Winning and Losing to Win… Again.

IMG_0002We’re not strangers to these stories: The world-class athlete who experiences an epic defeat in the arena who is seldom heard or seen again; the business mogul who has experienced extraordinary success and is blindsided by competitive forces who has to shut down his business to retire almost broke; the company’s top sales performer with an enviable lifestyle, ideal family, luxury home and big boy toys… suddenly laid off and watching his life being transformed into an episode of Jerry Springer; or the highly respected, battle-tested military officer who was entrusted with life & death daily decisions over hundreds of men or women, who is now unable to find credible employment in the civilian world.

What’s really brutal is this: struggling and paying the price to win, overcoming adversity, tasting success, and then losing it all or becoming broke after being recognized as one the best. This painful sequence of events breaks the hearts of winners and while winning is a habit (an addiction of sorts)… so is losing. It also explains why many are tempted to comprise their moral values just to get an edge on the competition.

The habits of a winner are unlike that of the common man or woman and when a habitual winner is taken out of their game or profession… it can get ugly for everyone within their sphere of influence because they aren’t able to express their authentic best selves. Winners and high performers are like lions – instinctual hunters who when at their best are free, resent being kept, caged, domesticated, or dependent on others to be fed.

So what do you do when you’ve already experienced success, but maybe you’ve been out of the game for a while and you feel stuck? Because winners never really quit, they purpose themselves to find a new game in which to play and compete so that their instincts to win (though repressed) can be authentically expressed.

So, if you or someone you know has ever stood on a podium to receive a medal, worn a championship ring, had a trophy or plaque presented to them, coached or taught others how to win, or if you’ve ever been publicly recognized for exceptional performance and achievement, we should talk. My name is Christopher Bell, III and I’m here to tell you… It ain’t over. You CAN win… again – CONTACT ME

Win,

~Chris Bell

Do You Understand Your Position?

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The good news: You can’t lose what you never had. The bad news: The “job” was never yours in the first place.

Sometimes it’s hard to debunk long-standing institutional myths (even when the facts assault our senses) but you’ve always known that you don’t own the job right?  The job belongs to the company. Don’t believe me? Get fired or move on and “Your” so-called job will be posted on LinkedIn by next week as the words “it’s nothing personal, it’s just business” echo in your mind. (Hmm… your mortgage payment and kids education isn’t personal?) Jobs are positions that people move in, up, and out of all the time. Yes or no?

So now, you’re connecting the dots, coming out of denial, and it’s sinking in: you’ve been renting your youth; outsourcing your creativity, energy, and education; and traded time with your loved ones for a bi-weekly bank deposit, a pay stub, and the illusion of security so that someone else can live their dreams. The cold truth is, things are EXACTLY the way they should be. Those who show courage and take calculated risks that succeed, should be rewarded. Those that play scared and are committed to a pyramid (go check the company org chart) have little chance of owning the company they work for and when they can’t work… eventually they don’t get paid.

IMG_3262.JPGSince you’re probably a smart, educated, disciplined, team-player with character and personal drive, you understand the price being paid to have no leverage, no equity, and no ownership interests in that which you give your best effort and most  of your time. Still, having a job is a VERY good and necessary transitional position because you get to learn as you earn, build powerful professional networks on the company’s dime, establish expertise, and develop a practice of discipline and habit of winning in business. Even if the job is temporary in nature… it’s a great first step to taking control of your career.

The question is this: if you’re working a job today, what’s your exit strategy? Have you built and tested your “Plan B” before it’s needed?  Do you have a great idea, product, or service in mind that excites you and gives you leverage? Have you thought about launching your own business and do you look into other ways of earning money?

Contact me: Maybe… just maybe, I can help.

Win,

Chris Bell 3rd

Chris Bell 3rd: Coaching for Big Results

2013-03-29 21.57.05“My name is Joey Price and I’m the CEO of Jumpstart:HR, LLC. My company provides full-service HR support to small, emerging businesses in the United States and international firms looking to establish or grow their presence in the US.  My company helps business owners grow their firms with confidence while alleviating the sting of the inevitable burden of HR headaches.

Working with Chris Bell 3rd helped me in a lot of ways. As a leader, he helped me grow courage in weak-spot areas that existed in my mental focus. As a sales person he helped me strengthen my sales process. As a friend, we were able to connect on life issues – which helped me trust his business acumen all the more.”

My name is Chris Bell 3rd  and I love to see people win in life. As an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship, I had the privilege of being a business coach and mentor for Joey Price, the CEO of Jumpstart: HR, LLC who was recently recognized in the Baltimore Business Journal Top 40, Under 40 and featured in the University of Maryland University College commercial spot (you just watched) which aired just before a Baltimore Ravens NFL preseason game a few weeks ago.

If you’ve ever thought about starting a business; if you’re new to business and want to increase sales and profitability; if you own a business and want to get “unstuck…” contact me to begin transforming your business AND your life.

Win,

Chris Bell 3rd

Never Touch A Public Toilet Seat Again

1505435_134694753367859_303128317_nImagine: A product for women and children that removes anxiety normally associated with using public bathroom facilities.

Well, it’s almost here,  it’s calledThe Tidy Potty” and soon you may never have to touch a public toilet seat again.

As an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship (MCE) in Columbia Maryland, I’m privileged to work with extraordinary start-up companies and visionary executives who are innovating and creating products and services that are being prepared for launch into the marketplace. One such company, Beacoupdeforce Solutions and its CEO Thomas Harris, have a patent-pending for The Tidy Potty that is certain to receive global attention and international demand.

The Tidy Potty is a discreet, portable, safe, flush-able plastic, biodegradable toilet seat cover that is sturdy, thin, and pliable, but still offers a 100%  barrier of protection against moisture, microbes, parasites and debris. Because of its cleverly thought out design of smartly placed elastic for a secure fit on any toilet seat, and (2) tabs placed strategically to denote proper placement and to enable easy removal … The Tidy Potty can be easily and securely applied and removed to and from any toilet seat, without touching any part of the toilet whatsoever.

Kudos to Thomas Harris and Beaucoupdeforce! Here’s a video about the Tidy Potty. Want to know more? Visit www.thetidypotty.com

 

Project Opportunity US Military Veterans and Social Media

51dTjt1aVmL._SY344_PJlook-inside-v2,TopRight,1,0_SH20_BO1,204,203,200_Last night I had the opportunity to share my insights and tips on leveraging social media for business with the Project Opportunity class of US military veterans graduating next week, and I left the class with a contest challenge and opportunity that would require them to uses multiple social media platforms to win a modest prize and public recognition that can be shared across multiple social media platforms. If well-done, positive public recognition for one of the Project Opportunity students may be leveraged to accelerate their business growth.

The Contest

Participation is restricted to the Project Opportunity, Glen Burnie class members of US military veterans graduating on March 18th 2014

Write a brief essay of no more than 250 words, describing the most important thing you learned during our presentation/discussion on social media, and how you plan to leverage social media to grow your business.

Publicly post your essay in the section “Leave a Comment” (just below this blog post) on this website NO LATER THAN SUNDAY, MARCH 16TH.

Optional: follow me on my business Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/ChrisBell3rd and on twitter at: https://twitter.com/Chrisbell3rd

Chris Bell 3rd will select the contest winner, and the founder of Project Opportunity, Joe Giordano will announce and present the contest winner with their prize during your graduation ceremony on March 18th 2014.

The Prize

The best-selling book “Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months” will be presented to you during next week’s Project Opportunity graduation ceremony in Glen Burnie. This book is best described as being “a month-by-month guide to a business that works” and was brilliantly written by my own executive mentor and personal friend, Melinda Emerson. Melinda is committed to ending small business failure and rated by Forbes as the #1 Influential Woman for Entrepreneurs. She’s also a small business feature writer for the New York Times, hosts #SmallBizChat on Twitter and carries the handle @smallbizlady.

Business Recognition

I’m one of two Winners of the 2010 Melinda Emerson $25,000 Entrepreneur’s Challenge. Melinda’s coaching, counsel, and support over the last four years has been priceless. But the public recognition I received opened doors and gave me access to a network I didn’t know existed.  If you’re a new business owner and entrepreneur in Project Opportunity, here’s your shot to leverage 3rd-party authentication of your winning attitude, hard work, and commitment to the growth of your business via social media.  I look forward to reading your submissions!

Best to All!

Chris Bell 3rd

Inspiration in Desperation

iStock_000010025070Medium-300x199That Terrifying Drowning Sensation: When the big deal you’ve been forecasting for 6 months has been deferred and you’re short of quota; your best team member just quit, conversations with your spouse have degraded to grunts and hand signals; sleep deprivation is a constant companion, and now you’re trying to find the bank card for the line of credit that was only going to be used for business emergencies because… it is an emergency. What now?

Drop the Ego and the Denial:  Ask for help. If you don’t know it, the people in your life already know things are unraveling and having tough times… they’re just not telling you. Privately share challenges with a select few within your inner circle of professional trusted advisors or a friend. Quite often the “problem” is not the problem. How we see the problem is the problem and a remedy may not be as complex as initially perceived. Sometimes we need others to believe in the best of us, when we can’t see it.

Relax: Stop flailing about and begin conserving your personal energy. Take your rest as seriously as you take your work. It may sound counter-intuitive, but it may be appropriate to relax and float.  To regain perspective, rest your body, meditate, reconfirm your purpose, and guard your self-talk. Is your “Why” (your reason for doing what you do) big enough to keep you motivated to persist in a sea of issues that threaten to drown you?

Sailors Get Wet: Entrepreneurs, business owners, and business development sales professionals understand that risk is inherent to their profession and sometimes the waves of fear, uncertainty and doubt can wash across our vision, throw us into previously unknown waters, and disorient us.  Mentally prepare for the challenge. The alternative is to waive control over the time, IP, and equity in your life by giving it to an employer as a W-2 employee. What’s better? There’s no right answer. You decide.

Prayer & Meditation: What do you do in your toughest moments?  Perhaps we can take a lesson from a very old book which says: “Consider it pure joy my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the resting of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:24 (NIV)

Win,

Chris Bell 3rd

“Why” Matters

2013-03-29 21.57.05As a Business Launch Coach with a specialty in business development and technology sales, I have the professional pleasure and privilege of mentoring exceptional entrepreneurs and individuals in start-up companies who are most often in the ideation and pre-launch phases of business maturity.

While most of my clients and constituents have successfully launched their companies and are on the right path to develop new products and services, or are preparing to secure their first round of investment capital, some have taken hard blows and struggle to master the fundamentals of living and enjoying a life that really “matters” after experiencing the sting of failure, teammates quitting, rejection, family instability, relational disintegration, or personal loss for the first time in their career – stuff not covered in business graduate school.

Sadly, our formal business training and education is often constructed to show people how to win in business at all costs while assuming that the achievement of business success and material gain connote personal fulfillment.  The problem: your life is not a business and launching a new company is a full-contact sport. To illustrate that point, one of our great American philosophers, Mike Tyson once said: “Everyone has a plan, until they get punched in the face.”

In the arena of life, everyone gets hit hard and when it happens (not if it happens) will you be skilled, prepared, willing, and able to successfully defend your business, maintain or enhance your relationships, and make a real difference in the world?  What’s your “Why?” (The reason you do what you do.)

Try this:

  • Take a small dose of humility every morning. Pray, meditate, and plug in to your Creator to know peace in the midst of chaos. Then ask yourself this question: Are your business goals and your life goals congruent; and ultimately are the reasons you fight, compete, and hang on, really sufficient?
  • Insulate yourself from negative influences and the voices of doubt.  Prepare and plan for iterative, incremental failure as part of the “scientific method” (fail often, fail fast) in the success cycle. Failing isn’t fatal until you quit. Your “Why” should be strong enough to help you persevere.
  • Get a coach with business development AND personal development experience to help you map and navigate a path to business AND personal success.
  • Figure out how to give back – commit to becoming a socially conscious entrepreneur BEFORE you experience massive success.
  • Start now. There is no such thing as perfect timing to begin doing the right thing.

Win,

Chris Bell 3rd

Why Settle?

2013-07-10 07.18.27Consistently connecting with energetic small business leaders and entrepreneurs at events and immersing myself in the day-to-day interactions of the staff working at the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship and Howard County Economic Development Authority… is simply awesome!

As an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship, I’m still blessed to have the opportunity to coach and mentor high-energy executives in newly-formed start-ups executives during weekday evening hours and occasionally on weekends. This week I felt like jumping up and down in excitement when a few of the executives I coach and mentor hit some major milestones (but I refrained from doing so after straining my lower lumbar in a heavy workout.)  As awesome as these entrepreneurs are, I’m certain I’ll have another opportunity to celebrate soon, but here’s an example of some wins just for this week:

  • An entrepreneur was just featured in Money Magazine
  • A company launched their business FB page and securing over 4,000 “likes” in their first 24 hours.
  • Another new small business owner secured the investment he needed to take his business to the next level

Work it and Win!

Entrepreneur Coaching & Mentoring

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Howard County Economic Development Authority – Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship

Over the last few months, I’ve consistently said that: “I must have the best part-time job in the country.” As an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship (MCE) I have the privilege of being paid to mentor and coach some of the most talented, energetic, visionary, intelligent people on the planet. With a technology business incubation program, technology council, and other programs all under one roof, the MCE delivers opportunities for literally everyone – innovators, entrepreneurs, established businesses, service providers, and investors.

Last week, I had the privilege of being only one of 3 people asked to participate on a panel to help prepare an 11-year-old Maryland girl to make her business pitch to the 3rd most wealthy man in the US – Warren Buffet. Click here to see a video of the event.

Taking Back 40 Hours Per Month

First and foremost, if you haven’t read “The 4-Hour Work Week” by Tim Ferris… you should pick it up! It’s got some eye-opening recommendations for sales executives and busy business owners with limited resources, big goals, who want more time freedom.

As many have, I picked a chapter in Ferris’ book, then I took a day and detailed every single business and personal activity I did during the day while asking these questions: “Will this activity generate more money AND more freedom; and which of these tasks can be outsourced?” The next steps were painful: five years ago I actually hired and fired 4 different virtual assistant companies in a 3-month period of time because the US-based individuals assigned to me lacked the flexibility, technical skills, and executive communication skills I needed to effectively interact with my high-maintenance prospects and constituents:  C-level executives and business decision-makers in the technology space.

But then, I stumbled upon Dawn Davis. Once I gave Dawn an overview of my business processes, primary objectives, and described my own unique preferences and protocols…  in one week a peaceful confidence and efficiencies I’d never known, cloaked my entire business. Moreover, I was able to pick up an extra 2 hours-a-day/40 hours per month/ 3 months per year of FREEDOM. It’s enabled a personal lifestyle change that allowed me to become more efficient, effective, and happy… generating millions of dollars of new software and services revenue for my employers and clients over the last 5 years. Question: What would you do if you found an extra 3 months per year?

Today, my “Virtual Assistant”, Dawn Davis also serves as my Director of Business Operations AND has brought on a hand-picked staff of extraordinary professionals in her own VA business that are simply top-of-the line. If you want to get your life back while taking your business to the next level… contact me. I’ve got the “hook-up” that could enhance your business 🙂

Win!!!

Christopher Bell, III

Familiarity – Impediment to Progress

Any consultant who has been around long enough has heard this executive statement:  “I’ve done this before been there before, this is what works, and this is the course we’re taking. I didn’t get here because I’m stupid.”  Alternatively, few are well-positioned to challenge this presumption without fear of termination or loss of opportunity.

FAMILIARITY connotes: “I’ve successfully done this before, so of course I know what I’m doing today.” But In business, many of The Roads of Familiarity which were once traveled without incident have become over-used congested routes that are easy to follow because many that share this mindset and are the same road, reassuring one another… but going nowhere fast.

Here’s an option to consider: Go off-road and change the scenery. Follow a fresh trail of activity to uncover creative microcosms of expertise that are evolving in collaboration away from entrenched centers of understanding that have the potential to stoke the furnace of your creativity. Nevertheless, should you choose the path of familiarity… as least slow your roll, drive cautiously, and adapt to conditions such as you find them. It just makes sense.

Win,

Christopher Bell, III

CB3 Featured Success Story

Howard County Economic Development Authority

Most of the entrepreneurs and small business owners we know work extraordinarily hard to transform their business vision into a reality but too few are provided with an opportunity to be recognized.

CB3 is both humbled and proud to be featured in this recent Howard County Economic Development Success story:  http://www.hceda.org/grow-a-business/success-stories/chris-bell-3rd.aspx.

We are grateful to our family, friends, the Howard County Maryland business community, and our global clientele and their customers for their continued confidence, trust, and support.

Thank you!!!!

 

 

Unplug and Change the View

A business associate and I arrived at the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship in Columbia, Maryland this morning with our coffee in-hand feeling a bit sleep deprived, (which isn’t unusual for most entrepreneurs) because we pulled an all-nighter planning, checking, and double-checking the schedule and quality of our client’s project deliverables. We both agreed: “We’re at capacity – It’s time to bring on more people… we’ve got to scale up.” 

A few hours later I dragged myself home and realized that I hadn’t watched or listened to the news in a few days and when I did… I couldn’t relate to the gloom & doom, or the depressing economic forecasts that the talking heads and financial experts were broadcasting as their pronouncements were foreign to where I am today. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not naïve nor am I one of the bourgeoisie. I know some extraordinary people who are going through hell on a day-to-day basis looking for employment. I also know what it’s like to be suddenly laid off from a decent paying job, with 2 kids in college at the same time, and accepting a part-time job to clean toilets and mop floors in a local office building as a janitor very late at night (so I wouldn’t risk the embarrassment of being seen by my friends or neighbors with a mop and a bucket.) But that experience INSPIRED me, humbled me, and shook me out of my complacency and acceptance of the status quo.

So for my nearly-broke, unemployed, desperate compatriots out there who are trying to hold it together for their children and their families who are praying for a break… I’ve been there and hope this may help: Turn off the TV and stop paying attention to the unemployment numbers as they have nothing to do with your destiny. Control your environment, break the cycle of negative communication and start thinking BIG. Have you ever thought about launching your own small biz?  Learn new skills NOW; begin connecting with other entrepreneurs, get out of your comfort zone, build a network of potential clientele, become a student of business, and put yourself in a position to discern and take on business opportunities that may transform your life and elevate your legacy.  The net: you’re not a loser and where you are today has nothing to do with your destination. Moreover, the most important people in your life, you may not even know yet so prepare yourself and…

Persevere,

Chris Bell 3rd

Initiating Collaboration That Matters

Last month, I invited a few of my peers – a highly respected entrepreneur, a sales professional, and a business development expert to my office in Ellicott City, MD to participate in a Business Development Collaborative Initiative (BDCI) I started with IGLOO Software in Ontario, Canada. The purpose: to ascertain whether synergies exist amongst participants that could be leveraged for our mutual benefit.  The result: Two participating executives signed agreements and we’ll be working on driving business together.

Von Wright, MBA

A week later I was in Charlotte, NC invited to share and exchange ideas with several business executives and new MBA and PhD graduates regarding: the nuances of successfully launching and managing their own small businesses; the CB3 “But I Hate Sales™” Seminars being rolled out in September; and framing new initiatives that address the needs of the under-served.  Southern hospitality was at its best in Charlotte as I was a guest in the home of Von Wright, MBA – a highly motivated businessman (who happens to be a former Marine, former US Army Officer, an Airborne qualified logistics expert, and my Pershing Rifles fraternity brother) and his hostess wife whose awesome cooking is responsible for making me put on 5 lbs. 🙂

Lessons learned:  There’s power in transparency in YOUR personal story. While it’s necessary to use wisdom in the management or disclosure of your intellectual property, there’s no substitute for sharing and exchanging great ideas and real-world perspectives with ethical, highly motivated professionals with purpose.  Want to expand your network, be introduced into warm markets, and transform lives while being handsomely compensated? Stop trying to win alone. Take the time to share what you know and commit to “pushing up people” (a phrase made famous by the great Art Williams.)

Win,

Christopher Bell, III

The Cost of Time Traps

Most small business owners, entrepreneurs, and technology sales professionals expect to live pretty hectic, out of balance, and occasionally sleep-deprived lives for more than a few seasons as they transition from predictable industrial-age working hours to the state of “constant-on” where the word is out:  BEING AT WORK IS NO LONGER A PLACE, IT IS A STATE OF MIND.  As a result we don’t watch the clock in a way that most salaried employees do because for us… executing linear, non-revenue generating tasks and activities is an unrecoverable expense and TIME TRAP that doesn’t add equity to the bottom line of our businesses that we can leverage later. Nor does it put additional commissions into the wallets of most sales and business development professionals that’s sufficient to improve their lifestyles.

Here’s a little math that nets out the necessity and justification to avoid ONE TIME TRAP ACTIVITY (and most people have more than one.) Let’s assume you’re a technology sales rep and you earn $100k annually, which means your hourly wage is $48.08. If you spend 3 hours per day talking to unqualified people or doing activities that don’t put you in front of prospects who are ready, willing, and able to buy… it’s costing you $2,884 monthly or $34,617 annually. Over a 3-year period (the average on-the-job tenure of a technology sales rep) that nets out to be a $103,851 top-line, cold-cash loss. The opportunity loss (because you’re not using that TIME to focus on activities most likely to convert to real revenue)… is incalculable. Disturbed yet? I hope so.

Change & Win,
Christopher Bell, III

From the Top: How Did You Do It?

As the founder of the company, over the last day or so, I received a few inquiries and notes of congratulations (and even one warning) about CB3’s transformation from “solopreneurship” but the most common question was: “How did you do it?”

Answer: “I” didn’t do it, and my experience is that few people actually make it on their own.  I’ve had access to a phenomenal supporting cast of extraordinarily talented people and professionals who have patiently and unselfishly poured themselves into my development, and whom I’ve personally won with in business.  Along the way, I’ve become humbled by their generosity, grateful for the opportunities presented, and carried by my faith.  With these assets, it’s easy to be inspired.

Win,

ChrisBell3rd

A Solopreneur Transformation

We’ve been REALLY busy.  Yes, I did say “we.” At CB3 (or for the more formally inclined, ChrisBell3rd & Company LLC) we’ve done more than just a little re-branding in the last 120 days. Here’s what I mean…

We’ve always understood that complimentary synergies exist between our executive clients, our peers in the business development technology arena, and our potential customers.  In response, CB3 has developed four new service offerings for executives of small technology companies and start-ups; Our peers are already talking aboutThe Razor’s Edge” – a digital destination where business development (sales, marketing) subject matter experts will be sharing insights to improve performance; and we’re delighted to be able to educate a community of future buyers and consumers in our upcoming “But I Hate Sales™” Seminars.  But there’s more! We now share office space in the Maryland Center for Entrepreneurship, which makes it immensely easier to do local business.  But MOST IMPORTANTLY,  we’ve evolved from solo-preneurship by adding a small, highly motivated TEAM of talented professionals to help optimize all business interactions (and yes… we remain on the hunt for exceptional talent.)

What’s next?  Subscribe to this page to hear about our upcoming Razor’s Edge featured guests; watch for the posting of the new “But I Hate Sales™ ” schedule; and for the next 30 days, read the daily, public “shout-outs” of gratitude and thanks to individuals or companies who have helped to make our transition possible.

Subscribe to this Conversations page… and don’t miss out!

Win,

Christopher Bell, III

Relaunching with New Products and Services for 2012!


At ChrisBell3rd & Company, LLC (also known as CB3) these are REALLY exciting times! A little more than two years ago, I started the company as a Solopreneur with only $395 after being laid off. The following year I was recognized as a Winner, in a 2010  $25,000 Entrepreneurs Challenge.

Today, in less than three years we’ve been able to expand our services, maintained several long-term partnership agreements, closed multi-million dollar contracts for our clients, moving into shared office space, and have become established as trusted advisors to CEOs and executives across the globe with an exemplary track record for performance. The net: we’re growing as a company, adding great professionals to our team, and we believe it’s a perfect time to TUNE-UP and:

  • Initiate a WEBSITE MAKEOVER
  • REBRAND the company
  • Introduce an impressive NEW BUSINESS VIDEO DESTINATION
  • Present our NEW SERVICES
  • Leverage EXCEPTIONAL RESOURCES
  • SUPPORT others in our COMMUNITY

Come back and visit us soon and keep up with activities related to our business re-launch here to…

Win!!!!!

-Chris Bell III

chris@chrisbell3rd.com

Telephone: 443.718.0977

Smallbizlady Coaching with ChrisBell3rd

It’s a calm, new day and quiet optimism abounds here at ChrisBell3rd. As most of you already know, in May 2010 I was announced as a winner of the “Become Your Own Boss $25,000 Entrepreneur’s Challenge” which was sponsored by Melinda Emerson (aka Smallbizlady.)  Melinda has established a stellar reputation as a small business expert, public speaker, and as the author of an awesome book entitled “Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months: A Month-by-Month Guide to a Business That Works.

One of the conditions of my being a contest winner was a requirement to blog about my experiences working with Smallbizlady.  I knew I’d gain access to her business expertise but I didn’t know that I would also be the beneficiary of her encouragement, empathy, energy, inspiration, tactful correction, generosity, and personal authenticity. I didn’t just get a business coach… I found a friend. Here are some of the things we’ve covered:

The rules: Smallbizlady set the ground rules and preferences for interaction in our upcoming coaching sessions. My challenge: ensuring my client/customer requirements don’t encroach on my pre-scheduled business coaching sessions – we’re working on it.

Financial review: I submitted my company’s quarterly financials, but my business plan and marketing plans were obsolete in 8 months as I had surpassed all my initial Year-1 objectives. Now I needed a makeover. This became a priority for complet ion as Ms. Emerson needed more detail into my company’s core competencies to ascertain paths and opportunities for growth. Truth: I was impressed and… I’m not easily impressed.

Life Plan: every legit business owner understands the necessity to complete a business plan, but Smallbizlady introduced me to the benefit of using a “life plan” as an integrated part of my business plan. Have you ever busted your butt to achieve a goal or objective in life and then find yourself asking: “Is this it?” Never again… I’m workin’ on a life plan.

The new “normal”:  I soon discovered there was nothing crazy or unusual about my life or experiences as a new entrepreneur and that I should look to model the mindset and leverage the experiences of others who’ve been successful in my moments of doubt or in times of extraordinary challenge.

Pray for me and of course… I’ll keep you up to speed as my coaching sessions with Melinda Emerson, the Smallbizlady continue to unfold. By the way, a complete chapter of  Smallbizlady’s book is being featured in 4 pages of Black Enterprise magazine this month. Check it out!

Winning with you,

-Chris Bell III

ChrisBell3rd A Winner in $25,000 Entrepreneur’s Challenge!

In celebration of her first book, Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months: A Month-by-Month Guide to a Business That Works (Adams Media, March 2010), Melinda Emerson is annoucning contest winners featuring a prize of weekly small-business coaching sessions. “The contest brought so many worthy applicants that I found it impossible to choose one winner,” describes Emerson.  “I narrowed it to two winners who agreed to share the one-on-one coaching.” Entrepreneurs Jennifer Furr, owner of PictureThatSound in Raleigh, North Carolina, and Chris Bell, owner of ChrisBell3rd & Company in Columbia, Maryland, will work with Emerson weekly and blog about their experiences.

In 2009, Jennifer Furr decided to leave her steady job in the pharmaceutical industry to pursue a dream – bringing a product to market that she couldn’t find in the retail world.

Furr founded PictureThatSound to fill an unmet need in the US memory-keeping market.  The company’s first product pairs a photo matte with a recordable device for sound.  Furr describes being pregnant with her second child and wanting to capture the ultrasound image with the heartbeat sound in her scrapbook album. “There are so many sounds that we take for granted, that we think we’ll always remember. Sometimes I close my eyes and picture a sound in my head, like my toddler’s giggle, my grandmother singing, or even my husband snoring. We provide a product that allows you to capture a photo and an audio snapshot of that memory, all in one.” Visit www.PictureThatSound.com. In June 2009, Chris Bell decided to use his creative business development and technology sales expertise to launch his consultancy, ChrisBell3rd & Company, LLC to exceed sales revenue objectives on behalf of executives, investors, and owners of small to mid-sized IT software and life sciences software companies. “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to be coached by Smallbizlady, and I am thrilled to have been chosen.  I know she will help me grow my business,” said Bell.

ChrisBell3rd & Company, LLC exercises proven best practices with the latest in Sales 2.0 technology to deliver customized business development and sales approaches that uniquely fit their client’s product-type, corporate culture, and revenue goals. His mantra is simple: “Nobody cares what you know, until they know that you care – all is business is personal.”   Visit http://chrisbell3rd.com

Emerson says, “These two emerging entrepreneurs are exactly the type of dedicated small-business owners that I love to coach.  I was so touched by each of their stories of starting a business.”Jennifer and Chris will receive coaching twice a month for one year and an autographed copy of Melinda Emerson’s book Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months, her life planning journal, and her Audio CD: 10 Things You Must Never Forget in Business. Emerson will also coach both entrepreneurs every other week throughout the year. The winners will be required to blog twice per month about their entrepreneurial journey.

Melinda Emerson “Smallbizlady” is a seasoned entrepreneur, professional speaker, and small business coach. Her areas of expertise include small business start-up, business development and social media marketing. Melinda is a well-known expert in achieving bottom line results and has helped many entrepreneurs to start and grow their businesses.  Melinda hosts #Smallbizchat, a weekly talk show on Twitter for emerging business owners. Melinda publishes a blog about running a profitable small business www.succeedasyourownboss.com.  Her first book Become Your Own Boss in 12 months; A Month-by-Month Guide to Start a Business That Works” was released March 2010 from Adams Media.  For more information, please visit www.becomeyourownbossbook.com

The Law of “Retraction”

Clouds of WarIn T.D. Jakes book,  How to Reposition Yourself he uses the imagery of an archer, bow, and arrow to illustrate the fact that just before the moment of release, an arrow is pulled backward (or should I say “retracted”) and lays at rest as the bowstring is pulled taught and the bow bends under stress and tension. To further paraphrase the words of this prolific author, all of this is necessary to ensure that power and long flight are enabled upon release and that sometimes the life experiences of people are quite similar. I personally call this: The Law of Retraction.

Have you ever talked to, or met with someone you’ve known for years and walked away from the dialogue blown away by their transformation or growth from what you perceived as a point of failure or tough circumstances? How did they seem to move from “zero-to-hero”? One plausible explanation is the “Law of Retraction.”

Quite often, an exceptional achievement is preceded by a circumstance or event that forces one to move backwards and wait in a state of temporary tension and stress as change for the better takes place. For some, this holding period  is a matter of days and yet for others it could be a lifetime. While the posture is uncomfortable for all, the personal pressure of life’s demands, society’s expectations for short-term gain or relief and past recollections of previous success… may seem unbearable for the one who is in a state of retraction. The result? Compromise and the trade-off of a bigger long-term gain for small, temporary relief.

It may be wise for us to get better at discerning our position and to refrain from cursing every situation that may be holding us where we are. Examine your plans and quietly test them in preparation for a well-positioned and powerful release that will take you further, faster, and far beyond what could have ever happened without… The Law of Retraction.

Win,

~Chris

No Heroics, Just Limited Choices

At some point in time, a life event will affect you personally and by default professionally count on it.  However, I see nothing heroic or virtuous about being diagnosed with cancer, recovering from surgery, and working to regain ones physical health. For me the effort was self-centered and I personally had no choice as no-decision would have been a painfully slow terminal decision. Reality check: the extraordinary person was my wife. She was the one who had to work a demanding and stressful full-time job while also attending to my physical care. Is it relates to another event: there’s nothing heroic about pushing thru the unexpected death of a loved one that’s what we’re supposed to do. But watching the people you love grieve thru loss and supporting them thru their grief in some ways is worse than cancer. Surgery can cure a disease but how do you cure a broken heart? It’s a callous cliche but it’s true: Life goes on and people cope in their own way. Last but not least… yes, it kinda sucked to be unexpectedly terminated asan employee less than 90 days after returning to work after recovering from cancer surgery but so what? Millions of Americans can tell a similar story and mine is just one of them.

The unexpected benefit of dealing with major life events which converged in a 6-month period is that it forced the exercise of faith, patience, and planning which also brought clarity to logical next-steps. There’s power in the wake of pain. ChrisBell3rd & Company actually launched as a low risk, high benefit endeavor(what’s to lose?) I played it safe and had one (admittedly awesome client) paying me consistently for a period of months BEFORE substantively investing my time, seeking the advice of a mentor, and leveraging my talents to begin planning for business growth. When small, incremental success becomes evident, and one has the support of a community that’s willing to pay for your services, it provides a glimpse into the future of potential possibilities. Who then, wouldn’t strive to better leverage the situation? The net: there’s nothing heroic about my professional transition though I certainly wish the path had been peronally less painful.

Thanks for the Acknowledgements!

Many thanks for numerous shout-outs and congratulatory thanks from previous customers, old and new friends, business associates (and even a few competitors) in recognition of the inaugural launch of ChrisBell3rd & Company a few days ago. The response to our launch has FAR EXCEEDED our expectations and we look forward to helping small software companies achieve and exceed their software sales revenue goals.

We’ll see you at the top!

– Chris Bell

New Sales Outsourcing Business ChrisBell3rd & Company Launches Overcoming Daunting Challenges

Columbia, Maryland (PRWEB) October 6, 2009 — Christopher Bell III had no idea he would launch a successful small business a year ago. At that time, personal and professional tragedy hit him hard. However, starting a new venture is exactly what Bell has done with the founding of his new company, ChrisBell3rd & Company – which specializes in providing world-class outsourced sales services of IT software and life sciences software on a retainer-plus-commission basis.

According to Bell, his clients are small software companies with big sales revenue objectives who may lack in-house sales resources or the expertise necessary to aggressively prospect, compete, negotiate, and win competitive scenarios within commercial organizations and U.S. federal civilian agencies based in the local Washington, D.C./Maryland/Virginia metropolitan area, or the Mid-Atlantic region of the U.S.

Bell, who has more than 18 years experience as a nationally recognized leading sales revenue producer of IT and life science software, said he utilizes a variety of means to assist and find clients – including the latest marketing tools available.

“Evidence of a paradigm shift in the active use of technology by the sales profession – as in other professions – is everywhere. ChrisBell3rd landed its first client, TeraTech, Inc. in Rockville, Md. via an ad on Craig’s List,” Bell said. “Within 30 days of signing our consulting agreement, we had signed a major deal for TeraTech with a global entertainment communications company. That sales lead was generated by word-of-mouth via Twitter! What’s compelling is that one year ago, I had never even heard of Twitter.”

Despite early success, the company’s founding required unusual resolve to launch, he said.  In late 2008, he was diagnosed with cancer, had surgery and recovered after two months on disability. Forty-five days later, on Christmas Eve, a family member was found deceased of natural causes. The challenges continued just 50 days later, after he was terminated by his employer as part of the economic downturn. The decision, he said, became clear: “become a victim or a victor.” He chose the latter and a vision of opportunity was the result.

“Clearly, the velocity of technological change that is taking place today is exponential and it’s certainly not business as usual for employers with staffs of technology sales professionals,” Bell said. “While small IT software and life science software companies may be able to develop and market superior solutions to that of their larger competitors, a small company’s survival and future success in our marketplace will require different approaches and an enhanced evolving professional skill set to that of traditional sales personnel.”

ChrisBell3rd & Company is on the leading edge to help its clients reduce overhead and increase software sales revenue production. It does this by leveraging outsourced high-touch expertise to personally manage complex strategic sales processes while concurrently using virtual communications and social media tools to more cost effectively prospect, qualify, and dialogue with prospective customers in a manner that is more congruent with prospective customer’s evolving communications preferences and capabilities, said Bell.

“Today and in the future, ChrisBell3rd is well-poised to replicate its early success with other like-minded investors, business owners, and sales executives as we look forward to collaboratively adding software sales revenue to their bottom-line,” Bell said.

For more information, contact:

Christopher Bell, III
443-539-8252