are a few tips that hopefully will inspire the next great idea.
1. Choose a leader during the creative process. Someone has to keep everyone on track, or you will spend the entire session talking about television shows about attractive detectives solving crimes; attractive doctors saving lives; or attractive detectives and doctors solving crimes, saving lives and romancing each other.
2. Notate everything. Yes, it is a pain to write every idea down. If you don’t, you will forget. We always forget. Take notes, audiotape or videotape the session.
3. Change your location. You don’t always have to meet in the conference room for a brainstorming session. Creativity wants variety. Take a walk to another floor, go outside and sit on a bench or stand around the parking lot. Go to a nearby museum, store, mall, coffee shop or park to brainstorm. Use your surroundings to inspire and motivate you to create.
4. Create fast brainstorming sessions. Do not linger. Nobody looks forward to spending an hour in the conference room to brainstorm. Instead, use quick energy bursts. Everyone run into the room for 15 minutes and create as many ideas as possible. And then everyone must run out. Do this a couple times a day as a surprise. Use the energy to focus and produce ideas. Shorter idea sessions will create more ideas.
5. Relax, and create ideas each day. Take five minutes each day by yourself and think. Don't think about anything in particular. Just think. Take a walk around your building. Go sit on a bench. Leave your cell phone and Blackberry on your desk. Now, just think. Each time you do this you will have an idea. Sometimes it will be a little idea. Sometimes it will be a big idea.
6. Stop creating rules where rules do not exist. If someone says, “This is the way we have always done it,” run away in horror. You are not safe. He or she is a creative zombie and may infect you.
7. Eliminate some of your fears (the fear of failure, the fear of making a mistake, the fear of looking foolish) and your creative energy will increase. Nobody is keeping score. Every great idea in the history of the world was foolish or stupid. How many people walked by Orville and Wilbur Wright’s workshop to tell them they were fools?
8. Expand your possibility box. If the box is bigger, there will be more possibilities. When people want to create ideas, the first instinct is to shrink the possibility box. If you shrink the box, there will be nothing there. Try to expand the possibilities.
9. Find new ways of doing something. Remember, there is always more than one path and way. Don't be so quick to judge.
10. Stop trying to analyze and create at the same time. It is impossible. Someone will offer an idea and our first instinct is to attack like a pack of hyenas. We are analyzing, and we have stopped creating. Instead of attacking, build on the thought and create more ideas. When you have finished creating, then you can start analyzing. Build on each other's ideas. Be open to each other's ideas. Don't have an ego in the creative process. Creativity wants momentum and energy.
Joel Zeff creates energy. His spontaneous humor and vital messages have thrilled audiences for years. As a national workplace expert, speaker and humorist, Joel captivates audiences with a unique blend of hilarious improvisational comedy and essential ideas on work and life. Corporations and organizations nationwide seek him out to motivate and energize their employees on such topics as creativity, communication, teamwork, passion and fun. A former newspaper journalist and public relations executive, Joel started his own consulting business in 1994. His first book, “Make the Right Choice: Creating a Positive, Innovative and Productive Work Life” was just published by John Wiley & Sons.
Joel Zeff and Joel Zeff Creative retain the ownership and rights to this article. This article cannot be reprinted or published without the written consent of the author.
Saturday, September 22, 2007
It is quite interesting to see what messages/ideas/thoughts different members of the media pull out of the book.
Here are a few links:
The Miami Herald: http://worklifebalancingact.blogspot.com/
The Fresno Bee: http://www.fresnobee.com/jobs/workwise/story/137729.html
The Houston Business Journal (two stories and two links): http://www.bizjournals.com/houston/stories/2007/07/30/focus2.html
I also did an interview with FOX 26 in Houston. They were kind enough to post the interview on their web site. Please notice that at different times during the interview I have no control of my hands.
I have a couple big stories coming out (hopefully) in the Dallas Morning News and Houston Chronicle.
And, if anyone has a connection, friend, parent, spouse, child, relative, neighbor, vendor, partner, colleague, Jedi, they know in the media, please forward information about the book.
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
You can learn more about my book here: http://www.maketherightchoicethebook.com/.
You can learn more about my keynotes and workshops here: http://www.joelzeff.com/.
If you want to purchase the book, click here. The book is also available where other fine books are sold.
And, if you live in Dallas/Fort Worth, I have two book signings coming up in Plano. Please scroll down the blog for more information.
Take care and continued success.
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
Located in the Dallas/Fort Worth area? I have two upcoming book events. And one has a free appetizer buffet. Here is the information. I hope to see you there.
Purchasing and reading Make the Right Choice is a stand against every boring, mediocre, cliché-riddled, pompous, egotistical, bunch of bull crap business book that is spewed out each year. Stand with me at Barnes and Noble in Plano, Texas for the ideals of truth, realistic ideas and tips, fun, passion and humor. Who stands with me? Who stands up and proclaims that he/she is Spartacus?
2201 Preston Road, Suite E
Plano, TX 75093
Sept. 24th Author Event at the Plano Centre
Looking for an excuse to get off work a little early on Sept. 24th? How about the coolest networking event in Plano (that happens to occur on Sept. 24th)? I have invited four other local authors for a book signing/meet and greet/a really great reason to have an appetizer buffet.
4 p.m. until 7:30 p.m.
2000 East Spring Creek Parkway
Plano, TX 75086
Colleen A. Rickenbacher, CMP, CSEP, CPC
Author of “The Age of Speed”
My PR/Marketing efforts are a little slow going right now. I was interviewed on the morning news program (Fox 7) in Austin two weeks ago. The interview went very well (I will have a link as soon as receive my copy). Plus, it was a great excuse to take the family to the Hyatt Lost Pines Resort in Bastrop, TX. I highly recommend the resort.
And, I have a couple big interviews on Monday in Houston (one with the Fox morning program and the other with the Houston Chronicle). The best part is I get to go see the KC Chiefs/Houston Texans game on Sunday. And, that is what you call perfect timing.
Hopefully, the PR/Marketing efforts will pick up soon. I did just send out my second e-mail newsletter. And, somebody must be purchasing the book today. Here is the Amazon ranking:
Amazon.com Sales Rank: #20,707 in Books (See Bestsellers in Books)
Popular in these categories:
#63 in Books > Business & Investing > Business Life > General
#82 in Books > Business & Investing > Small Business & Entrepreneurship > General
#93 in Books > Business & Investing > Management & Leadership > Systems & Planning
Well, the ranking was better a few minutes ago, but I lost my link. I am sure the big business book boys would scoff at being the #63 general business life book, but I am pretty damn excited.
And, if anyone is reading this blog, please take a few minutes to rank the book and/or write a review on Amazon. Here is the link.
Tuesday, September 4, 2007
Monday, July 30, 2007
The PR machine is revving up for the release of the book. Unless you have spent the last week or so camping in the mountains, you should have heard about "Make the Right Choice: Creating a Positive, Innovative and Productive Work Life." As of this post, I have done one podcast interview for something called BNET and an interview for the Houston Business Journal about hiring speakers.
I don't think the podcast is ready yet. As soon as the interview hits the podcast world, I will provide a link. My goal is to speak to one person at a time. And with a podcast, that is pretty much what I am doing. This was my first podcast and I am still tingling.
I would like to provide a link to the Houston Business Journal. Unfortunately, I can't even access the story because you have to be a paid subscriber. I like my Internet content free. It kind of makes more sense, and I am sure the Houston Business Journal, like many other on-line publications will figure that out sooner than later.
And, that is the extent of my PR. Obviously, you can see the similarities between my PR machine and the PR machine for the new Harry Potter book. Unconfirmed sources tell me that the publisher moved up the release date for the new Potter book because they didn't want to be overshadowed by Make the Right Choice.
Here are just a few similarities between Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and Make the Right Choice:
Number of Sold Copies:
HP: 10 million copies sold in the first weekend.
MTRC: Slightly less.
Number of cover stories about the book in major publications:
HP: Every magazine. Every news show. Every newspaper.
MTRC: Did I mention the podcast on BNET?
Reports of people camping out and standing in long lines to receive their copy:
HP: Yes, in every city people were standing in line and camping out.
MTRC: There is an unconfirmed report that my mom had to wait until my dad was off the computer before she could order the book.
Friday, July 6, 2007
I am not sure where this blog will lead to during the coming months. The main focus of the blog will be my new book, Make the Right Choice: Creating a Positive, Innovative and Productive Work Life.
I always wanted to write a book. My clients would ask me, "Do you have a book?" Audience members would ask me, "Do you have a book?" Other speakers would ask me, "Do you have a book?" People on airplanes would ask me what I did for a living. I told them I was a speaker. "Do you have a book?" they would ask.
Now, after starting my own business in 1994 (I didn't really start seriously speaking for a living until 1997) I have a book.
What is the book about? Good question. Here is what I wrote on the book's jacket:
In Make the Right Choice, Joel shares
his experience and insight on creativity,
communication, teamwork, passion, and
fun. With wit, a sharp observational eye, and
playful irreverence, he discusses the choices
we all encounter in our careers. We each have
the ability to take initiative and make the right
choice to live a more creative, passionate,
effective, and productive life.
I think that is a pretty good description. As soon as I figure out how to post the entire book jacket, I will. Remember, I don't even have an iPod.
This blog will discuss upcoming book related events; thoughts on work and life; and musings from my travels and speaking events.
Thank you for taking the time to visit the blog. Take care and continued success.