The Crazy Things That Happened To Me In Dallas

badflightI broke through my personal barriers of leaving my 5-year-old (and my 45-year-old) behind for the first time for a chance to grow my coaching business at a US conference. So many wild and wonderful things happened and in case you’re also going to be trying on new and scary things to grow your own biz, I thought I’d share them with you and save you the hassle.

My Pinky Got Me Stuck At Customs

Perhaps one of my biggest worries was that I’d be questioned at the US border about why I was an exhibitor, potentially taking American jobs away from Americans. I asked a thousand people about what to say or not say if questioned. The answers varied wildly, some saying they lied about having a booth and others saying it was completely safe to be honest about exhibiting at a US trade show. Armed with this dubious information, I got my Nexus card out (the pre-approved security card that allows a simple finger print and eye scan to fast track you through customs) and went to their automated machines. When I couldn’t get my fingerprints to register on one machine, I kept hopping to the next one and the next one in a panic. I started to get noticed by the guards so I just hit ‘accept’ and printed out a receipt. On the receipt was a cut-off picture of my head and a giant black X. Not good. Then when I gave it to the officer at the gate, he asked me to step in the ‘little room’. Oh my God, I thought here comes the cavity search. Well, I learned that it was because my Pinky finger hadn’t registered strong enough and next time I should press my other hand on it to get a better impression. Without a single question, I was allowed through. Phew.

My Breast Milk Got Me Clients

The first morning of the conference, I volunteered to take the microphone and talk about what made me happy in the breakout session. In front of hundreds of women, I told the story of how I’d stopped scuba-diving when I gave birth because when I was breastfeeding, I was worried about the pressure squeezing milk out into my wetsuit. I have no idea how that story came out but if you know me, you wouldn’t be surprised about it. I got 2 clients and many many comments from countless women throughout the 4 days I was there because of that story. My point about being authentic and unafraid to spill your truths was proven.

What I Got From Air Canada’s 10-hour Delay

After an exhausting 4 days, I was ready to go home and kiss my little guy’s chubby belly. I got to the airport and 5 hours later, my flight that kept getting delayed was cancelled. It then took 2 hours for the hotel vouchers and rebookings to be done. All this happened with not a single word of information, apology or update from the 3 Air Canada employees who were overwhelmed by the event. Most people in the line up after an 8-hour wait were surprisingly poised and patient. Some started screaming at the staff and yes, they were served first. People became friends, commiserated together and bonded.

A very smart frequent traveler was the one person who, as soon as he heard about the cancellation, hopped onto his tablet, rebooked his own flight online and left without waiting for a voucher. I myself did the same 1 hour later with my darling hubby’s help on the phone. So if this happens to you, leave. You can rebook yourself from your own hotel. Also, the airline will reimburse your hotel, just send in your receipt. Those poor people didn’t know so they waited. The next day, after another 3 hour wait, I sat next to a gentleman who is going to become my next VIP client. How’s that for destiny?

When you scare yourself and leave the safety of your everyday life, you go so much further than you could ever imagine!

Need more chicken soup for your biz? Follow me on Twitter, friend me on Facebook, watch me on YouTube or connect with me on LinkedIn –and let’s talk

What My Superhero Power Would Be

picnicmanWhen I found out that a multimillionaire, multi-talented serial entrepreneur named Tina Roth Eisenberg credits her success with her ability to answer one single question, I was intrigued. The question was:

If you were a superhero, what would your superpower be?

What The Successful Said

She said that almost all the successful people she met were able to answer this question instantly. For example according to the Inc. magazine article, John Maeda, who led the MIT Media Lab and Rhode Island School of Design, responded with “curiosity.” Maria Popova, who curates the popular Brain Pickings blog by reading 12-15 books a week, said “doggedness.” Eisenberg’s own superpower? Enthusiasm.

What I Said

I really loved this question because it made me realize that my own answer is the focus of my business and it’s simply this:

To enable people to overcome their childhood crap around money (which translates to their ability to market and sell themselves).

Yup, this is my life mission.

Your Focus

If you think about what your greatest mission in life and in your business is, then wouldn’t you naturally want that to be your superpower?

For example, a client who is a financial advisor recently decided to become ‘the business tax deductions expert’. Imagine a superhero looking at your finances and finding missing deductions to hand you unexpected savings out of the blue! How about another client who helps women get over hot flashes through simple dietary changes? That’s a superpower any woman would love.

If you don’t have a niche, you probably haven’t met me or haven’t had the pleasure to speak to me about this topic that’s my personal frustration with businesses I meet. I try not to cringe every time someone tells me that they work with everyone and do everything.

I want to convince every one I meet from every industry and every walk of life that indeed, life is sweeter when your business has a focus (a niche) and you can’t become a superhero if you don’t have one main strength. Otherwise the Xmen franchise would star a single hero and wouldn’t that be boring to watch?

Need more chicken soup for your biz? Follow me on Twitter, friend me on Facebook, watch me on YouTube or connect with me on LinkedIn –and let’s talk

The Absolute Fastest Way To Find WHERE Your Ideal Clients Hang Out (VIDEO)

Hi, this is Chala Dincoy from your no-nonsense marketing coach who gives your small business a booster shot in the arm. In this video, I’m going to address THE most asked question I get when I meet small businesses—WHERE do I find my ideal clients?

If this question has plagued you as a small business owner, I guarantee it’s because a. you don’t have a specific group of ideal clients, in other words a niche or b. you don’t do market research to find out more about your target clients.

So if you don’t know where to find your ideal clients, start by focusing on WHO that ideal client is. Then do the research by asking THEM–yes as crazy as it sounds– ask your ideal clients where they hang out in large groups with others who are just like them. Ask them what they read or what social media groups they are active in. Ask them what clubs or associations they belong to. Ask them what trade shows and conferences they attend. Ask them what charities they support or what major suppliers they use. Then use various marketing activities to get into their world. That’s where you find your ideal clients—WHERE THEY TOLD YOU THEY’D BE! So how exactly do you ask them, you might be wondering. I recommend giving something to potential clients BEFORE asking for their help in getting this information.

My clients offer free lunch and learns or a bonus assessment or a free makeover in exchange for a 5 minute informational interview. Most of my clients get clients during the research phase. You see how you can’t go wrong with your marketing if you just ask your clients where they go? Then you go with them! After all, marketing is simply telling your ideal client that you can help them with their pain.

To intercept them with this message consistently, you need to know WHERE they are. So get out there, first ask them where they go and then be present with your message in their world—over and over and over again.

Need more chicken soup for your biz? Follow me on Twitter, friend me on Facebook, watch me on YouTube or connect with me on LinkedIn –and let’s talk


Still Bragging About Yesterday? Then You Haven’t Done Much Today

Pinballl Clemons

I met and fell in love with a man called Pinball Clemons last week. Not to worry, my husband was already in love with him. I, on the other hand had never met him.

CFL Hall of Famer,
Vice Chair of the Toronto Argonauts, Michael Clemons was a name I’d often heard in the community but due to my armchair sports allergy, I’d never personally been acquainted with.

Well, did he ever blow me away when I saw him speak for the first time last week. He had some doozy quotes that I LOVED and resonated so much with. Here are a few of them.

The first zinger was:

“Excuses are like belly buttons, everyone’s got one and none of them are good for anything”

I laughed out loud at that one. I want so badly to say this so many times during so many conversations I have with business women I’m networking with. (Not clients though, with them I tell them how it is and I call them on their excuses. Most times they love me for it, other times I piss them off.)

You know who doesn’t have excuses? Successful people, that’s who. They take responsibility and change their lives if something isn’t working. Victims blame everything and everyone except themselves for their circumstances and wait to be rescued by the miraculous change in the ‘excuse’ condition that’s responsible for their situation.

“If what you’ve done yesterday still sounds good today, then you haven’t done much today”

I loved this one so much that I made it the title of this post. I found that I was doing this a lot. I kept talking about how I tripled my revenue last year. What about this year? I’m happy to say that I’m 132% ahead of year to date same time last year right now. However, I have to double that if I want to reach my true goal. So as Janet Jackson would say ‘what have you done for me lately?’

“If a paralyzed 15 year old can golf, you as an entrepreneur can’t be afraid to take risks”

Pinball cried when he told the story of his true hero, a teenager who became paralyzed from the neck down, who was unable to move or speak and could only communicate through an interpreter who read his blinks. He talked about how if this little boy could still have the spirit to get up each and every day and live his very difficult life in joy, going as far as golfing while strapped to a lever and having his dad’s help for his swing, then we as entrepreneurs didn’t have the right to be afraid of discomfort.

I really loved the lessons contained in these golden nuggets that fell from Pinball’s lips and I live by them. Who is inspiring you today?

Need more chicken soup for your biz? Follow me on Twitter, friend me on Facebook, watch me on YouTube or connect with me on LinkedIn –and let’s talk





Happy Birthday To Me- 10 Things I Wish I Knew 10 Years Ago


Notice the funky couch behind me

Yes, I’m finally 60 years old.. (not really but I like the admiration and shock when I announce that to people, ha!) As I reflect back on the past decade, I want my small business clients and friends to learn from my failures and successes (and there have been plenty of both, let me tell you!)

Here goes…

1. Having Your Own Business Is Way Better Than Having A Boss

Look, I loved my last boss, but he was still a boss. He had a boss, who had a boss. I couldn’t have the freedom to do or say the things that I wanted to as much as I do while owning my own business. In addition, I make way more money than I’ve ever made as an employee. I wish I truly had had the courage to leave 10 years ago and start my business way sooner.

2. I Am Thinner Than I Think

I always am and I always will be thinner and more attractive than I ever feel. When I look back at pictures 10 years ago and reflect on how I was always dieting and exercising and worrying about my looks, I see how silly it was. Sillier still is that I still catch myself doing it.

3. Being A Mom Is Exactly As Big A Deal As I Thought

Having my little guy after 4 miscarriages in the last 6 years has given me such powerful perspective about how important the ability to actually have the privilege of being a parent is. Any time I catch myself complaining about being exhausted from parenting, I remind myself of this thing that I kinda suspected but never really knew a decade ago.

4. The Virtual World Is The Future Of Relationships

I met my beloved hubby Andy on a virtual dating site called Lavalife 7 years ago. Today, the projections are that in another decade 1 out of ever 2 relationship will start from a virtual platform, be it a dating or a social media site. I also see this phenomenon in my business. 10 years ago, I wish I knew the depth of this online world’s impact on our relationships so that I could be a giant and an expert who has bigger connections and networks than I do today.

5. I Know Enough To Be Successful

A decade ago, I started pouring thousands upon thousands of dollars into various forms of coach training that I never really ended up needing or using in my marketing consulting work today. If I could’ve believed that I knew enough and WAS enough, I would’ve started my business much sooner.

6. It’s OK To Speak My Mind

I was still trying to be the corporate-good-girl 10 years ago so no, I didn’t really say exactly what was on my mind. I was forced to ignore the dead-woods, the bullies, the egomaniacs that I worked with. Today, I make a living out of speaking my mind and surrounding myself with exactly the kind of person that energizes me. I couldn’t be happier about it. Wish I knew then, what I know now.

7. It’s Possible To Make A Lot Of Money Without Killing Yourself

The main thing that always stopped me from having my own business was the thought that I would have to completely neglect my home, my family life, my friends and my own health to achieve any kind of momentum. As someone who made almost twice my last corporate pay cheque last year, I’m happy to report that it was a false belief that held me back.

8. We Can Manifest Everything We Want In Our Lives

A decade ago, I wanted a loving and hunky husband, a baby and to have my own coaching practice. I literally had to heal myself from bad relationships, horrible jobs and selfish friendships to be able to attract EVERYTHING I wanted into my life. I have gotten almost everything that was on my vision board that I made a decade ago. Wish I knew then that it’s totally possible to do that, I would’ve felt so much better while swimming through the shite.

9. Relationships Are More Important Than Money Or Jobs

When an ex-boss got canned and the replacement who was his direct-report refused to return his calls, I realized something: Jobs come and go. Clients come and go. Money and opportunities are literally everywhere. However, relationships are everlasting. The only things that have followed me from my corporate world into this strange new entrepreneurial one have been my deep friendships. If I knew this a decade ago, I would’ve invested more into my relationships, regardless of the job or the gain.

10. It’s Never Too Late For Anything

A decade ago, at the ripe age of 35 (aha, now you know how old I really am!) I thought that I was over the hill for marriage, for kids or to even start a business. While all my friends around me were settling into comfortable motherhood and happy marriages, I felt ancient. I’ve learned that you’re only unhappy with your age if you’re unhappy with your life. Today, I feel like I could be a 100 years old and if I had the life I have now, I’d still be shouting about my birthday from the rooftops.

Happy Birthday to me!

Need more chicken soup for your biz? Follow me on Twitter, friend me on Facebook, watch me on YouTube or connect with me on LinkedIn –and let’s talk