A few months ago, I had the pleasure of being interviewed by the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals (NAPO) for it’s podcast series. My topic was Let Go to Grow: Focusing on Your Strengths. Below is a description of the podcast interview, as well as a play button for you to listen in. Hope it helps you in your business!

NAPO Podcast: Let Go to Grow – Focusing on Your Strengths

If the legal aspect of starting or growing your business has you intimidated, lost or overwhelmed, we have got the expert for you. From legal documents to the ins and outs of everyday business, today’s expert has us covered. With a background as an attorney, mediator and trainer of entrepreneurs, Lisa Montanaro is a sought after business expert. She is the owner of Lisa Montanaro Global Enterprises, the umbrella organization under which she offers productivity consulting, success coaching, business strategizing and speaking to individuals and organizations. Lisa is an inaugural certified professional organizer and a member of the Golden Circle of the National Association of Productivity and Organizing Professionals.

What you’ll learn about in this episode:

  • Transitioning from another career into professional organizing
  • Pros and cons of subcontracting under established organizers when you are just starting out
  • Great PR starts with believing in what you do, then letting media and other influencers know about it
  • How to grow a speaking and productivity coaching business
  • Tips on getting your name out there when you move to a new area
  • How raising your profile begets more opportunities to raise your profile
  • Understanding different kinds of legal business entities and which one is right for you
  • How to protect both yourself and your client in a business relationship “Let go to grow”
  • Why delegating and outsourcing tasks is a path to exponential growth in your business.

NAPO Podcast

unhappy_at-workAre you unhappy with your current job? Do you feel that the grass may be greener at another organization or in a different position? Well, that may be the case. But until you actually trek over to greener pastures, you need to find ways to be happy in the position you are currently in. If you are unhappy with your job, it will spread like wildfire and negatively affect all aspects of your life. Learn to love the job you’re in as much as you can by trying these simple, but effective tips. They will help you be more satisfied with your work by removing some of the unhappiness from your current job.

Take Pride in Your Work

Regardless of what you do for a living, chances are you can find something about it to take pride in. It could be the organization or company’s overall mission. It could be the productivity of your particular department or division. Perhaps it is the actual work that you produce. Maybe it is as simple as knowing that you are giving it your all. Take a look at your skills, talents and interests and the way they are used at work and find something you love about the job everyday, no matter how small. Taking pride in your work can lead to greater job satisfaction and overall happiness in the workplace.

Visit the Water Cooler and Be Socialwater_cooler

One of the ways to be happier at work is by developing connections with co-workers. Even if you don’t love your actual job, developing relationships with those you work with will help you enjoy the time you spend at work. I am not advocating that you spend hours on end at the water cooler, but visiting it once in awhile for a quick break and a chat with a co-worker can boost productivity and make you both enjoy your job more. So go ahead — get out there and be social!

Seek Out Assignments and Projects That Are Meaningful To You

Another way to be happier at work is to seek out assignments and projects that are meaningful to you. This could be in the core areas of your job, or in peripheral areas that your company or organization work in. If you want more responsibility, let that be known. If you want to incorporate certain talents and skills into your work, figure out ways to do so. Looking for more meaning in your work, but unable to find it directly? Think broadly. For example, maybe you are a corporate lawyer and feel that you want to use your legal talents in a way that “gives back.” You could seek out pro bono assignments and projects once in awhile that will serve to fulfill this need, thus making you enjoy your overall work and job more.

Participate in a Task Force or Committee to Make a Difference

Many companies and organizations have committees, but not all committees and task forces truly make a difference. You can change that. Find a committee or task force that is doing meaningful work and jump on board. Or better yet, create a task force or committee that studies and solves a problem. Employees that are involved in creating solutions are generally the ones that are happiest at work, as they are taking an active part in effectuating change. So don’t be a hermit – get out there and participate.

Change Your Attitude

great-attitudeA large part of job satisfaction and happiness in the workplace is affected by attitude. The good news about that is you can change your attitude! When your attitude changes, often times your behavior changes too. Yes, maybe your job is boring, or your boss is annoying, or the company is not creative in its approach, but your attitude towards your job is controlled by you. Dwell on the aspects of your job that are positive. Try your best to maintain some enthusiasm for your job. You are in control of your thoughts and attitude, so try to make it your mission to stay as positive as possible.

Coaching Challenge: Try to find ways to be happier at work by picking one of the above categories weekly and focusing on it. Let me know how you do, and how much it raises your happiness quotient!

I want to share something with you. Starting my own business was scary — REALLY scary (but also exciting)!! When I decided to leave my legal career behind and start my first business 13 years ago, all I had was an idea (or several all at once but was unsure where to start), and a load of self-determination to actually try being a business owner.

difficultThe hard truth is… your first 3-5 years in business are typically the most challenging and the time when many amazing people simply give up. Many new business owners experience some, or ALL, of the following entrepreneurial fears:

  • “I have an idea but don’t know where to start”, or
  • “How do I even set up a proper/legal business structure?” or
  • “I’ve started my business but I’m spinning my wheels, feel frustrated and I’m losing money… I need to get a ‘real’ job…” or
  • “You know what… this is just too much for me, I’m not cut out to be my own boss.”

Well, I’m happy to tell you: First, you’re not alone, and second, you can absolutely get through the first 3-5 years and thrive with the right business guidance, information, planning, support and mindset. With expert support and training, you can create the success you envision and so much more.

be_the_star_of_your_lifeTo that end, I’m thrilled to announce the first LMGU “Self-Study” course that you can take at your own pace! The Successfully Self-Employed Semester is now an on-demand training program for newer business owners or anyone that is serious about starting a new business. This course offers all the required skills, knowledge and guidance for the newer entrepreneur/business owner (or an experienced business owner that wants to go back to basics or plug some missing holes in your business!).

So many people contacted me to say that they really need this entrepreneurial training program, but can’t take it at the exact time I offer it live. Therefore, by popular demand, SSES has been converted to a self-paced, on-demand, home study course.

And the entire program is affordable — only $499 — enabling you to get the training you need for your business without breaking the bank! (If you’re a member of NAPO or an LMGU Alumni, contact me for a special discount).

The SSES Self Study Program consists of 10 modules of audio recordings and handouts that are yours as soon as you purchase. You learn on your own time from the comfort of your home or office.

Topics covered will include:

  • Businesss Ownership
  • Business Identity and Branding
  • Legal Structure and Issues
  • Marketing & Communications
  • Networking and Public Relations
  • Sales, Pricing and Money Issues
  • Blueprinting Your Business Operations

Campus doors are open! Stop spinning your wheels to figure everything out yourself. Get the help you need to set up or grow your business so that you can be Successfully Self Employed.

To Your Success!

I want to share something with you. Starting my own business was scary — REALLY scary (but also exciting)!! When I decided to leave my legal career behind and start my first business 12 years ago, all I had was an idea (or several all at once, but was unsure where to start), and a load of self-determination to actually try being a business owner.

The hard truth is… Many new business owners experience some, or ALL, of the following entrepreneurial fears:

  • “I have an idea but don’t know where to start”, or
  • “How do I even set up a proper/legal business structure?” or
  • “I’ve started my business but I’m spinning my wheels, feel frustrated and I’m losing money… I need to get a ‘real’ job…” or
  • “You know what… this is just too much for me, I’m not cut out to be my own boss.”

dream_businessWell, I’m happy to tell you: First, you’re not alone, and second, you can absolutely be successful as an entrepreneur with the right business guidance, information, planning, support and mindset. With expert support and training, you can create the success you envision and so much more.

What has always been heartbreaking for me is to watch how many fellow entrepreneurs give up too soon because they never find the solid information, training and support they need to succeed at an affordable level.

That’s why I’ve created the Successfully Self-Employed Semester. It is a teleclass-based training program starting on September 30th for newer business owners, anyone that is serious about starting a new business, or someone that’s been in business for years but needs to go back to basics.

Topics include: business identity and branding, legal structure and issues, marketing, networking and public relations, sales, pricing and money issues, and operations. It’s a powerful program offered at a fraction of the cost of doing private business coaching with me.

Here’s an overview of the program details:

checkbox Dates: Tuesday evenings, September 30th – December 9th
checkbox Time: 4:00-5:30 pm Pacific/ 5:00-6:30 pm Mountain/ 6:00-7:30 pm Central/ 7:00-8:30 pm Eastern
checkbox Length of Program: The program extends over ten weeks allowing you time to learn, engage the materials, implement, test out your knowledge, and make your learning last far beyond the end of the semester.
checkbox Includes: Master Classes, MP3 recordings of all calls, handouts/checklists/templates, a private Facebook group for all of us to communicate, plus two bonus audio programs as soon as you register to get you started and motivated!
checkbox Topics covered: Business ownership, business identity and branding, legal issues, marketing, networking and public relations, the sales process, pricing/packages and money issues, and business operations.
checkbox Flexibility & Accessibility: The program is offered entirely via phone and the internet, so no matter where you live this program is flexible and accessible to you! Plus, if you can’t make a live class, you can always listen to the MP3 recording, which will be posted the day after every class/call.
checkbox Affordability: Many newer business owners need help in the first few years, but can’t afford to get it. I’ve kept the program affordable so that you can get access to the help you need and crave. Offering this program in a group setting, and using technology to deliver it, is what allows me to keep the price at this level.
checkbox Investment: Early Bird Special = $697 if you register by September 23rd (with a 2-pay option of $360 in two equal installments if you need to space the investment out)

This program is strategically designed to help entrepreneurs with foundational business skills to build your confidence, structure, operations and effectiveness as a business owner. Come join me for the Successfully Self Employed Semester!

Hope to welcome you to “campus” when we start on September 30th!

As many of you recall, I launched an online learning platform last year called LMG University, which houses all of my online group programs. The one year anniversary of LMGU is this month! Wow… time flies, right?

It has been an amazing experience facilitating my online programs for the past year. So wonderful that we are doing them all again! Many of you contacted me to say that you wanted to take certain programs but the timing was off when we offered them last year. Well, here’s your chance!

Kicking off the academic year, we have two great online programs to choose from: one for newer/emerging entrepreneurs to help build a solid sustainable business, and the other one to help you live a healthy, passionate, productive “sweet life.” For full details and registration, visit each program page.

Successfully Self-Employed Semester

strategy_planningA 12-week teleclass-based training program to help newer entrepreneurs with foundational business skills to build your confidence, structure, operations and effectiveness as a business owner.

Topics covered will include: business identity and branding, legal structure and issues, marketing, networking and public relations, sales, pricing and money issues, and operations.

Starts September 9, 2014. Early bird rate of only $697 in effect until September 2nd and a handy 2-pay option is available as well.

Click here for details and to register.

natasharickert“Wow! Where do I begin when it comes to sharing about the bottom line impact that the Successfully Self Employed Semester offered by LMG University has had on my business, goals and perspective?! Some of the value I received in participating in this 12 week program was knowing that I’m going to save a ton of time and money implementing what I learned, versus stumbling around on my own trying to figure it out.

During SSES, we thoroughly discussed the crucial topics needed to be a successful business owner. Due to Lisa’s exceptional expertise, as well as the camaraderie and team spirit of the participants, I accomplished several goals and tasks promptly and efficiently while learning how to increase my sales, legally protect, and automate my business. Belonging to a group of entrepreneurs who come with their uni que backgrounds and experiences complimented by Lisa’s invaluable knowledge and business savvy, we were able to walk through personal and professional fears, and gain broader perspectives around what may be going on behind the scenes. We addressed some of the deeper issues holding us and our businesses back. What a gift to receive on-the-spot input, ideas and constructive feedback regarding my elevator speech, marketing materials, legal business status, and so much more.

If you’re looking for a program that will show you how to maximize results and profits over the long haul, I highly recommend Lisa Montanaro’s Successfully Self Employed Semester.”

~ Natasha Rickert, www.EnergytoOrganize.com

La Dolce Vita (“The Sweet Life”) Life Coaching Program

new_life-old_lifeA 6 week group life coaching program covering productivity, life-work balance, health and fitness, relationships, finances, and more. The La Dolce Vita lifestyle is about following your dreams, deciding not to play small anymore, living your life to the fullest, and allowing the real you to shine through! Whatever that larger vision for your life is… that’s what La Dolce Vita is all about.

Starts October 9, 2014. Early bird rate of only $299 in effect until October 2nd and a handy 2-pay option is available as well.

Click here for details and to register.

ms_butler“Lisa is the most inspirational, influential, and motivating coach to experience. I participated in her La Dolce Vita Program from LMG University. She is the only one that I trust as a mentor. Lisa uses a real hands on approach to work within so that you will empower yourself, and dig deep in order to pursue your true passions. I highly recommend Lisa! By taking her program, you will become aware that anything that you may have previously found to be out of your reach or you may have thought to be “impossible” will now and always become “possible.”

~M.S. Butler

See if either of these programs are a fit for you — and as always, contact me at Lisa@LisaMontanaro.com if you have any questions.

I have found that among its other benefits,
giving liberates the soul of the giver.”
~ Maya Angelou

Many of these products and services are part of official affiliate programs which pay a referral commission to me based on any purchases you make through these links. However, that is not the reason I recommend them. I only recommend products and services that I believe are of high quality, value, and will benefit you in a tangible way as you improve your home, office, and life.
The Help Kenya Project

This is a Westchester County, NY based charity that focuses on helping the children of Kenya. They collect donations of used computers, books, clothing, sports equipment, and other supplies and ship them to Kenyan schools and libraries. In return, they ask that the recipients plant trees to combat deforestation and provide children with a place to rest and play out of the sun.

It’s incredible how valuable the book or computer you might be throwing out is to a Kenyan child. By providing Kenya’s students with science, English, and computer skills, they give them a much better chance of finding good jobs later in life. It breaks the cycle of poverty by helping Kenyans to help themselves. This is a charity that truly leaves a lasting impact.



National Cristina Foundation

Linking Life to its Promise.

The National Cristina Foundation is a not-for-profit foundation dedicated to the support of training through donated technology. For more than two decades, it has encouraged companies and individuals to donate computers and other technology, which is then matched to charities, schools and public agencies in all 50 states, Canada, and in many countries around the world.


Vietnam Veterans of America
VVA accepts donations of household goods and clothing in 30 states in the continental United States. To make a donation, please refer to the state map. Identify your area and call the phone number referenced.


Tangible Karma is a donation tracking service that gives you a chance to see the difference your donated goods can make in the world.  At Tangible Karma their mission is to inspire and motivate you, to transform items that are hindering your life into valuable gifts that could make a meaningful difference in the life of another.


Overseas Coupon Program Did you know that expired coupons can be sent to troops stationed overseas and they can use them for 6 months after the expiration date?  If you find this idea redeeming, go to OCPNet.org and get the details. It’s 100% legal and each overseas base has a USA address so it is a local mailing. Save your coupons, even if they are expired to help out our troops!


DisposeMyMeds.org is an online resource to help you to find medication disposal programs at the local independent community pharmacy near you.

Your local community pharmacist has knowledge to ensure the safe and proper handling of your medications, from dispensing to disposal.


Recycle These Items That You Never Thought Of…

Vintage Doorknobs, Radiators, Windows and Mantels
Donate or sell classic architectural elements to salvage firms or restoration projects. SalvageWeb is an online ad space that links buyers and sellers all over the world; here you can buy an Art Deco church chandelier, or unload a clawfoot tub after renovating your bathroom. Baltimore-based Second Chance Inc. accepts salvage donations and trains low-income people in the art of “deconstructing” buildings.

Toothbrushes
The Radius Original Toothbrush has a handle made of cellulose, an organic fiber. (Radius also recycles the handles of its battery-operated model once the battery runs out.)

Foam Packaging
Lightweight “peanuts” made from expanded polystyrene (EPS) contain 25 to 100 percent recycled material.
The Plastic Loose Fill Council has a “Peanut Hotline” (800-828-2214) you can call to find local recycling centers, including chain-store shippers such as Pak Mail and The UPS Store. To recycle large, molded chunks of EPS used to cushion televisions, air conditioners and such, contact the Alliance of Foam Packaging Recyclers.

Sneakers/Tennis Shoes
Nike’s Reuse-a-Shoe program turns used athletic footwear (no cleats) into a material called Nike Grind, used to surface playgrounds, running tracks and outdoor courts. Or send your still-wearable athletic shoes to Shoe4Africa, which forwards them to athletes in developing countries.

Toys
Ask your local shelter for homeless families or battered women if they accept gently used toys. The Salvation Army and Vietnam Veterans of America also take used toys. Adult-appropriate items such as board games can be sent to troops overseas through www.AnySoldier.com

Wine Corks
Yemm & Hart, which produces recycled building materials, turns used corks into floor and wall tiles.

Motor Oil
Recycled motor oil can find new life as a lubricant or fuel. The American Petroleum Institute estimates the electricity created with just 2 gallons of reused motor oil would power the average home for nearly a day. Preserve used oil in a clean container with a secure, leakproof lid. You can recycle the used oil filter, too. Earth 911 has a list of motor oil recycling centers that’s searchable by ZIP code.

Prom, Bridesmaid and Formal Dresses
Charities like the Glass Slipper Project accepts donated gowns, shoes and purses to provide free prom wear to low-income teens. Another great resource is Donate My Dress, which is the first national network to bring together local dress drive organizations across the U.S. Books such as “Always a Bridesmaid: 89 Ways to Recycle That Bridesmaid Dress” offer tongue-in-cheek recycling advice to every woman who has a hideous gown buried at the back of her closet.

Eyeglasses, Frames and Cases
The Lions Club and Give the Gift of Sight Foundation collect used eyeglasses for needy people around the world. Donate your glasses at one of 17 Lions Clubs recycling centers, or at chains such as Pearle Vision Center, LensCrafters and Sunglass Hut.

Computers, Cell-Phones and Other E-Waste
The EPA maintains a list of charities that accept used electronic equipment. Staples, Office Depot and Best Buy offer in-store e-waste recycling — Best Buy also recycles used appliances. Dell, Toshiba and Sony lead the way in recycling computer products. Donate cell phones to organizations like The Wireless Foundation. Ship old videotapes and DVDs to Ecodisk or Greendisk.

Radio Shack Electronics Trade-In Program

Have electronics to trade-in? Use Radio Shack’s Trade-In Program!

You go online to http://www.radioshack.com/tradeandsave and indicate what items you wish to trade. Items must be in working condition. The site will determine the trade-in value of your items and create a pre-paid shipping label for you. You print off the shipping label, affix it to a box, pack your items and mail it to Radio Shack free of charge. When they receive it, they will mail you a Radio Shack gift card.

Electronics
Electronics improve the way we live, work and play. But, there’s one place where electronics should have no impact — the environment. Through responsible use, reuse and recycling of electronics, the consumer electronics industry and consumers can protect and preserve the environment — together. Many organizations offer free recycling of used electronics, so it’s easy to be green. Check out the following sites, which offer ways to sell or recycle your used electronics.

http://www.Gazelle.com
http://www.MyBoneyard.com

Life After Law is Out!

lifeafterlawI am honored to be profiled in this amazing new book by author Liz Brown, “Life After Law: Finding Work Your Love With the JD You Have.” It is an awesome career guide for lawyers and non-lawyers alike. Liz profiles lawyers that have jumped ship from a traditional law career to find greener pastures elsewhere. The real life stories are inspiring, and can be used as a motivator if you are thinking of making a career transition or reinventing yourself.

My transition from a practicing lawyer to an entrepreneur (coach, consultant, speaker and author) is profiled in the book, along with my honest advice on that journey. Grab your copy today!

school_busI don’t know about you, but when I see those yellow school buses rolling again, I get the itch to take a class, attend a workshop, go to a seminar, etc… I want to jump into learning something new, especially if it will help in growing my business or improving my life.

Well, if you’re like me and are looking for a learning opportunity that will help you reach your business goals, I’ve got the perfect answer — The Successfully Self Employed Semester, a 12-week group business coaching program!

And this is your friendly reminder that the Early Bird offer ends at midnight tonight, so be sure to click through and register before the price goes up.

The Successfully Self-Employed Semester is perfect for you if:

  • You need help clarifying what business model is best for you, and what your business identity or brand is.
  • You’re interested in shortening the learning curve on complex legal and financial issues, and price your business offerings in a way that makes your business profitable.
  • You want to create a marketing plan that you can launch and be excited about.
  • You want to know how to better market your business online and offline.
  • You’re serious about creating a successful business and are ready to do the work to make that a reality!

My goal is that you walk away from the semester with me having gained knowledge AND application/implementation. I think you’ll agree that’s a terrific and important investment of your time and business capital. I stand behind the value that you will receive in this course. I know without a doubt that this is a small financial investment that you will recoup in future business sales and success — and the time it will save you from learning this on your own or through trial and error.

Today is the last day to get the early bird rate of only $697 so if you are interested in joining is this semester, be sure to register by midnight Pacific time!

Watch this video where I explain my vision for the program!

business_buildingHave you seen my new 12-week group coaching program for business owners called the Successfully Self Employed Semester? It’s a powerful program offered at a fraction of the cost of doing private business coaching with me.

Join me, and a small group of like-minded, dedicated business owners (or budding business owners!), for a 12-week teleclass-based training program designed to focus on your business growth and success.

Here’s an overview of the program details:

Dates: Thursday evenings, September 5 to November 21 (we finish before Thanksgiving!)
Time: 7:00-8:30 pm Eastern Standard Time
Length of Program: The program extends over three-months allowing you time to learn, engage the materials, implement, test out your knowledge, and make your learning last far beyond the end of the semester.
Includes: Master Classes and Open Q&A Calls, MP3 recordings of all classes/calls, handouts/checklists/templates, a private Facebook group for all of us to communicate, plus two bonus audio programs as soon as you register to get you started and motivated!
Topics covered: Business ownership, business identity and branding, legal issues, marketing, networking and public relations, the sales process, pricing/packages and money issues, and business operations.
Flexibility & Accessibility: The program is offered entirely via phone and the internet, so no matter where you live this program is flexible and accessible to you! Plus, if you can’t make a live class, you can always listen to the MP3 recording, which will be posted the day after every class/call.
Affordability: Many newer business owners need help in the first few years, but can’t afford to get it. I’ve kept the program affordable so that you can get access to the help you need and crave. Offering this program in a group setting, and using technology to deliver it, is what allows me to keep the price at this level.
Investment: Early Bird Special = $697 if you register by August 19th (with a 2-pay option of $348.50 in two equal installments if you need to space the investment out)

This group program provides you the opportunity to:

  • Focus on your business’ growth and success
  • Hear about important lessons learned
  • Offer support to your fellow students
  • Be accountable as you implement the program curriculum
  • Participate in focused discussions on topics that are pertinent to your business
  • Take advantage of an opportunity to ask specific questions that will help you grow your business

Click here to watch a video I created with details about this exciting program!

If you are interested in having your very own business coach, but aren’t able to invest the money to work on a one-on-one basis with me, this affordable program is the answer. Remember, the early bird rate of $697 ends on August 19th. Don’t miss out on that $100 savings!

I’d love to spend three-months with you this semester. And I can’t wait to connect with you in the private Facebook group!


PS
– This course is not for the intermediate or advanced business owner. If you are looking for a more advanced program, check out the PowerUp Mastermind Program, which is a 6-month offering for experienced entrepreneurs starting in January 2014. To get on the Priority List for PowerUp, email Lisa@LisaMontanaro.com.

PPS – If you think friends, clients or colleagues may be interested in this program or any other LMG University program offered in the future, be sure to sign up for our affiliate program. You can earn a 20% commission just for referring others that register! https://www.lisamontanaro.com/affiliate/

testimonial-Migdalia


Are you a newer entrepreneur or want to start your own business? If so, check out my new 12-week business coaching/training program, The Successfully Self Employed Semester. I developed this program to help newer business owners get through the first 1-5 years and thrive with the right business guidance, information, planning, support and mindset.

The course starts on September 5, 2013, and is a teleclass-based group coaching & training program. Topics covered include business identity and branding, legal structure and issues, marketing, networking and public relations, sales, pricing and money issues, and operations.

Visit the program page for all of the details and to register: https://www.lisamontanaro.com/lmg-university/sses