Saturday, March 17, 2018

Women's Leadership Conference and Business Expo

Soledad Tanner Consulting was present at the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Women’s Leadership Conference & Business Expo at the Hilton Americas - Houston! We offer business consulting and financial management services to businesses, professionals and corporations interested in maximizing their profit and productivity. Worker smarter, not harder! Contact us for a free discovery call! 

More than 700 leaders were inspired by Dr. Laura Murillo-President & CEO HHCC passion and leadership and had the first Latina Governor in the U.S. serve as keynote speaker. The honorable Susana Martinez, Governor of New Mexico. Nelly Quijano, Franchise Owner’s McDonalds, Mary Jo Rapini, M.Ed. LPC, Brian Hall, Manager Supplier Diversity & Outreach Small Business Officer, Shell and many other incredible speakers.

Video here:

Pictures here:

Created with flickr slideshow.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Women’s Leadership Conference & Business Expo - 2018

Stop by and visit Soledad Tanner Consulting expo table at the 2018 Women’s Leadership Conference & Business Expo organized by the Houston Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. We will be at the Hilton Americas- Houston, this Thursday March 15th from 8 am – 2 pm. It will be great talk to you and share tips that will guide you to increase the profit and productivity of your company.

Did you know that Women-owned businesses in the Houston Metropolitan area generate over $40 billion in annual revenue year over year and that they account for more than 30% of all businesses in the Houston area?

Monday, March 5, 2018

Hard Work is Not Enough

Photo by Li Yang on Unsplash


There is more to success than working damn hard…everyday.

by : Thomas Oppong

There is more to success than working damn hard…everyday.

It is often said hard work is the only one way to succeed. Well, turns out you need more than just hard work.

Hard work isn’t enough to succeed in today’s world.

By all means, get it done, and become obsessed with your goal. Work hard at it, but you have to do more than working hard to succeed.

That doesn’t mean hard work has no practical value.

Working hard significantly raises your chances of success but you can’t rely soley in putting in the hours.

Hard work is important to success, but it’s dangerous to see it as the most important thing.

There has to be more to success than merely working hard, or millions of people around the world would be a lot more successful than they are!

Take a minute to think about the people you think are successful.

Now take a minute to think about people who are not so successful.

Nearly everyone at the top is hard working, but most people at the bottom are hard working too.

So, hard work is a requirement to be well off but hard work itself does not mean you will succeed.

Hard work is necessary to achieve a goal, but it is not a defining factor.

Tim Hererra writes in The New York Times, “The people at the top of any given field didn’t get there just by working hard. Yes, hard work is necessary, but just as important is being smart about the work you’re doing, and focusing on doing the things that will help you improve.”

Hard work sometimes pays off, but smart thinking combined with smart work will always pay off in the long run even if you stumble in the short term.

Working hard does not necessarily means you are being productive.

In Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business, Charles Duhigg explains what it means to be productive:

“Productivity, put simply, is the name we give our attempts to figure out the best uses of our energy, intellect, and time as we try to seize the most meaningful rewards with the least wasted effort. It’s a process of learning how to succeed with less stress and struggle..”

Input vs. output

Of course, most worthwhile goals require hard work.

Sometimes they take days, weeks, even years of consistent effort.

Malcolm Gladwell argues in his book, Outliers that to become an expert, you need to put in roughly 10,000 hours (that’s three hours a day for ten years).

Success isn’t just about how long or how hard you work – it’s about what you work at. And why you keep working at it.

Is your effort moving the needle?

Success is absolutely about what you focus on and ensuring you use your time productively.

Millions of people have become too preoccupied with “the grind,” and it’s actually burning them out.

In a creative pursuit, you can work as hard as you can and still not get as far as someone who works different and on the right things at the right time.

Long hours don’t equal hard work. They just equal long hours.

What’s the story you keep telling yourself about working hard?

The time you put in has nothing to do with how hard something is.

Scott Young says hard isn’t enough to succeed in todays world.

He writes, “When working towards a goal, everyone takes a look at their inputs and then examines their results. Most people have learned to view the major input as effort. In other words, if I want to become a millionaire, I’ll need a certain amount of effort to achieve it.”

Scott argues that hard work is being replaced by three other factors that will be far more important in the future: creativity, relationships and learning.

“Effort should take a backseat to the amount of creativity, relationships or learning we require. So if you want to become a millionaire, you’ll need a certain amount of creativity, connections or understanding to get there,” says Scott.

Dont’ just work hard in isolation. Build relationships. Questions your routines, choices, and your actions. There is always a better approach to the same destination.

Constantly ask yourself, “Would this matter to anyone else but me?” If the answer to that question is yes, then ask yourself, “Is it worth my time or expense to add it or change it?”

Don’t aim for perfection. The real world rewards those who ship and get stuff done.

Focus on deep work instead of working hard on shallow work

There are endless number of things you can do to achieve a goal.

Deep work advances your goals while shallow work it is what you do to avoid real work. Shallow work rarely gets you closer to your goals.

Go for the most important tasks – the ones that cause the highest impact.

Many of us confuse being “busy” with being effective, or efficient.

If you start your day by answering emails. You could get sucked into answering questions, replying to every email, and advancing the cause of other people’s actions.

Being efficient at the wrong pursuit is not the same as being effective at the right tasks. The two are not the same.

Someone who works hard or smart and is well organised but spends all their time on unimportant tasks may be efficient but not effective.

Time is finite, and there are only so many hours in the business day. So the trick to working smarter is simple: Work more efficiently.

To be effective, you need to be able to separate important tasks from urgent ones and focus on getting important activities done when you are most active.

Managing your time isn’t about squeezing as many tasks into your day as possible. It’s about simplifying how you work, doing things better and faster, and knowing when to take a break and refresh.

Don’t get caught up in reactive mode.

“Most of us have no problem with being busy, but we’re often busy on the wrong things,” says Angie Morgan, co-author of Spark: How to Lead Yourself and Others to Greater Success. “You could spend nine to five just emailing, but that’s not driving results or moving you toward longer, bigger goals. When people say, ‘I’m so busy,’ it really means, ‘I’m a poor planner,’ or, ‘I don’t know how to prioritize or delegate,” Angie argues.

If you know how motivation works, you will know it comes in bursts and waves.

It’s not possible to maintain a 100% full motivated state every single second. Hence, you need to create/leverage on your environment to maintain your flow.

Use the 80/20 rule to your advantage.

The rule says that 20% of the causes gives 80% of the effects. So always spend your attention on the top 20% things which give the most returns.

Take the 80/20 route.

There are always many different ways to achieve the same outcome.

80/20 route refers to the route that takes the least effort but gives you the maximum results. What’s the most effective route that will get you from where you are to where you want to be? Take that path.

Measure results to improve work efficiency!

Review your routines regularly.

Do a regular review of what you have done in the past week and the corresponding results.

Then analyze the things that are working and the things that aren’t working. With the former, keep them; with the latter, remove them.

Very soon you will have a very streamlined list of things that work.

Burnout is real.

It stresses you out, costs you money, and damages your health.

Being truly effective (and not just working hard) is the result of strategic thinking, focus, and carefully applied mental or physical muscle.

Make time in your schedule to relax daily, weekly, and monthly.

Don’t let your hard work stand in the way of your success.

The work you purposely choose to do should make your work life stronger and better–not just busier and stressful.

Before you go…

If you enjoyed this post, you will love Postanly Weekly (my free digest of the best productivity, psychology, and neuroscience posts). Subscribe and get a free copy of my new book, “The Power of One Percent Better: Small Gains, Maximum Results”. Join over 38,000 people on a mission to build a better life.

Originally published at

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Looking to increase profits? 1- Hour complimentary consultation

Xavier, tax season is here! Are you rushing to organize your invoices and expenses for your Accountant? Did you reach the profit level you wish for? Do you want to do better this year? WE CAN HELP!

We offer customized FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS that fit your business needs and budget.

Don’t worry if you are not a number person. We specialize in maximizing profit and productivity. Call us for a complimentary consultation at 832-998-2136

Soledad Tanner Consulting, LLC ©
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Recomended reading: 4 Things You Should Do to Prepare Your Small Business for 2018

With the end of yet another great year it’s time to prep ourselves for the next. Small business owners take this time to evaluate their accomplishments and set the course for what’s ahead.

Continue reading this article >>
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Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Re-balancing life and living purposefully!

Re-balancing life and living purposefully! Soledad Tanner Consulting Founder will share her story. 

“After 26 years of a successful Global Finance Corporate career where, I traveled the world, lived in various countries, received my Masters in International Business, reached and exceeded all my professional goals. Despite all of this success, I realized my health had suffered and needed to re-balance and make changes” 

Monday, February 26, 2018

New CEOs need fortitude, curiosity and savvy to succeed

Written by: Karen Talley

Quite a few CEOs are just stepping in to their positions, or in their first year or so, and while degrees and business experience are valuable, they don’t give the full picture of what’s needed—and not—to run a company.

Dealing with personnel and organizational issues, as well as stakeholders, customers and products are just a few of the hurdles many will face. It’s a time of trial by fire that demands a deft touch, inquisitiveness, patience and fortitude. 

Fortunately, many experienced CEOs are willing to give advice.

“The first, and best piece of advice I can pass on to a new CEO is the one most people already know but can easily lose sight of in the onslaught of day-to-day tasks: It’s all about your people,” said Todd Piett, CEO of Rave Mobile Safety. “The only way you can scale yourself and your organization is by encouraging an atmosphere of respect and trust, where across all levels of the organization people are empowered to make decisions, be comfortable making mistakes and willing to challenge the status quo.”
Consistency counts

Also, be consistent. “A great mentor told me not to try and be someone you aren’t,” Piett said. “While we all have areas to improve upon, don’t put on an artificial mantel just because you took on a new title. It’s not sustainable and others will see the inconsistencies in your behavior, frustrating themselves as they try to guess your intent.”

To be successful, a new CEOs should focus on identifying and building collaboration within their organizations and across other industries that impact their customer base, said Tracy Duberman, CEO of The Leadership Development Group. This will require the following, she said:
  • Envisioning the future. New CEOs must have a clear vision of the direction their organization is heading and what it hopes to achieve.
  • Aligning stakeholders. As organizations bring stakeholders from other sectors into the conversation, new CEOs must allow these stakeholders to build on their original vision and incorporate their inputs and interests to develop a shared solution.
  • Managing boundaries and obstacles. Along the way toward developing collaborative solutions, the partnership will likely be faced with some bumps along the road. To overcome these obstacles, it’s important that new CEOs focus on opportunity, and remind themselves why the partnership was developed in the first place.
  • Act and learn. It is critical to be open to giving and receiving feedback in the interest of evolving that vision to the benefit of all parties. 

As a new CEO, “if you want to become a better leader, the one skill to improve above all others is communication,” said Art Coombs, CEO of KomBea Corp. “The ability to enthusiastically convey an idea, direction and vision to others is critical. And this critical skill is the one skill that truly separates ho-hum management from motivating leadership.”

It is imperative that a new CEO hold strengths in both strategy formulation and execution said Howard Seidel, senior partner at Essex Partners.

A cohesive unit

Development of the executive team into a cohesive unit is essential and CEOs' need to have or develop strong political instincts, Seidel said. “They need to effectively manage their relationships among board members and understand the sometimes unspoken commitments that exist inside an organizational culture. New CEO’s needs to understand how much board and team support they have for certain initiatives.”

In terms of personal traits, “new CEOs are best served combining confidence with some humility and curiosity,” Seidel said. “Projecting confidence is important but that is not mutually exclusive from a new CEO acknowledging that he or she doesn’t know everything, and benefiting from the point of view of older employees in the organization.”

But, “seeking input doesn’t absolve CEOs from understanding that they are ultimately responsible for final decisions,” Seidel said. “New CEOs often can relate to the adage that ‘it’s lonely at the top.’ Similarly, because not all executive decisions will be applauded by everyone in an organization, new CEOs need to have a thick skin, or have the capacity to develop it quickly.”

The unexpected

“You can prepare best by expecting the unexpected,” said Tom Axbey, CEO of CloudHealth. “What you think you know doesn't matter; the question is: have you done your due diligence, and do you have a 100-day plan? The brochure is always different from the resort. Be prepared to listen. To do that, you have to invest from day one in the people.”

Kelley Knutson, president of Netspend, advises new CEOs to use their initial period of time as an outsider to observe, listen and learn how an organization operates and ask a lot of questions beginning with “why” or “what.”

This relates to “sales practices, customer engagement, product development/delivery, operational processes and the competitive landscape,” Knutson said. “Use the things you have two of (eyes and ears) often, and only use your mouth after you’ve objectively understood the situation at hand and can add real value.” 

At the same time, “Ask the right questions, at the right time, to extract real insight and show people you’re listening and care about what they’ve said and what they know about their business,” Knutson said. “This is critically important when leading a group of seasoned, and experienced, leaders who will know the details of the business better than you.”

Openness matters

To do the best job, “be open, engaging, passionate, supportive, humble, inquisitive, and make the journey rewarding for everyone,” Knutson said. “That’s what true leadership is about.”

When Kathleen Savio, CEO of Zurich North America, took the CEO spot, “the first thing I did was focus on my strengths—the contributions I can make to the job. Authentic leadership is where it all begins. For me, I’m inspired by the power of words and use them as a tool to inspire others. My favorite quote is an African proverb: If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.

“That’s the real purpose of a CEO-–to bring everyone together, united in action, with a common purpose. So, I gathered our leaders together to listen to their insights and to emphasize we are o CEOs can get so occupied with running the business that they don’t spend time directly with their customers. I’m making time with our customers a priority for me. In my first 100 days, I’m on the road meeting with customers and listen to their needs. In the end, it’s all about being there for our customers.”

Stay healthy

“As a new CEO, you will quickly notice that operating in a high-stress environment can take its toll physically, mentally and emotionally,” said Lowinn Kibbey, ‎global head, Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute. “This can carry over from the office to all areas of life. While you may be fully equipped to take on a new leadership role, you may not realize just how important it is to stay healthy and resilient, and to continue to develop and improve your character.”

“As you establish yourself in your new role, don’t lose sight of your purpose,” Kibbey said. “Continue to ask yourself: What are you chasing? Why are you chasing it? Who are you becoming as you’re chasing it? Ensuring your decisions align with your character and values can significantly impact your work and quality of life.”

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

10 pasos para construirte tu propia marca personal

Los expertos de Spain Startup-South Summit han elaborado un decálogo para guiar la construcción y difusión de la marca personal de los emprendedores y su influencia en el éxito de su startup.

A partir del contacto con la diversidad de emprendedores nacionales e internacionales que participan en la Startup Competition y se reúnen en cada edición de South Summit, la cita más importante del ecosistema emprendedor del Sur de Europa, los expertos de Spain Startup-South Summit han elaborado un decálogo para guiar la construcción y difusión de la marca personal de los emprendedores y su influencia en el éxito de su startup.

1. Descubrir los propios valores: "¿Quién eres? ¿Qué ofreces? ¿Qué aportación realizas al mercado? ¿Qué te hace diferente? Estas son las primeras cuestiones que debe plantearse un emprendedor para construir su propia marca personal y así definir los valores que lo hacen relevante y diferente del resto. Es importante hacer una lista con los puntos fuertes y débiles: atributos que el propio emprendedor ha de identificar como suyos, sin caer en el error de proyectar en sí mismo valores ideales con los que realmente no se identifica", explican.

"¿Cuáles son los atributos personales más demandados? Creatividad, carisma, eficacia, especialización, adaptabilidad, ética, polivalencia o rapidez. ¿Todos valen para crear la marca personal? Depende de la situación, la tipología del proyecto y, por supuesto, las propias capacidades personales", continúan.

2. Búsqueda de contactos: "De nada sirve ser muy relevante profesionalmente si nadie te conoce. El networking es, por lo tanto, un factor clave para generar visibilidad y desarrollar la marca personal. ¿Cómo generar estos vínculos relacionales? Es fundamental retomar contactos anteriores, organizar eventos propios y asistir a ferias, congresos o seminarios del sector, donde ‘dejarse ver’ y al mismo tiempo conocer a los profesionales más relevantes de ese ámbito. Ser prescriptor de otros que forman parte de tu red de contactos, realizando algunos favores o apoyando a alguien de manera altruista, siempre puede ser una ventaja para fortalecer y crear nuevos vínculos", argumentan.

3. La actitud: "La perseverancia es una cualidad fundamental de cualquier emprendedor para sacar adelante su proyecto. En este caso, juega un papel fundamental la gestión del fracaso y qué consideración tiene en la sociedad. Muchos emprendedores han fracasado antes de triunfar, como Juan Urdiales, cofundador y CEO de Jobandtalent, quien tras fundar su primera empresa junto con dos compañeros de facultad, decidió salirse del proyecto. Tiempo después co-fundó la plataforma de búsqueda de empleo, que ya ha obtenido importantes rondas de financiación por inversores internacionales", añaden.

4. Experto en una determinada materia: "Como emprendedor en un ámbito profesional concreto hay que compartir los conocimientos sobre el sector para posicionarse como un experto y fortalecer su reputación y prestigio profesional. Ofrecer contenido e información de calidad será fundamental para lograr ser un experto. Una forma de demostrar ser un auténtico gurú consiste, en muchas ocasiones, en saber dominar un lenguaje apto para todos los potenciales receptores, ser claro, conciso y concreto, no abusar de tecnicismos y utilizar un vocabulario siempre positivo", siguen.

"Para llegar hasta ahí, siempre suele haber un largo camino. Allan Grant, speaker del próximo South Summit, lleva siendo un apasionado del desarrollo de software desde que diseñó con siete años su primer juego. Entre los 13 y 18, dedicó 10.000 horas a codificar juegos online con miles de jugadores. Ya en la universidad, fundó una empresa de desarrollo web y no paró hasta convertirla en una compañía rentable con más de 50 empleados. Ahora Allan está volcado en Hired, un mercado en Internet en el que las empresas más importantes pueden competir por hacerse con el mejor talento técnico (ingenieros de software, diseñadores, científicos de datos y gestores de productos)", comentan.

5. Mezcla de canales: "¿Dónde ofrecer este contenido? ¿Cómo crear valor? Para que un emprendedor forje su marca personal hay que ser activo en cualquier canal. Por tanto, la mezcla de offline y online es la sinergia perfecta", anotan.

"Internet es una herramienta accesible, útil y que no exige muchos recursos a nivel económico. Pero sí esfuerzo, constancia y una importante dedicación. Además, no todo vale; hay que adaptar cada mensaje. Cada espacio tiene sus propias características: vocabulario, tono o público objetivo. Y prestar especial cuidado al contenido que colgamos online; cualquier mensaje o comentario inapropiado se paga caro en el mundo digital. Otro de los errores de muchos emprendedores es considerar Internet como un mero escaparate y olvidar la interacción con el resto de usuarios. La Red es sinónimo de conversación y a golpe de clic podemos acceder a consumidores, inversores, posibles socios estratégicos u otros emprendedores", indican.

"El canal offline es también una de las mejores formas de construir la imagen personal. El emprendedor no puedo olvidar ‘salir a la calle’ y establecer relaciones cara a cara o participar en los medios de comunicación como un experto en su sector", concluyen.

6. Dejar huella: "Que el fundador de una empresa sea reconocido y tenga un fuerte impacto en la sociedad, hasta llegar a convertirse incluso en un icono, siempre es una importante ventaja. ¿Qué requisitos son necesarios para lograr dejar esa huella? Por un lado, ser fiel a los propios valores y, al mismo tiempo, tener claros la misión, visión y objetivos a perseguir. En definitiva, mantener un rumbo firme y defender lo que se cree. Este doble perfil es lo que permitió, en gran parte, el éxito de Steve Jobs", comentan.

7. Coherencia, autenticidad, naturalidad y transparencia: "Son principios básicos para la creación de una marca personal sólida y sincera. Para contar con una buena reputación es imprescindible saber transmitir credibilidad, coherencia, seguridad y construir un discurso transparente, que genere confianza. La naturalidad y adaptación del mensaje a nuestras formas y maneras son también premisas fundamentales", dicen. 

8. Construcción del storytelling personal: "¿Qué historia hay detrás de un emprendedor? ¿Cuál es su trayectoria profesional? ¿Cómo darla a conocer? ¿Cómo crear un discurso verosímil y que capte la atención? El personal branding no es improvisación, es estrategia, por lo que es aconsejable el asesoramiento profesional para descubrir la historia, desarrollarla y comunicarla. “Se trata de construir una historia auténtica, con valor, diferente y que genere interés”, asegura Álex Barrera experto de Press 42 en storytelling y. Por lo tanto, el storytelling personal es una obligación para los emprendedores si quieren despertar la atención, seguridad y notoriedad de su proyecto, sobre todo en las fases iniciales", plantean.

9. Tiempo y recursos: "El personal branding se crea y moldea poco a poco y ha de ser afrontado como una inversión a largo plazo y que requiere paciencia. Para evitar malgastar tiempo y dinero, hay que conocerse bien a sí mismo, no vender ‘humo’ y saber identificar qué tiene realmente cabida en la creación del storytelling personal. La medición del impacto generado permitirá ver cómo evoluciona la marca personal, la aceptación que tiene y plantear posibles mejoras", ponen sobre la mesa.

10. La marca personal sobrevive a la profesional: "Que una startup deje de existir significa el fin de una marca profesional, pero la personal sobrevive, porque va unida al emprendedor más que al proyecto. Invertir en personal branding es hacerlo también en visibilidad para futuros proyectos", concluyen.