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Get Yourself a Crew to Help You Succeed

I Realized I Had One …

Last Saturday, as I was barreling down the road, third in line of six cyclists, I realized I was part of a crew. A rat pack. A band of friends. A gang in the old-fashioned, positive sense of a bunch of people who hang out to do stuff.

It happened by accident. A couple of us wanted to ride, then a few more. At a certain point, it gained momentum.

There’s power in a group of friends who get together to accomplish a purpose. Positive peer pressure keeps you going when you’re not feeling motivated. Everyone’s learning curve accelerates. Your personal branding benefits when you spend time with people who are perceived as ambitious do’ers who have something good going on.

You Want Your Own Crew

Want to bring that kind of influence into your life? It could be for fitness – a running, riding or walking crew. It could be for business – a brainstorming, marketing or networking crew. It could be spiritual – a bible study group. It could be for anything you need to accomplish or just for the camaraderie of friendship.

How to Create One

So if you don’t have a crew of your own, it’s time to get one. Here’s how to deliberately and intentionally create your own CREW:

C – consistency.

Pick a day of the week or month, set a time and find a place. Make that your time. All else has to fit in relation to that. Not the other way around. For me, Saturday is riding day. Sunday is running day. Want to schedule something with me on one of those mornings? Better lace up the ol’ sneakers.

R – results.

No one else is going to want to join your unofficial club if it’s not doing any good. I started my running crew with one friend who wanted to get in better shape. After we both started showing results, other people wanted to be part of it too.

E – enthusiasm.

Whatever your purpose – fitness, business, worship – it’s still important to have fun. If you’re not enjoying it, why would anyone else want to chime in? No one has a crew and considers hanging out with them to be work or drudgery. No one in my cycling group ever complains (okay, sometimes when the headwind is really bad) and there’s sometimes a bit of moaning and groaning when we say “just one more lap” on Sunday, but everyone is doing this for the enjoyment.

W – word of mouth.

When you’ve got something good and you want to grow it, talk about it. Tell stories. Share your successes. If you spend time handing out with people in your crew, you can’t help but relive the fun you had the last time you got together. Other people will want to be part of that. Go ahead, invite them.

Grow your CREW and have fun!


Done with Your Resolutions?

It’s about this time of year that most people are done with their resolutions. They tried, they feel like they failed and now comes regret and a sense of failure. But this isn’t a one-time trial! “Resolution” is a combination of “re” and “solution.” And “resolve” is “re” and “solve.”

Most of the problems or questions we have, we know how to solve or answer. And we have to keep trying to solve them. Most habits take more than one try to establish. I think we subconsciously know this and we remind ourselves of it every new year with our ritual of resolutions. But then we make them, we keep them for a while and then many of them dissolve (“dis” and “solve”) into the rush of daily living. We feel like once again, we “failed.”

I’m working to remind myself that every time I rebuild a habit, I’m a bit stronger and get back on track a little faster. I’m more efficient at that habit and it takes less thought to continue with it. I’m also learning how to be more skilled at installing new habits, whatever they are.

If I added them up, I probably have a lot more habits and daily activities that I want to do than I did ten years ago. I picture it as if I have a big tank of water (my life) and the habits are corks I need to keep under water. Every once in a while, I add a new cork without taking one out. Some of them are going to fail for a time. Some of them are going to pop up – more than once.

Even my networking habits – as much as I’ve studied the topic and developed my skills – can use a retuning once in a while. It’s an unexpected benefit of writing a book on the topic. You get a sharp reminder when you see others using the strategies you suggested! My network reminds me of the habits and solutions that I want to keep building.

Do you feel like your resolutions have “failed?” That maybe they weren’t the solution? It’s time to “re-solve” to try again. To keep trying. Every time you see the word resolution or resolve, remind yourself that we know the solution but that it takes multiple tries and continual effort to make them stick. Find those people who help remind (“re” and “mind” – to put back into your mind) you of what you want to accomplish and how you can resolve to achieve it.

If networking is one of your resolutions, connect with me and a group of wonderful, resolved networkers on Facebook at


Business (and Networking) in the Morning

I wish I could remember exactly how I connected with Todd Schnick. I can see that we’ve been friends on Facebook since May 2009, but I can’t recall if he was a friend of a friend, a Facebook suggestion or perhaps we first connected on Twitter.

In the long run, it doesn’t matter. What does matter is that we’ve connected on several levels. I’ve learned a great deal from him as he has built and expanded his business (because he’s chronicled much of the process). I was part of a project he created last year (free ebook “Kicking Fear’s Ass“). We both love dogs and running. Plus, I think his wife Stephanie is smart and fun and beautiful (so does he). Despite me being in California and him living in Georgia, we’ve managed to meet in person once.

For those who are still skeptical about “meeting strangers” on social media, I hold this up as a piece of proof that you really can make friends and build great business connections on line. It might take more time. It might be more focused on business. It does take someone like Todd on the other end of the connection who also understands networking and is willing to work to build a relationship. But it can be as real a friendship or business partnership as you want it to be.

Todd recently invited me to be a guest on his “Business in the Morning” radio show. We talked about this topic of networking and social media. We shared some excellent ideas. It’s a short interview (about 20 minutes) but a lot of good information.

Be sure and subscribe to the show (on the home page) and you’ll get interviews with all the amazing and interesting people to whom Todd Schnick is connected. I’m pleased to be one of them!