By Dr. Patricia Laino

Your Outer Image: I’m Dr. Pat Laino, the Director and instructor at the Business Training Institute here in Utica. My job is to teach those who want to start up their own business the skills to open a successful business.

One of the keys is how you look and carry yourself which is vital to your success in business. Initially, I start with the “top to bottom” profile of a successful entrepreneur. This is an assessment tool that I created several years ago when I, myself, wanted to attract customers (and money) for a new business venture that I was launching.  You start at the top with your hair and proceed down to your shoes. 

It is up to you to track the latest professional image so that you are up-to-date at all times. I always dress for success because you never know when you will meet a prospective customer. 

Once you have achieved a winning appearance, put the time and efforts into keeping it while climbing the ladder of success. When I get ready to leave the house everyday I look into the mirror and say;  “Would I buy from me and do I look the part of a highly successful entrepreneur”? 

Your Inner Image: If you want to sell your products or services, then you have to get rid of the fears and gain confidence by believing in yourself. Associate with “winners” and become the expert who knows all about their business and customers. To gain stronger speaking power, lower your voice an octave, avoid being the mumbler or rambler and pilot-test your conversation with family and friends until you get it “right.”

The way you should communicate depends on the current situation and the outcome that you want to achieve.

Your Elevator Speech: All of my entrepreneurs learn and practice their Elevator Speech from day one.  Suppose that you are in an elevator and someone asks about your business. What do you tell people when they ask you? 

To respond to this, you are to write a 30 second commercial about your business, its product or service in about 85 words. Memorize and practice it so that you are prepared to recite it when the opportunity arises. 

Through the years there is one fatal behavior that I see over and over again in some of my entrepreneur students. This is not listening to the advice of experts in the field of business.  Stakes are too high not to heed what these experts say. The reality check is to listen to these successful entrepreneurs 

I recommend that anyone thinking of going into business listen and follow through on the advice of the experts. Don’t be offended when you’re told that your business goals are unrealistic and that you need to go back to the drawing board. Listen from the very beginning by learning how to listen.  Some specific rules for face-to-face communications are to listen and talk in turns, ask questions for clarification and repeat what you want to communicate.

There is a lot at stake if entrepreneur students don’t listen because they run the chance of failing at the “hardest game in town” that is succeeding in their business.  It means those students that don’t listen will settle for less, work longer, harder and create crippling stress in their lives. I’ve see some students become easily distracted, don’t listen, don’t’ follow advice. 

My role as an effective instructor is to pay attention to my student’s entrepreneurial goals, translate these into business strategies and provide them the steps needed to successfully achieve their dream of starting their own business. You too can accomplish this by participating in my 60 hour Small Business Training Program.

The next training program begins on Tuesday, September 18, 2018, here at the Delta Hotel in downtown Utica. You can find out more details about enrolling in this training program by calling my office at (315) 733 9848 and asking for Dr. Pat.     

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