Evaluate Yourself

Perform Your Own Performance Evaluation

Have a chit-chat with yourself

Evaluate YourselfWhen You are self-employed you need to perform your own Performance Evaluation. Having a chit-chat with yourself to truly evaluate your performance. Yes, you might think but how do I do that?

The other day I was reading a Swedish blog, Lisa Nielsen, where she write about Dr Phil and how identify and handle your inner voices that are in your head constantly pushing and saying things about yourself. These inner voices can destroy your self-esteem, your actions, your way of looking at yourself and how you perform. They can be so terrible that they make you do nothing and you achieve nothing. Lisa Nielsen continues in the blog about practical examples of how you do exercises that Dr Phil recommends. One exercise involved to identify your inner voices every second hour, look at them and listen to what they had said during the last two hours and write it down.

Reflection is necessary

I think that this is a great way of getting to know yourself and gives you a possibility to gain more confidence in yourself and the ability to grow to what you want to become. By reflecting on your inner voice, you can be more aware of what you want to say to yourself without judging oneself, and to keep being objective. You know the first person to judge you, is yourself. That better stop, right? There are many among us that are really scared of what other people would think of you, that is very common. But if you can accept yourself and stop to judge yourself, you won’t worry about what others think of you. What are you going to do about your judgement of yourself?

So back to the performance evaluation. Look at what you have done during a set time, be concise, constructive and as honest as you can. Write it down. Then leave it for a day, pick it up and re-read what you just written. Look at what you did well and what you could improve. Set measurement for the next coming set time frame and create goals. If it is a long-term goal, remember to make time for follow-ups and if it is shorter goals, write down what you are going to do and what task and when you are to do them. Remember, this is later your evaluation of your own work. Reflection is very important.

Give yourself your own advise

Have you ever though about the advice you give to others, could be as good for yourself? Have you ever asked yourself for your own advice? I mean most times we are quick to give advise and recommendations that are much of value by people around us. If yo can ever give good advise to others, why not ask yourself first? Think of your questions as if you were to giving advise to a business partner, family member or very dear friend. What would your answer be then? You would give them the best recommendation that you could come up with, right? Try it, what have you got to loose?

So back to what I was saying earlier, start to listen to what your inner voice is saying, start to be aware, aware of your potential. You can not change anything if you aren’t aware of what you want to change.

Never stop believing in yourself – remember you do your thing best, no one can do it in your way, because it is you.

All the best,

Carina Asp
Any Solution Possible

Get Your Press Release Published

Five Winning Tips For Writing Press Releases

The other day I was at an interesting workshop held by a former journalist. She was such a great person and I learnt so much. Today she is not working as a journalist, but she has been working with communication for over 15 years. Today she is doing workshops at companies to help them write effective and correct press releases so that they get published. It was such an eye-opener and I learnt so much. I thought that I would share these tips with you in this post.

She spoke about different angles on a press release, both from the company’s point of view, the journalist and the reader. It is very common that press releases are written in an “internal language” so that only people within the business or industry understands the article. Think about it – How on earth is any journalist going to choose that press release if he/she doesn’t understand what it is about?

How To Tickle The Curiosity Of A Journalist

When journalists are looking for press releases to publish they need, first of all, to understand what the article is about. Then they start to look for certain stuff in the article. The article should catch the reader right away, should highlight the most important, be easy to read, not have too much information, written in short sentences, personal and short. Use everyday language, not difficult and too formal. Most of all, they need pictures! Always always pictures, this could be the deciding decision to getting published.

They also look to see if these three criteria is met:

  1. What does the reader know?
  2. What does the reader need to know?
  3. What does a few readers need know?

The Five Winning Tips

Most importantly they have Five winning criteria that you as a writer need to adapt to in your article. The article should include the following:

  1. Real people
    1. You should have people in you article
    2. What does it mean and to who?
    3. Give a perspective of a “outside in” feeling from for example a company
    4. Emotions are more important than fact
  2. Conflicts
    1. They love to have “David vs Goliath” scenario
  3. Drama
    1. Negativity always beat the positive
  4. Surprising element
    1. Divergent and different
  5. Affect a lot of people

I hope that you find value in these few tips about writing press releases. I wish you all the best with your writing and I hope to see your article in the press soon.

All the best,

Carina Asp
Any Solution Possible


Think Outside Traditional Marketing

“-My Competitor Is Opening A New Store NEXT DOOR!”

BreadEarlier in my career, I was faced with this statement from a business owner having a store located in a very small town.
This was a major issue for the him and I had to answer him quite urgently. The competitor had much more resources than the business owner, who had no resources in terms of time, money and manpower. He was stressed about the situation and wondered how he could possibly keep the current customers and continue to generate new business in to the store.

He turned to me for help since he realized that he needed marketing skills and did not have the knowledge himself. He had skills in what he was doing and is very resourceful within that segment. A nisch that I didn’t know anything about. But since marketing is a skill that you can apply to any industry, segment or business – I, of course, came up with a lot of ideas. (I will not specify all of them here, but I will probably talk about them later in my other blog posts.)

I started to ask the business owner what he knew about the customer and the efforts he was making with the current marketing activity:

  • what age are the customers?
  • gender of customer?
  • what interests do they have?
  • what do they read?
  • are they active online?
  • why are they buying at your store?
  • what is unique for your store?
  • how do you communicate with them?
  • how are you getting the current customers to return to the store?
  • why should they buy from you?
  • and so on (I think that you get the idea)

It took a while for us to go through these questions and clearly identify his target market. We quite soon found out that if he had a customer come in to his store, they would usually stay loyal to his store due to the knowledge, competence and service that his business provided. We also understood that the little marketing he was doing was via word-of-mouth among his current customers. His customers were recommending his store to other people! He was practicing relationship marketing without even knowing it. So we had a great opportunity to increase that activity even more. Which, by the way, also is one of the cheapest way to generate loyal customers and new customers.

I am sure that you have heard about the saying “getting a new customer is more expensive then keeping an old”, this means that to develop your current customers business and increase an income through them, is easier and cheaper, because you already have them and need not finding new resources or funding to find new customers through expensive advertising. You can sell other products and know that they will trust you from day one, because they know you and your expertise from previous purchase.

What if I don’t know the answers

A lot of the questions above, the business owner could not answer. He had no clue. I knew that he had a database with his current customers and asked if he was communicating to them regularly online? Which he didn’t do and almost never. By communicating with your customers, you can make your customers loyal to your business, even if you would raise costs on products. It gives you an opportunity to provide your customers with offers, know-how and information about your business and why they should come back and buy from you time and time again.

Bread recipe

We had to “walk” a different path. So I asked, –“What do YOU like to do in your spare time?”. It was a bit of an awkward silence and then he said -“I like baking“. He was interested in baking odd bread from Germany! WOW!! (I thought), that was a great angle to attack customers and have them to remember him and his business. It could definitely start the talk that would to the walk to his store.  What an opportunity!

What I suggested he would do (besides a long list of many other ideas) was to write down the recipe of his favorite bread. Of course he started to wonder why …

My Suggestion

Well, I continued, what you can do is to write a letter (digital or snail mail) and wish your customers “Merry Christmas” and share with them something that you love, being personal. After christmas, you invite them to a breakfast seminar/workshop, for an hour and a half (since the customers are morning people) and serve this bread at the same time as you are presenting a product related to your business that you know would benefit the customers in their business. They will recognize or start to wonder if they are having the same bread that you sent a recipe for earlier to eat for breakfast. Of course you will remind them. You will grow personal engagement with your customers, which then in return will give you more loyalty when building a relationship among your customers. From the customers perspective, they will have learnt something about your business and/or product and what you can offer them and possibly consider to purchase an item or service from you.

This particular incident happened around christmas and it was a perfect way of giving something to the customers, sharing something personal, building a tighter relationship and growing your business. Relationship marketing is practiced every day, and most customers enjoy coming back to a store where they know someone a little more personal. This is not something that a major, larger competitor will practice, since they often are focused on selling products – fast and often doing traditional advertising.

He had to dare a little. Go outside his old way of thinking with this marketing. Would you have dared to be different?

Of course, you could practice an advertising campaign around this as well, but his budget was tight and he had no resources for advertising. This was just one idea of many that he could have practiced and of course he had to look at it as a long term strategy and continue to build his relationship marketing into the business to get even more successful loyal relationships with his customers.

Here is the bread recipe I would share:

Fröknäcke recipe









My point is – dare to be different. Be Unique In Your Marketing!

Best of luck,

Carina Asp
Any Solution Possible