Hail the Weekend! How To Work Less And Play More

I labelled this post a little dishonestly, simply because my week is blurred in distinction between “work week” and “weekend”. Firstly, find your creative time Through tried and tested measures (which remain elusive even to me), I have discovered my most creative time of the week is Monday morning. I do not dedicate this time to “work” but to doing creative things I love that indirectly generate income. Learning, exploring, planning, and researching. It’s such a pleasure to wake up on Monday morning, knowing that I do Continue reading →

How To Brave The StartUp Rollercoaster

Liz Barron has written a guest post for the blog on learning to ride the StartUp Rollercoaster. I think all entrepreneurs feel like they are on a rollercoaster at times. It’s a great analogy that one of her clients knew only too well. Enjoy the read… One of the big personal risks for any entrepreneur (apart from blowing their finances, eating too much takeout food and never seeing their family) is whether they have the ability to survive the massive demands on their emotional and Continue reading →

Content Marketing Your Event in 5 Snackable Bites

Elish Bul Godley has written a guest post for the blog on marketing your next event (online or offline). Content Marketing should not be by-passed but actively harnessed for your next event. Read on to learn how… Content marketing for events: ‘There are no straight lines’. There are moveable feasts, switching goal posts and multiple variables; but no simple formula that will take you from A to B and no linear equations. Surrender to that idea and content marketing your next event will paradoxically become less Continue reading →

Upskill Your Workforce The Smart Way

Investing in Training and Coaching is one of the most effective steps you can take to boost competitive advantage for your business. It’s a given. Any Human Resources or Training Manager I have spoken with over the years, realises and appreciates the need to upskill their staff and maintain a skilled workforce. Upskill your key people and keep them at the top of their game Professional development is generally high on their list of priorities when a company is progressing. Especially when IT processes and legal know-how Continue reading →

Happiness In Three Steps

Happiness Step No 1 Feel Happy Happiness Step No 2 Be Happy Happiness Step No 3 Go back to Happiness Step No 1 How did it go? You feeling happy? Not quite there yet? Do we need to start again? Go on, I dare you – try it once more. If you are feeling blue or angry or scared, it’s hard to suddenly ‘change state’ and feel or be happy, isn’t it? Well, no actually, it’s very easy. You just need to know how. Some people know this already, Continue reading →

Why you should NOT make New Year’s Resolutions

Bonne année! Welcome to 2015 Did you make New Year’s Resolutions this year? So how are they going? Are you on track? Or are they a bit broken? Stale and soggy on the crumpled up bit of paper you wrote them on, or shifted out of your short-term memory where you were sure you stored them safely? The MOST commonly broken New Year’s resolutions: Lose Weight / Get Fit Quit Smoking Learn Something New Eat Healthier and Diet Get Out of Debt Save Money Spend More Continue reading →

Use The GROW Model To Present With Confidence

Do you struggle with the thought of presenting? Speaking in public? Standing up in a meeting to demo something or show some charts? Well read on and learn how you can make it easier for yourself, and present with confidence. GROW and present with confidence! A simple guideline to help you when you are presenting: G – Grab their interest The first 20 seconds are vital! If you have already been introduced, or are listed on a programme of events, it’s really not necessary to spend Continue reading →

Your Silent Partners

There is a certain quietness out there, beyond the madness of the noise in our heads as we endeavour to jump-start our new business. That quietness is also full of noise and busy-ness. What only the experienced business owner will realise is that even though starting a business is daunting, there are people out there who are watching, minding, and wishing us well. They are throwing us tit-bits of information and help, enough for us to catch on to, but not obvious hand-outs. “To background Continue reading →

I Am Not A Good Presenter, Get Me Out Of Here!!

So you think you are not a good presenter. One of the top human fears is the fear of public speaking. Another is the fear of death. But imagine that for some, the  No. 1 fear can be actually dying whilst speaking in public. If the thought of standing up in front of a crowd is worse than death itself, read on for some tips on how to overcome that. Origin Most phobias and dreaded fears stem from a single event. Most people can recall immediately Continue reading →

Blogging – I have no time to blog!

Do you blog? Are you blogging? No? It’s classic procrastination ~ why do today, what you can put off until tomorrow? Actually, I really enjoy blogging, but I really don’t have time to blog, my life is so busy. But I think about it all the time, I think to myself “I really should sit down and spend an hour researching and writing a blog”. Then I think, “I’ll see if I can find time tomorrow, or maybe over the weekend”. What kind of a Continue reading →

Ergonomic Health at Work

Ergonomic health – what’s it all about? We are all business people, working hard! Some of us may find ourselves sitting in front of the computer for many hours during the day (like you are now, perhaps). So I thought I would share a few simple ergonomic exercises with you to help stretch your limbs, eyes, ears and other areas of your body. Sit up and get ready for some action with these great ergonomic tips! Your Posture Ensure your chair and desk are the correct height Continue reading →

Selling – Are you selling to your market or yourself?

Are you talking about your products or services? To whom? Are you selling to your market, the people who matter? Or to yourself, quietly, un-noticed? Well let’s talk sales. Selling to your market For those of you who have been reading my posts previously, will know that I don’t normally discuss sales. But in actual fact the reality is that unless you do not exist, you are selling something. So let’s assume you work in or run a business. Then you are definitely selling. Perhaps Continue reading →

#SMEcommunity – Ireland’s Business Success Story

#SMEcommunity – an inspiring idea that “viraled” beyond belief in a tiny country that possesses a HUGE business community. Last year, I attended the #Birr2012 tweetup, which really was a full-scale conference and with amazingly beneficial seminars. Here’s what happened: #SMEcommunity 2012 Day 1 – June 2011 – over on Twitter It began with a tweet or two, 2 entrepreneurs chatting and supporting each other one evening. Then more tweeps hopped into the conversation. The hashtag #SMEcommunity was created to continue the conversation the following day, and it Continue reading →

Personal Responsibility For Your Professional Conduct

Something has happened. You messed up. But hey, John messed up last week, and he managed to wangle his way out of it. So if you could just blame this one on time constraints, or perhaps Jane as she didn’t finish the draft correctly. Or maybe when James didn’t come back to you within the half hour you specified, that would have delayed you also, right? Wrong! If you mess up, are late submitting a project, or get something wrong – It’s your fault! – own up to it!

Merry Christmas from The Smart Train

Yes, it’s that time of year again!!! What a year it has been for The Smart Train. We have launched, blogged, tweeted, facebooked, and newslettered till we cannot type anymore, so I want to share with you some beautiful photos I took during the big snow in Ireland of 2010. These photos warmed my heart even though they are of cold snow Merry Christmas and Enjoy!       Happy New Year! Here’s to a fantastic year ahead. 2013 has so much to look forward to, despite the hardships Continue reading →

Networking Tips – Rapport Is An Important Skill

Do you go to networking events? Do you enjoy them? Do you find you seem to rub people up the wrong way while at professional networking events? Do you normally get on with people in your personal social circles? If the answer is “Yes” to both those questions, consider these possibilities: You choose your friends, you do not choose who will be present at a networking event You are comfortable in small groups, but are petrified when surrounded by strange people You are great at organising Continue reading →

iPad – A Useful Productivity Tool

Do you have an iPad? whether you do or not, do you struggle with Productivity anyway? Are you unsure what IT systems you should have in place? Would you like some insight into what may work as an alternative to the traditional systems? This may be the post for you! Can an iPad or other tablet be productive? Productivity, a measure of the efficiency of production, can also be referred to as a measure of output from a production process, per unit of input. It is the Continue reading →

Networking Tips – How To Network Successfully

A few years ago, I met Seán Gallagher at a network meeting. We got chatting as you do over cups of tea. Seán thinks networking is akin to going to an AA meeting “Hi my name is Seán, and I am an Entrepreneur!” And everyone in the group says “Hiiiiiii Seán”. Boy, I had to laugh at that, as sometimes that’s exactly how it feels. And just recently at a speed-networking event, the MC mentioned that there were 45 people in the room selling. He Continue reading →