Wed | May 27, 2020

A refreshing look at personal development and success

Published:Sunday | April 5, 2020 | 12:22 AM

At the outset, author Ivy Slater shares the existential crisis that spurred her to change careers.

Slater’s psychosocial experience after the passing of her father and the stagnation she experienced at her printing business proved exhaustively transformative.

As she battled life’s vicissitudes, Slater mulled over changing professions. It is a period that well captures the weight of decision-making amid incertitude. It is at the juncture that she paints a harrowing picture of her personal and business challenges.

She writes, “One evening as I was pushing through a set of lunges … I burst into tears.” Clearly dissatisfied with her station in life, she questioned, “Who am I, and what am I going to do?”

Little did she know that darker clouds were brewing. She pens, “What I could not plan for was the unexpected closing of my husband’s 20-year business, the collapse of the financial market in 2008, losing our Upper East Side apartment, and amassing over seven figures in debt.”

It is amid these predictive circumstances that Slater positioned herself as a business coach, a promising move that yielded many a dividend.

Crux of strategy

Creating, nurturing, and maintaining long-lasting relationships form the crux of Slater’s business strategy.

“If you’ve done the work to maintain your relationships, your first five clients will come from trusted referrals. Your first consulting gig will come from your last job,” she writes. She cautions, though, that “many people get derailed by creating marketing, websites, and social media for nobody but themselves”. She advises, “When you get those first two to five clients to create a consistent cash flow, then you can create marketing systems that will create a continual pipeline of clients.”

Throughout, Slater likens business to her past as a dancer and makes several analogies between the two: “Like every good dancer, you run the risk of suffering injuries, stumbling through a misstep, or throwing your partner out of rhythm. But when you are committed to showing up at the barre every day, everything is possible.”

Slater’s every counsel is incontrovertibly relevant and practical. Moreover, she relates how she managed to transform her clients’ vision and personal lives.

She clearly articulates the prerequisite to success: “When you are stretching into something new, building up your inner confidence is essential.”

She later writes, “Great leaders are visionaries who are willing to stretch into what’s possible … . I helped my first client see that she could stretch beyond seeing herself as just a teacher and stretch into being an educational leader … . When you are willing to stretch beyond what you know, everything is possible.” She adds, “Part of uncovering who you are is having great teachers around you who will push you beyond the barre and on to the dance floor,” conceding, “I was fortunate to have three great business coaches in my first few years that guided me into seeing my full capabilities.”

Reinforcing the lesson

Relatedly, Slater reinforces this lesson with the following: “Being pushed further along by mentors, coaches and advisers whom you trust is often the way that you begin to meet your goals and milestones.”

Slater’s work brims with pragmatic and effective teachings. Worthy of mention are the following:

“Two strategies that you can use to move beyond your limitations are meditation and brainstorming.”

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– “Knowing the numbers in your industry will be key to knowing how much to charge for your product or service, discovering where to market to your potential clients, and creating a strategic plan for your company’s growth.”

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– “When you are stuck, it almost doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you do something … . When you take an action, you will gain insight on what you can do next.”

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– “It’s not that women are not as good … . It’s just that until you learn how to state and believe in your value, you are not ready to step into your spotlight or own it.”

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– “The longer you put off a difficult conversation, the more difficult the entire situation becomes. By projecting what you want from the conversation, you are able to effectively deliver your message.”

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– “Great partnerships are achieved when each partner’s strengths and abilities complement each other.”

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– “Knowing your numbers is about standing as a leader in your company and understanding how all your finances work together in your business.”

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– “One of the benefits of a daily gratitude practise is that it helps you to acknowledge what’s working, what you’re grateful for, and what you are celebrating.”

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– “The most important point to remember in expanding any undertaking is that you never stop training.”

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Authentically penned, preceptive, and anecdotally rich with a touch of savoir vivre, Slater’s work serves as a pedagogical tool in the throes of transformational change. In this respect, From the Barre to the Boardroom transcends business and serves as an ideal template for conflict resolution, success, and personal happiness.

From the Barre to the Boardroom

Copyright (c) 2019 by Slater Success Coaching

ISBN: 978-0-578-44648-6

Available on Amazon

Ratings: Highly recommended

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