Make them Feel Awesome with Tiny Noticeable Touches

Make them Feel Awesome with Tiny Noticeable Touches

Great customer service starts from the ground up. I’ve partnered with TELUS, a company obsessed with improving customer service every day, to share stories of companies across Canada that are showing us how we can all expect more. To learn more about TELUS and how they are putting customers first, check out www.telus.com/expectmore

Customer Service Excellence starts with Tiny Noticeable Touches

TNT goes a long way when it comes to remembering a brand or an experience. How a client, guest or customer is left feeling is remembered and shared. The simple smile, whether in person or over the phone. A genuine acknowledgement of a customer when they enter your establishment and sincere thank you when they are leaving whether they have purchased anything during that visit or not goes a long way.

Looking for opportunities to go above an beyond is a sure way to create a loyal customer.

A few of my favorite T.N.T. experiences that stick out in my mind span from a weekend get-away, product deliveries, restaurants and travel.

TNT Tip #1: It all starts with first impressions

Our first night at Rowena's Inn... a little piece of Heaven.

Our first night at Rowena's Inn… a little piece of Heaven.

Rowena's Inn in Harrison Mills, BC. Arriving at the majestic landscape of the Sandpiper Golf Course on the Harrison River was a special treat in itself. As we settled into our private cottage, we discover a lovely written note from the Inn owner, along with

a bottle of local wine as an added treat. I recall thinking what a lovely space, wood fireplace, a grand king size bed, board games, and a huge soaker tub (AND, how great a cup of coffee or glass of vino would be). Sure enough they thought of everything. The tiny noticeable touches made a lasting impression and an extra special experience we have shared over and over (and over again – including this post!)

And of course, because I had such an epic experience at Sandpiper Golf Course too… had to include this little video… BIRD-EH!

Yup, this just happened! Birdie! #TourismHarrisonMills

Posted by Dai Manuel on Tuesday, September 29, 2015

 

Not to long ago, I was chatting with a friend who was telling us about a restaurant she recommended. She was mentioning how the food and drinks were really good, but it was the customer care that blew her away. The tasters at the door were a great touch while they waited for their table and once seated I guess their meal was taking a little longer than expected and the server felt bad that the couple would be rushed to get tickets for the comedy show they were planning to attend that night. Secretly the manager at JOEY Restaurants secured two tickets for the event and informed them to enjoy the rest of their JOEY experience stress free. No added cost to the restaurant or my friend, but an above and beyond gesture that has benefited beyond that nights dinner.

Question: Have you ever had a parcel delivered to your place? How about a box that was crafted from an old church, containing inside a personally-made, artificial hand holding a local beer bottle, along with a fake eye, snake blood, and tickets to a haunted house adventure? Okay maybe a NOT SO tiny touch, but definitely noticeable. With a number of invites to attend certain events, launches, product reviews, etc., the Fearmongers grabbed our attention and ensured a spot in our calendar for making the unique effort to go above and beyond the typical email or card invite.

Fearmongers definitely got our attention when we received this on our doorstep.

Fearmongers definitely got our attention when we received this on our doorstep.

Another unexpected favorite was our family's first trip to Disney Land. We were typical guests at the California Grand, yet felt like absolute royalty. From the special evening events they host to the character visits during the buffet breakfast. One night we received a phone call to our room and it was an invite to enter Disney Land one hour early to view the return of NEO. Michael Jackson's NEO was opening the next day and guests of the California Grande were being offered an exclusive pre-show entry. Entering the infamous park before the public is unreal! Walking down the middle of the downtown Disney boulevard, with no one else around, seeing the rides fast asleep before awaking for their first runs of the day, and the amazing calmness in a enviroment that is normally full of hustle and bustle… we will never forget that experience.

Another fine example of how a simple gesture for a couple regular guests was received extremely well! (and do you think I share this story with a lot of people? I sure do!)

TNT Tip #2: Being aware of the impact customer care has on a brand is a must

The Walmart greeter seemed strange at first, but I didn't realize how much I appreciated the simple smile and hello when I walked in the store until it went missing.

The West Jet partners seem like real people, having common sense conversations versus the robotic scripts of some of their competitors. I truly appreciate being heard and having agents take the time to work through my concerns, questions and requests.

When I set up my new cellphone with TELUS, I learned the agent on the other end has recently become a dad, he walked me through my plan and ensured the coverage met my needs. He was real and even followed up a week later to make sure all was going well and see if I had any other questions.

Another example is the service manager at Brian Jessel BMW – he walked me through my entire invoice and even went the extra mile and emailed me a few weeks post-service call to ensure my vehicle was doing okay. Wow moments!

TNT Tip #3: Communication and getting clear on expectations is key!

Taking pride in your service shows. Communicating and getting clear on outcomes and expectations is next level of TNT service.

For example our floors were redone in our home. The company replacing the carpet with hardwood arrived on time and were done as scheduled — Awesome! Upon arrival home all looked good (from afar). As we went to create dinner, we noticed our entire kitchen was covered in a sheet of sawdust, which led to us discover our entire home had a layer of dust… the walls, baseboards, counters, couch…absolute yuck and pain in the butt!

It would have been nice had the contractor communicated to remove all items from the counter, cover our furniture or warn us we will need to spend a lot of our time cleaning up our space post install. Our exciting return home to our upgraded living space was tarnished and left a sour taste in our mouth to ever refer or use Gerry's team again. (Note, I refrained from mentioning the brand in this post? Missed opportunity!)

jeff bezos customer service quote

In closing, any company or professional that puts emphasis on the TNT of communication, customer service, and client empathy, is already going above and beyond the industry ‘norm'.

My advice to any companies out there that aren't taking a genuine interest in their customers, their concerns and feedback – you're boat is sinking! And what starts as a trickle in today's hyper-connected economy, can quickly become a surging leak you'll never plug. So, either learn to swim or create a humanized strategy to deal with the leaks that happened (and proactively create a plan to deal with the ones that have yet to occur… because it's not a matter of ‘if' but a matter of ‘when').

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you are awesome - reallyThis post is sponsored by TELUS. The opinions are my own…

And to be absolutely clear, this is my disclaimer: “Just so you know, I have been compensated to share my ideas on this topic. Sometimes it is in the form of products, or services or even money… But here’s the thing; I won’t  share anything with you that I don’t fully support. It doesn't matter what it is, or how much they are willing to give me, if I don’t believe in it, It won’t be on my site. Seriously. You’ll just have to trust me on this.” ~ Moose

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The Home of the Future Looks Friendly Thanks to TELUS

The Home of the Future Looks Friendly Thanks to TELUS

Manuels at the Telus Future Home

Our family loves the future that TELUS is painting

Can you imagine a kitchen that helps you plan meals? Shows you how to cook? Scans your food choices and orders foods from your grocer based on your family's health goals? These questions may seem like scenes imagined from the Jetsons, but they're nearly a reality with help from companies like TELUS.

Recently my family and I experienced the TELUS Future Home in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. We felt like we had just stepped outside of Doc Brown's DeLorean into a scene of a not too distant future. Our tour from start to finish was dream-like, from the first step through the Smart home entry through to the office of the future, we were sold! It ain't 1985 any more!   

The Top 3 Highlights from the TELUS Future Home

For those that know me, three of my four pillars from the Whole Life Fitness Manifesto include Family, Fitness/Food, and Finances. I found myself experiencing TELUS' home of the future through these filters, wondering how families can benefit from these incredible technological advances and why we ought to be really excited. Here's a few things that jumped out at me…

The Smart Home Entry TELUS

The home of the future will let you know when your kids are home safe

#1. The Smart Entry and your family's safety

If you are a parent like me, you probably have found yourself frustrated by your preteen's lack of attention to detail.

Those moments in life where you've told them over and over the importance of letting you know when they have returned home from a day at school, a weekend get-together with friends or simply heading out to play at the park. But of course, kids will be kids, and they forget how stressed out we can be as parents. But not anymore…

Imagine an entrance to your home which uses any or all the following technologies: bio-metrics, retina scanning and finger print scanning. Your child returns home and the house sends you a text or video message letting you know they've returned home safe and sound. Awesome, right?

And what about those UPS deliveries that you always just seem to miss?

Now your Smart Home entryway will tell you via an app or text that you missed a delivery, but give you the option to re-book a follow-up delivery at a time that you decide. Freaking cool!

#2. The Smart Kitchen and your family's health

Smart kitchen hydroponics

How about a garden built into your smart kitchen?

Back in 1962, when the Jetsons first aired, the show painted an epic picture of futuristic kitchens. Gone by the wayside were TV dinners and no more scrambling to make meals, instead you could simply speak your order out loud to the computer and ‘poof', your meal appeared cooked to perfection.

Now the Smart Kitchen of our future might not be as automatic as the Jetsons, but it isn't that far off. There were 3 distinct features I absolutely love and can't wait to get in my kitchen some day in the not-so-distant future.

The Interactive Meal Planner

Most of the people I connect with daily want to eat healthier but aren't sure of how to do it or where to start. The kitchen of the future will guide you and your family's food decisions based on your health and wellness goals.

The connectivity that TELUS fiber optic (high speeds of 150Mb per second) will allow instant access to a database of recipes. Based on your family's dietary preferences, taking into account any and all food allergies or sensitivities, the interactive meal planner will customize your meal plans to suit.

Take this one step further, and the meal planner will compile the list of needed foods and place the order with your grocer, requesting a delivery on a day and time that you choose. Crazy right? Not really… it's coming. And just think, you won't be as tempted to throw those bags of chips and cookies into the cart if you aren't required to go and do the shopping.

Interactive Meal planner Telus Smart Kitchen

The interactive meal planner of the future kitchen will take all guess-work out of eating healthy

Let's be honest, we all would love the ability to work with a nutritionist and get the help to create a food plan that would optimize our health on so many levels. However, if you had to drive weekly to meet them, how likely would you be to use their services? Exactly. Now you can connect with them in your home, sharing with them the data from your past meals.

And to make this Smart Kitchen smarter, your meal preparation information will be sent to your Smart Stove….

The Smart stove

The stoves of the future will not only connect to the internet to give you instructional videos and recipes, but will also control the temperature based on the meals you're preparing. whether you a Master Chef or a meal prep novice, the stove will help you every step of the way.

I remember in my early 20's I was very much a creature of habit. I cooked the same thing all the time – chicken, broccoli and rice… oh my! Many of us fall into this pattern based on finding comfort in doing what we know. The stove of the future will break down that fear factor associated with trying new things, and will help with making the process fun, healthy and bottom-line, easy.

Just think. The interactive meal planner already helped you plan this week's meal, has ordered the necessary foods from your local grocer and knowing the recipe's cooking instructions, the stove already knows that the roast you are cooking will need varied heat and will automatically make the adjustments for you on the fly.

Sign me up! That's my kind of cooking.

The Nutritional Scanner

A counter-top nutritional scanner will be the coolest toy in the kitchen. Imagine placing any food or drink item on the scanner and instantly having access to the nutritional information as well receive recipes that use those products. In addition, as a dad, one of the best uses of the scanner is having my kids better understand the nutritional values of the foods they’re eating.

t’s now much easier to track your health and nutritional information

The Smart Kitchen nutritional scanner takes the guess-work out of eating healthy.

This tool will make it easier to track your health and nutritional information allowing you to stay on track with your goals. If you want to, the information collected by your smart kitchen can share this info with your nutritionist or healthcare provider if you’re having health issues (can tie into a nutritional plan for you). And most importantly, the WIIFM, the Smart Kitchen helps you make healthier choices with healthier foods.

#3. The Smart Home Office and your family's quality of life

With high-speed fiber connections coming to homes, very high-definition video conferencing becomes a reality.

This provides huge implications for working at home, but also for health.

Imagine the time you'll save when you can video conference directly with your doctor. No more wasted time traveling, waiting in the waiting room, and if you're sick, you're off to another specialist… from your own home you can connect with all your team of health providers, including your nutritionist, dietitian and even your personal trainer.

So, do you feel the future is looking friendly?

The Smart office in future home telus

The Smart Office will mean more time for family

An entryway that notifies you when your kids are home, a kitchen that helps you nourish your family with the best meal options and an office space that allows connects you with the world… just a few of many features yet to come in the coming years. With companies like TELUS leading the charge, my family is feeling both excited and optimistic for what the future holds.

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3 Tips for Setting Your Family Up For Optimal Health

3 Tips for Setting Your Family Up For Optimal Health

Junk Food Compass

Navigating a family's way across the sea of “health advice” is easier said than done.

Today’s family life is more fast-paced and over-scheduled than ever.

As a result, general family health and nutrition often takes a backseat. When you’re racing from one event to another while juggling meetings, homework, deadlines, and all the unexpected challenges that pop up – health is far down on the list.

That is, until someone gets sick. Schedules halt and the realization that all-around family health has not been a priority rears its head. It's time to take action before illness sends life into upheaval, by creating habits and priorities that encourage and stimulate good health for the family.

To help you and those closest to you, here's…

Health Simplified: 3 Tips to Set Your Family Up for Health “Awesomeness”

Tip #1 – Drink MORE Water

As bizarrely simple as it may sound, water is very beneficial. What can water do for you and your family?

Drink More Water - 660x330

4 Simple Benefits to Water and why it’s essential for your family:

  1. Water regulates your bowels and prevents constipation. Consuming water with fiber will keep your system functioning correctly. It also keeps your body fluids in check, including saliva production, nutrient transport, body temperature stabilization, digestion and circulation. Low H20 consumption interferes with these functions.
  2. Calorie control is achieved by drinking water before a meal as it makes you feel fuller and reduces your chances of overeating. Try replacing sugar, salt and calorie-filled drinks with water during a meal and eat foods full of water such as watermelon, which offers up high fiber and water!
  3. Muscle strength is increased as water carries much-needed oxygen to the muscles. This helps delay muscle fatigue and allows you to use those muscles longer – resulting in an increase in stamina.
  4. Skin and hair are hydrated by water from the inside than out. Moisturizing is still important to the outer skin, but water helps hydrate and plump dry skin and dry skin lines.

How do you keep track of your water intake?

One suggestion is to hand out two water bottles, at least, per day to each family member and urge that everyone drinks them dry. Another option is requiring your family members to drink water at mealtime before any other beverage. It is also a good idea to throw a few water bottles in the trunk of your car – not just for emergencies, but for any time someone may be thirsty.

Tip #2 – Go Green

In this case, we’re not talking about recycling (although you should certainly be practicing environmentally friendly policies as a family!) Instead, going green means upping your vegetable intake to at least one serving per meal.

  • Try adding green peppers to your eggs or a breakfast burritos wrap stuffed with veggies.
  • Lunch can be a salad or sandwich with spinach leaves instead of iceberg lettuce.
  • Dinner is easier – add peppers or spinach to a pizza, or zucchini to lasagna, or a throw on a delicious side of asparagus. Before serving the main meal, place raw vegetables with a low-calorie dip on the table or baked zucchini with rosemary and parmesan. You can even get creative – try serving up chili in a hollowed out green pepper for the greatest edible bowl. Artichokes, green beans, peas, zucchini, spinach, broccoli, mixed green salad – there are so many easy combinations that will punch up your meals nutritionally and in terms of the taste.

However you do it, get those greens in.

Tip 2 - Go Green - lots of salads

The essential nutrients in these vegetables have so many incredible vitamins and antioxidants, as well as fiber. The health benefits are well worth any extra effort as vitamin A, C, D, and K, as well as fiber and antioxidants, are all found in high amounts in most green vegetables. This helps achieve fullness, proper nutrition, and bowel regulation – three very important things for health improvement.

smartypants_logoFit Hack: Utilizing the convenience of a high quality multi-vitamin, complete with omega-3 & 6 fish oils, vitamin-D, B12 and added fiber is a sure way to increase your baseline nutrition. To do this, our whole family leverages SmartyPants multivitamins at meal time. #TheGoodGummy #SmartyPants

Tip #3 – Make a Plan

As tiresome as it can sometimes be, especially with the breakneck pace most families keep, planning meals is ultimately a rewarding choice. A bit of effort once a week or even once a month, can take the stress out of meal planning during your busiest weeks. It also makes it easier to whip up something healthy, helping you avoid last-minute trips to costly and unhealthy fast food restaurants.

Make a Plan - tip 3Look for meal options that can be put in a slow cooker (stews, roasts, chili, etc.) for a hands off approach to getting dinner on the table, or try meals that can be made ahead and frozen (vegetable/beef lasagna, healthy casseroles, etc.) to take the rush out of meals on the busiest of days.

There are plenty of ways to take the burden of meal preparation off of just one person.

One day a week, choose one family member to plan the meal and make it. This gets them involved and excited about a meal together.

Another option to keeping away monotony is a ‘try something new’ night. Introduce new recipes or ethnic meals to broaden your taste buds and keep dinner fun and new.

You can also require everyone to have a hand in the meal – peeling carrots, chopping potatoes, browning meat, making sauces, etc. It promotes family bonding and everyone does their part to make it all come together.

Health Simplified: Now go forth and be AWESOME!

These three tips can not only get your family on track to good health, but make nutritional awareness a part of everyday life.

By practicing these strategies, you’ll instill better eating habits for all, boost essential nutrient intake and keep everyone’s body function at an ideal level. With a little effort, your family’s health can improve, plus you’ll see a boost in energy and positivity while strengthening the bond between you. You already put a great amount of effort into your job, family activities and your local community – now is the time to bring that effort home.

Health SimplifiedI'm very excited to announce my partnership with #SmartyPants the creators of #TheGoodGummy. The science speaks for itself — SmartyPants produces the only all-in-one multi that also has omega 3s and vitamin D. In the Complete + Fiber formula, they've ALSO added soluble fiber to the mix.

I had the opportunity to connect with their team at the Dad 2.0 Summit in San Francisco earlier this year and they absolutely wowed me. The company's vision for family health, giving back to local and global communities and the belief that everyone deserves good health was enough to put me over the edge… sign me up! How can I help?

Over the coming month, I've teamed up with SmartyPants to offer some fantastic info on the following:

Stay tuned and enjoy Health Simplified!


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you are awesome - reallyThis is my disclaimer, “Just so you know, I have been compensated to share my ideas on this topic. Sometimes it is in the form of products, or services or even money… But here’s the thing; I won’t  share anything with you that I don’t fully support. It doesn't matter what it is, or how much they are willing to give me, if I don’t believe in it, It won’t be on my site. Seriously. You’ll just have to trust me on this.” ~ Moose

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Cited Sources:

3 Tips to Develop Your Lifestyle Brand

3 Tips to Develop Your Lifestyle Brand

When I connected with Graham and his partners last week, I was immediately impressed. A solid team of positive, like-minded people chasing a common passion. Graham went on to share with me how their company got started and where they are heading… Lucky for us, I asked Graham to share a few tips he's learned along the way developing the Artists and Athletes brand… enjoy the read!

Be it a service you are looking to offer in the form of personal training to providing a product rich in heart-healthy antioxidants, my message revolves around passion and resiliency. At times it feels very clichéd to preach following your passions and staying resilient in the face of adversity, but that doesn't means it’s any less true. These are two terms tossed around fairly loosely, and more often than not, taking a step back to better understand the root of your passions and drive will greatly benefit you in the long run. These steps ultimately led me to starting Artists & Athletes Clothing Co., a brand focused on catering to the more athletically inclined. Some of what led me here may seem obvious, but sometimes the most obvious things hide in plain sight.

ayes - the group

3 Tips to Develop Your Lifestyle Brand

1. Find Your Passion, then Chase it!

Artists and Athletes Clothing CoWhen developing a lifestyle brand, you are telling the world that the lifestyle you are cultivating is one worth emulating in one form or another. That’s a beautifully bold statement, and one that will be greatly affected by the level of passion you have towards this lifestyle. For me, I fumbled and stumbled my way into this realization. I found myself with an opportunity in mid-2011 to follow a dream of mine and become a small business owner in the promotional marketing industry. I thought I had made it! I was my boss, running the show, and following what I thought was my passion; being my boss.

Maybe it was naïvety, maybe I was just overly excited at the new-found freedom of running my business, but I came to realize over the following two years that I had no genuine passion for that particular industry, and it was holding me back. I was still very happy to be running my business, but the need to focus on my passions (beyond simply being a business owner) became clearer by the day. This ultimately led me back to what I understand and like the most, athletics (former collegiate swimmer) and clothes.

2. Stay Agile While Developing Your Brand's Strategy

ayes kickstarterStrategies will come in any number of forms. Finding the method that feels most comfortable to you in expressing your vision is a great way to define your strategy. My strategy came from learning to sew. If I could learn to sew and tailor my own clothes, then I could create a blueprint for moving forward. A merger of my passions for a fit and health lifestyle, and clothes tailored to accommodate said lifestyle. So that’s exactly what I did!

Going from the sewing machine, to having samples produced by a manufacturer, to ultimately launching the brand with a Kickstarter Campaign has taken a lot of work, with plenty of kinks along the way. And that is where agility within your strategy comes to the forefront. That blueprint you developed that is rooted in your passion will allow you to stay focused on your goals when challenges arise.

3. Stay True to YOUR Passion

This all ties back in with the first point of focusing and finding your passion. Once you have found the way to express your vision, always remind yourself of what led you to that point. Remember, you are chasing your passion, your goals. People will find out about what you’re doing and often want to share their two cents (sometimes more fervently than others), and that’s okay. Stay true to yourself and your vision, make adjustments when necessary, and continue down your path and you will achieve great things.

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graham baily bio head shotAuthor Bio:

Graham is a designer and entrepreneur based in Los Angeles, CA. With a desire to create high-quality clothes for the athletic body type, he founded Artists & Athletes Clothing Co. in early 2014 to help merge his passions; artistry through design and athletics.

Graham can be found on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

You had me at coffee… a health fanatic’s love story with a mug of black awesomeness

You had me at coffee… a health fanatic’s love story with a mug of black awesomeness

life begins after coffee #KraftmeacoffeeHi everyone. My name is Dai and I'm a caf-fiend. My ritual de lo habitual is coffee.

My day starts with one (or three) and at times, winds down with one too (decaf of course). It's a relationship of give and give… I give coffee my undying love and it gives me a warm coat of awesomeness. OK, maybe not to that extreme, but pretty close.

Daily, I find my mind percolates with grandiose thoughts of espresso and Americanos. Some would think this a distraction, but to the contrary, it fuels me.

I know, I know. It's weird to have a self-diagnosed, health fanatic admitting to a 4 or 5 mug-a-day habit. But! I'm not going to hide my love anymore…

I know that I'll get some slack for my love story with coffee, but to defend myself, here's a list, provided by Authority Nutrition, of the top 13 reasons why you should get in on the coffee love-fest.

The Top 13 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Coffee

  1. Coffee can improve energy levels and make you smarter
  2. Coffee can help you burn fat
  3. The Caffeine in coffee can drastically improve physical performance
  4. Coffee is loaded with essential nutrients
  5. Coffee may lower your risk of type II diabetes
  6. Coffee may protect you from Alzheimer's Disease and dementia
  7. Caffeine may lower the risk of Parkinson's disease
  8. Coffee appears to have protective effects on the liver
  9. Coffee can fight depression and make you happier
  10. Coffee Drinkers have a lower risk of some types of cancer
  11. Coffee does not cause heart disease and may lower the risk of stroke
  12. Coffee may help you live longer
  13. Coffee is the biggest source of antioxidants in the Western Diet

all you need is love and more coffee #KraftmeacoffeeAnd if there was a #14, it would be that coffee drinkers are generally just more “awesomer”. (this is not based on science)

So obviously when invited to co-host the #KraftMeACoffee Twitter party on October 16th, my answer was a resounding…

You had me at “Coffee”

Kraft Canada has launched their NEW line of Keurig Compatible Pods, so now you can enjoy a perfect cup of your favorite coffee every time. The Keurig Compatible Pods are available in Kraft’s top coffee brands including Maxwell House, Gevalia, and Nabob…the perfect fit for your morning.

Grab a cup of black awesomeness and join me, @Listen2Lena, @FeistyFrugal and @Kidsumers along with @KraftCanada for a Twitter party of epic proportion. We'll all be hopped-up on our favorite cup of joe and ready to tweet, tweet, tweet about our love affair with coffee aka black awesomeness.

Say it loud, and say it proud, “My name is ______ , and I'm a CAF-FIEND! Hoorah!”

Join me for the #KraftMeACoffee Twitter party

(which promises to be the most highly caffeinated Twitter party ever seen by the likes of Twitter!)**

**Disclaimer, I might have been on my 5th cup of coffee when I wrote that statement…. but to know you better RSVP below.

 #KraftMeACoffee Twitter Party invite and information

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The Number One Life Law To Live By When Starting A Health Food Business

The Number One Life Law To Live By When Starting A Health Food Business

Route 6 Protein Bar logoI will be blunt.  I am “starting a health food business” rather prematurely.  In January 2014, I developed The Route 6 Protein Bar, a food with a #FixFood mission.  When I started receiving unprompted, rave reviews about my product from friends and co-workers, requests for individual orders and verbal agreements from health food store and gym owners to carry my product “once I was ready to go,” I decided to jump right in.

I mean who doesn't want to make a delicious almond butter fudge flavored protein bar that's raw and organic happen? Am I right?

Start-up Business 101: Self-starting and Self-funding

Self-starting (and self-funding), I started creating a buzz, fulfilling small individual orders (for friends!) and creating a demand before the supply.

My business-to-be thrived off of my passion in this “dubbed by a hashtag” #FixFood mission.  I think a lot of you reading this have probably done your part in the #FixFood mission to some extent.

Have you purchased organic food recently? Then you're doing your part in the #FixFood mission.

Have you banned processed food from your diet (at least for the most part, we can't be perfect right)? Then you're doing your part in the #FixFood mission.

Have you shared a #FixFood or #CleanEating image on social media? Then you're doing your part in the #FixFood mission.

Route 6 Protein BarsMy main impetus to fix food comes from knowing not only the physical benefits clean eating has on the body, but its mental benefits.  Who else felt a little crazy when toxins, chemicals and sugar were partying in their body? I know I did.

Living a Vision and a Mission

I grew up with an unhealthy relationship with food and I know for a fact that all that processed “nutrition” did a lot of harm to my already susceptible mind.  Eating clean was the tangible step I could take in a longer more spiritual journey.

So wonderful! My business has a mission, and I believe in it with all my heart.  I know I've got to do it.

But man, guys, starting a health food business is complicated stuff!  A lot is required.

There are the FDA guidelines to labeling, barcode buying, packaging, co-packing, health food inspections, commercial kitchen space, websites, sourcing, wholesale prices, tax ID numbers, allergen warning statements, deciding on a business structure, etc. etc. etc.

route 6 protein bar nomnomThere's a lot that goes into it before you can truly start, and honestly, that's fine.  But what I started realizing was that I couldn't fund this myself, not even on a small-scale as I had hoped.

What do you do when self-funding is not an option?

So I started to wonder…

Is this the right time to start my business?

How am I ever going to raise the money?

Will my business even really make a difference?

And like it loves to do, wondering turns to doubt and doubt turns to fear.

It's only natural.

Any great start up will tell you about a time when they wondered, doubted, and feared.  Little do we know, sometimes those wonderings, doubts and fears happened just yesterday!  (Even the most successful entrepreneurs will admit it. The truth will surprise you.)

The Grestest Advice I ever got starting my own business

And that's when my greatest advice comes in.  It's a quote that I found by Elizabeth Gilbert:

“You have to participate relentlessly in the manifestations of your blessings.”

And during these pre-Route 6 Protein Bar days when I can't truly jump in to my business the way I think I'd like, I take it to mean that I must take any chance that I AM given and live it out as fully as possible.  I don't have the funds yet to see this business through, but if I'm presented with opportunity, my policy is: participate relentlessly.

So if Dai Manuel says I can talk about The Route 6 Protein Bar on The Moose is Loose, I say YES!

You can help me with the click of a button

Luckily, The Route 6 Protein Bar has become a finalist in Martha Stewart's American Made Contest, and I'll tell ya, I am doing everything I can to participate relentlessly and get as many votes as possible.  Then more doors will open and I can continue to participate even more and more relentlessly.

Want to help? The business with the most votes receives start-up capital, so I'd love it if you would.  Click the button below to vote.

 

Vote Route 6

Why participate relentlessly?

participate relentlessly #MooseisLoose

Because I know that in business as in anything else, we each have a mission that's greater than us.

We entrepreneurs, we movers and shakers, we creators and makers (including all of you reading right now)  are merely the vehicles in making missions happen.  So if I'm wondering, or doubting or fearing, I remember it's not about me.  It's about what a protein bar I created can do for the #FixFood mission and ultimately, people.  So I put emotion aside and simply take action.  I simply participate.

Bottom line: when it comes to anything in life, hold onto this quote.

Training for a triathlon? Participate relentlessly.

Working with client today who look to you to for guidance with her fitness goals? Participate relentlessly.

Getting up to face the day? Don't just live through it: Participate relentlessly.

How will you participate today?

Katelyn Collins, Creator of The Route 6 Protein Bar

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katelyn collins bio picAuthor Bio:

Katelyn Collins is the creator of The Route 6 Protein Bar, a bar committed to doing its part in the #FixFood mission by providing the general public with a product that supports optimal health. In its quest to swapping out “broken food” for “fixed food,” Route 6 will always be unprocessed, unrefined, and will consist only of raw, organic ingredients.

Stay in touch with Katelyn and Route 6 here: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and their website.

Also be sure to vote for Katelyn's Route6 at Martha Stewart's “American Made” Contest

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