Sklar Technology Partners - April 2020

APRIL 2020

I love cooking for people. I’m always trying to make something awesome for my family at home. Cooking a great meal and sharing great recipes are some of the ways I show love. Since I already share some pretty great meal recipes inside my newsletter, this month I want to discuss a different kind of recipe. Based on my experience, here’s my recipe for business success. INGREDIENTS • 1 cup of opportunity • 3 tbsp of the right team • A dash of the secret ingredient DIRECTIONS 1. Make your opportunities from scratch. Some people think they have to wait for opportunities to appear. If you do this, you’ll never be successful. You can’t sit around waiting for convenient opportunities. You have to get out there and make your own opportunities from scratch. 2. Mix in the right team. Some years ago, I had an engineer walk out suddenly to work for someone who was a client at the time. That engineer took two other people with them. Suddenly we found ourselves in a dire situation. Facing a crisis, I got some good advice from my mastermind group and hired a headhunting agency to find some qualified candidates for me. I touched on this last month, when I covered why you want to be your vendor’s favorite client. This month, I want to focus on the people I got. 7462 Old Hickory Drive, Mechanicsville, VA 23111 • RANDY’S SECRET STUFF The Ultimate Recipe for Success


is the exact same thing. You could be the most experienced and the most talented person in your field, but if you don’t have passion for what you do, it’s going to show. If you’re not passionate about the work you do, why are you even doing it? This isn’t to say you have to love everything about your job. But there should be something you look forward to doing each day. My passion comes from being able to solve a problem when no one else can. Earlier this year, I got a call from a client who’d canceled their contract four years ago. They’d been hit with a ransomware attack, and the IT company they’d hired had stopped responding to them in the middle of the crisis. We went down there to take a look. Our team was able to save their data and a bunch of resources when no one else could. We couldn’t put everything back together for them, but these folks were in a lot better shape than they had been that morning. It felt really good to see the relief on their faces. I’m passionate about being able to come in and turn a situation around because we know our stuff. There you have it! My recipe for success. It all looks so simple and straightforward when it’s written out like this, but it’s not. Like any good recipe, cooking up success means making a mess in the kitchen.

No successful business is a one-person show. I don’t care how good you are. If the rest of your team isn’t quality, your clients are going to know it, and they’re not going to stick around. Losing those engineers turned out to be one of the best things that ever happened to our company. We replaced them with much stronger people who turned out to be a better fit for Sklar Technology Partners. Finally having the right team allowed us to grow more and go farther than we ever could have. 3. Add the secret ingredient — passion. How do you bring a recipe from good to great? You have to cook with love. A meal made with care always tastes better than something someone slapped together and threw onto the plate. Business

I make my opportunities through marketing. I use the Dream 100 strategy, creating and promoting content though emails and my newsletter in order to find my top 100 dream clients. It’s not easy to find or land you ideal clients. Part of the strategy involves building your list organically. Then I have it all funnel to a live event every six months. To make those opportunities and find my Dream 100, I offer valuable information people can access by giving us their email address. And when I say valuable, I mean valuable.We provide quality information and strategies that can actually benefit people and their businesses. It’s not cheap stuff they could find on Google or another sales pitch. Making your own opportunities means becoming truly valuable.

What are you waiting for? Roll up your sleeves and get cooking.


And Better Business Will Follow ‘START WITH WHY’

W ithout question, the worst part of being a manager is firing someone. The second worst part? Hiring someone to replace them. Finding the right talent in a limited pool of applicants can be tricky. That’s why Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, professor of business psychology at both the University College London and Columbia University, and Jonathan Kirschner, founder and CEO of AIIR Consulting, developed seven strategies for hiring top talent. 1. Think ahead — Don’t just hire someone who can fill your needs today. Look for someone with the skills and abilities you will need going forward. 2. Focus on the right traits — Past performance isn’t the best indicator of talent. Neither are hard skills. Yes, a computer engineer needs to know how to code, but they should also have soft skills, like determination or creative problem-solving abilities, that will allow them to grow in the future. 3. Don’t go outside when you can stay insid e — External hires will take longer to adapt to your company, and they have higher exit rates. Look for valuable talent that already exists internally before you search outside your company. 4. Think inclusively —Most managers tend to hire people who remind them of themselves. Resist this impulse. The right hire is often someone who is different than you or anyone on your team. They’ll bring in fresh ideas. Plus, as Chamorro-Premuzic and Kirschner point out, “... companies with a diverse talent pipeline tend to have better financial results.” 5. Be data-driven —When you decide to hire someone, you should have solid data and evidence to support that decision. Then, you should set clear performance goals so you can be certain new hires are meeting expectations. 6. Think plural rather than singular — Look at the needs of your team. Will a new hire work with the existing team? Will they be able to complement each other? A highly qualified candidate isn’t worth anything if they can’t work well with your team. 7. Make people better — Good managers don’t just tell people to get better; they actively help their employees become better. Managers should be like coaches. If an employee is struggling, then help them get back on track. And if an employee shows great potential, then give them opportunities to thrive. In addition to being strong leaders, managers also have to be talent agents and bring the “right” people onto their teams. These strategies can help you do just that. HOW GOOD MANAGERS FIND GREAT EMPLOYEES 7 Strategies to Hire Better Talent

“There are only two ways to influence human behavior: You can manipulate it, or you can inspire it.” –Simon Sinek

It can often be hard to clearly articulate what you do for a living. That means it can be difficult to explain your vision to potential clients and customers, which then makes it harder to convince them to purchase your product or services. In “Start With Why,” author Simon Sinek illustrates the importance of explaining to others why you do the business you do rather than explaining what you do or how you do it. Sinek argues that when people start figuring out the “why” in what they do, it inspires action from others in a way that discussing the “what” can’t. Talking about the “why” engages emotions; analyzing the “what” is purely logical. When you try to sell something to people based on “what,” you rely on specific manipulations like price and product details. But if you help people understand why you do what you do by revealing the real purpose and intention behind your reasons, you build a sense of trust. This trust leads to loyalty, and loyalty means that person comes back to do business with you and also refers your business to others. This is how businesses grow!

Figuring out your “why” is a process of discovery, not invention. In order to discover it, you can turn to three key strategies.

• Look backward at the original motivation for starting your business. What specific problem were you trying to solve, and why was it important to you to solve it? • Look outward by asking those around you why they spend time with you or why a customer buys from you. You can learn why people are drawn to you and your business this way.

Look inward by identifying a bigger vision that you wish to contribute to. What do you believe in? What really matters to you?

“Start With Why” teaches readers how to go about discovering their “why,” then instructs them on how to effectively use that information to help their business. It also helps them unleash their business’s vast potential that has remained untapped until now.

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TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING 3 Healthy Foods You’re Overconsuming P ortion sizes aren’t just for unhealthy treats and fatty entrees. A healthy diet demands keeping an eye on how much you eat at every meal, including healthy RED KIDNEY BEANS Red kidney beans are an excellent source of plant-based protein for those looking to cut down on the meat in their diet. But be mindful of how you prepare these beans. Raw red kidney beans

foods and beverages. Overconsuming even healthy foods can come with major health risks. Here are a few healthy foods and drinks you might be overconsuming.

contain a toxin called phytohaemagglutinin. This toxin is removed by boiling your beans for at least 10 minutes. Eating even a small amount of improperly cooked kidney beans can lead to severe nausea and vomiting.


Dark, leafy greens like spinach, beet greens, and Swiss chard are full of essential nutrients like iron, folate, and vitamins A and C. However, these greens are also high in oxalic acid. Consuming too much oxalic acid can lead to kidney stones, abdominal pain, low blood pressure, and vomiting. Keep in mind that you’d have to consume an outrageous amount of dark, leafy green to experience these symptoms. As long as they’re eaten in moderation, dark, leafy greens are part of a healthy diet.


a problem for ultramarathon runners and people who force themselves to drink too much water. If you just drink some water when you’re thirsty, you should be fine. You can avoid the risks of overconsuming healthy foods and drinks by just keeping an eye on your portion sizes. Stick to all things in moderation to avoid the pain of having too much of a good thing.

Most people are drinking far less water than they should be, but it is possible to drink too much water as well. Water intoxication is when extreme water overconsumption dilutes the sodium levels in blood. This condition is called hyponatremia and can lead to impaired brain function and even death. That said, hyponatremia is typically only

Inspired by

Beet, Goat Cheese, and Arugula Salad

This crowd-pleasing dish is sure to be the biggest hit at your next gathering. And it’s good for you, too!

Ingredients •

• • • • •

6 cups fresh arugula

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar 3 tbsp shallots, thinly sliced

1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped 1/4 cup dried cranberries or cherries

• • • • •

1 tbsp honey

1/2 avocado, cubed

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil Salt and pepper to taste 6 beets, peeled and quartered

2 oz crumbled goat cheese

Directions 1. Heat oven to 450 F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. 2. In a medium bowl, combine vinegar, shallots, and honey. 3. Gradually whisk olive oil into the mixture and season with salt and pepper. 4. In a small bowl, toss the beets in dressing until they are coated. 5. Place coated beets on baking sheet and roast them for 12 minutes. Set the beets aside and allow them to cool. 6. In a large bowl, toss arugula, walnuts, and berries with the remaining vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper. 7. Top salad with beets, avocado, and goat cheese.

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7462 Old Hickory Drive Mechanicsville, VA 23111 804-730-2628


Inside This Issue

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Recipe for Success The Most Important Question You Can Ask Stop Losing Great Talent! Are You Overeating Healthy Foods? Beet, Goat Cheese, and Arugula Salad Top Mental Strategies for Your Fitness Routine



Finding Motivation on Those Tough Days


people will wake up and think that the gym or an at-home workout isn’t possible that day as they lay in bed. Some people will psych themselves out of working out because their time is limited, or they worry about how tired they’ll be after the workout (especially after or before a busy day). Instead of thinking of reasons you can’t or don’t want to go, focus your mind only on the task of starting. Stepping into your workout space will often give you the mental push to actually work out. It’s also best to leave the all-or- nothing mindset behind — a 45- or 55-minute workout isn’t required every single session. Life happens, and even if it’s a short exercise, your workout will actually energize you for the rest of your day. Pushing Yourself to the Limit Studies have found that the most successful people share grit: the ability to work hard and endure even the most difficult times. Workouts will burn, and the motions may feel uncomfortable or even painful, so it’s crucial to have the grit to push yourself to the limit. Rather than give up, you should embrace the pain and see it as a sign you’re growing stronger. Adjust your inner vocabulary. Anything that seems “uncomfortable” should be reconsidered as “intense” but something you can work through. Of course, be careful of injury pains!

Whether your New Year’s workout routine is finally embedded in your schedule or you’re still trying to make it happen, always remember that your mind is just as important as your body. On some days, you may feel like anything is possible, and on others, it may feel impossible to even get out of bed. Don’t worry, that’s totally normal! There’s no reason to feel ashamed if you’re struggling with gaining steam and motivation for your workout. Here are some mental strategies to help you get firmly into your routine this year and the years to come. Start Your Workout What’s the hardest part of working out? For most people, it’s not the heavy weights or the long cardio sessions — it’s actually beginning. Sometimes,

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