Monday, March 28, 2011

Get Connected — Make It Happen!

Effective tips on networking to help every entrepreneur to build their business

Many business owners have asked me how I became such an effective networker. My response: “The secret to your success is in your daily routine.” Everyone has the same 24 hours in the day; the better question to ask is “how do you use those hours?” When I first began to get out and meet new people, all I had was a simple, one-sided business card.

1. Business Card
I use a one-sided business card because it is simple and to the point. Name, business, phone and email address with the second side left blank. Many people I met with didn’t have business cards, so I used the “two card process.” As I handed my card out, there was a second card underneath so they could write down their contact information and hand it back to me. Every entrepreneur should carry business cards and they should be ready to hand them out at every networking event or opportunity.

2. Attitude
When you are in a networking environment, it’s very important to have a positive attitude. After all, you are there to generate business. People around you will remember the way you speak and present yourself. Remember the three-foot distance rule. You want to be in their space but not in their face. Smile and be courteous. Be ready with a mini explanation of what you do. Stephen Covey says, “Begin with end in mind,” in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. You are there to meet and connect and collect business cards with the result of generating business.

3. Key Questions
Many people I speak with always have a challenge initiating conversation. This is easy to overcome. We actually do it every day when we talk about the weather, the sports or the news. In the networking environment, it’s done with the specific intent to learn more about the person you are speaking with. Debra Fine in The Power of Meeting New People talks about being prepared with ice-breaker questions. For example, you could say, “Good afternoon. My name is Terry Grant. I’m from Resolutions Inc. How are you doing?” This can be improved upon with, “Great to meet you, Steve. My name is Terry Grant. What got you started in this industry?” Or “Tell me about how you…” Or “What do you see as the coming trends in your industry?” And if you are just starting out, it never hurts to ask something like, “What kind of advice would you give someone starting out in this business?” These types of questions will definitely get more conversation flowing and may lead to a powerful conversation. Entrepreneurs are seeking ways to voice their passions, talents and experiences to show everyone that it can be done. Networking is and always will be the best way to learn and participate. Put yourself in the arena and learn your hobby or interest, and let it grow by building successful relationships with people who may become friends, associates and, perhaps, lifetime mentors.

JIM PAGIAMTZIS is the owner and founder of Payamgis Enterprises. He works with consultants, entrepreneurs and corporate professionals on effective communication. He will teach you how to get to the next level in your business, through prospecting, effective presentation skills, and customer service. Jim has written articles for and has been quoted by and Happy He can be reached at 416-894-7859 or, or visit his website at

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Spotlight: Courtney Carroll

In the past few years have heard many entrepreneurs speaking on various financial programs. When I heard Courtney Carroll speaking at an Empowerment event it become very clear he understood financial planning. He has ability to share insights that make it clear to understand and easy to apply.

1st There are many books written on financial strategies, why do we still have an issue with millions of people doing so poorly in this area.

I believe we have been sold the wrong message by our governments and the media at large. People are being encouraged to live their lives for a pension rather than creating their lives by design. The majority of books on finance speak to the importance of paying yourself first and putting your money away in mutual funds for the long term. The habit of savings is indeed important and is one of the chapters in my upcoming book (Financial Fitness Blueprint) but to think that mutual funds will give you the security at the end of your retirement is a fallacy. Canadians need to understand that profits are better than wages. It is better to work 7-10 years developing your business rather than 30-40 years working for a pension. Until this concept is understood and embraced we will continue to see millions struggle financially around the globe.

2nd What insights or suggestions can you share for those looking to change their financial destiny?

To create a better financial picture for our future we must begin with the end in mind. We need to know what it is we want and then work backwards from there. In the educational field we call this backward planning. Here is an example of how to do it. Let’s say your goal is to create $10 000 dollars a month in passive cashflow. Establish how long you think it will take you to do so and which vehicle you will need to drive to get you to that goal. In this situation it could be the business of public speaking, a MLM business that has a residual income stream or my favorite real estate.

If my goal is to create $10 000 in passive cashflow in five years then I can begin my plan. Ten thousand dollars (my financial goal), divided by 5 (the number of years) equals $2000.00. Jim this means each year for 5 consecutive years I will need to buy real estate that returns $2000.00 a month in order to reach my goal.

The next step is to figure which markets to best leverage my money and how many homes I would need to purchase each year to get $2000.00 of cashflow. If each house averages $500.00 a month in cashflow then I would need to purchase four income properties each year. Therefore to get $10,000 dollars of passive income in 5 years I will need to purchase 20 homes.

Jim the formula for creating wealth is very simple. Those who know it and work it consistently will always reap the bounty of life’s rewards that are available to all who truly desire it. My book outlines the key steps or Financial Fitness Blueprint needed to successfully navigate the field of personal finance.

Courtney Carroll currently works as a Principal with the Toronto District School Board. As a successful administrator with the board of education he is passionate about empowering young adults to aim high and create their lives by design. Courtney has spoken to thousands of youth during his career about overcoming obstacles and the power of positive associations.

Courtney Carroll is a successful real estate investor who has worked in the field of finance for the past 6 years. His passion for finance was born from witnessing his family’s mismanagement of money and the bankruptcies that followed. He has taken the pain and embarrassment from his past to create a powerful message that helps others avoid the financial mistakes his family made. He is a regular speaker at ToastMasters International and has delivered keynotes and workshops on the topic of financial fitness to organizations in the GTA.

Courtney Carroll is currently in the process of completing his first book entitled “Financial Fitness Blueprint” to be published later this year. His speaking topics are on Financial Fitness, Life’s Lessons from the Field, 3 Keys for Success.

Courtney Carroll can be reached at or by phone at 416-347-0864
You can also visit his blog at

Jim Pagiamtzis is a published author, writer and entrepreneur who has written for the Toronto Public Library spoken at Universities, Enterprise Toronto, Initiative TO on How to be come a networking Success and How to attract Mentor in Business Life and Success. You can be email if you interested in being featured in future spotlight articles or have him come and speaking to sales or marketing organizations

Friday, March 11, 2011

Success Principles

On February 19th I had the absolute pleasure of delivering a keynote presentation on Financial Fitness for a church group in Toronto. It was a magical day and I was fortunate to have a few of my close friends share the stage with me that afternoon. What made this experience magical was seeing the many teenagers in attendance, eager to learn success principles for moving their lives to the next level.

Plan to succeed

Joining me that afternoon was my good friend Phil Taylor, author and founder of Goal Achievers International who delivered his motivational keynote entitled “I Believe in you”. Phil was followed by another good friend of mine Mr. Jim Pagiamtzis, who spoke to the audience about the power of networking….”Get Connected – Make Wealth Happen”.

For those who know me and have read my previous post, you understand that I am passionate about education and equipping our youth for success in all areas of their lives. Although my presentation was about financial fitness, I also embedded the importance of personal development and goal setting in my talk. I believe it is important to give back and this opportunity allowed me to do just that as I was able to share some of my successes and especially my failures in the area of finance, so that my failures will serve as a warning to others of how not to live their lives.

One of the major themes discussed during that seminar was wealth creation and retirement planning. Many people fail to make accurate plans for their future and are content with living from day to day. They have become conditioned to following the lead of the masses and will settle for what life gives them rather than demanding what it is they want from life. After a time this habit becomes so deeply ingrained that it is almost impossible for many to change course. Warren Buffet said it best “habits are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken’. What habits have you formed? Are they moving you in the right direct towards success or limiting your progress and pushing away the very thing you desire?

Financial Fitness can only be achieved if you have laid out concrete plans for its attainment. If you fail to put a plan in place, tailored specifically for you, how can you expect to succeed? Praying and hoping that things will work out is not planning, this is a philosophy for disaster that will leave you broke and embarrassed at the age of 65. It is true that many successful people believe in the power of prayer, but they also understand that true success cannot be achieve without immediate and consistent action in the direction of that which one desires.

So, what can you do to ensure your life becomes and example for others instead of a warning when it comes to your financial fitness? First you need to become crystal clear about what it is you want to achieve financially. Second, you need to have a strong enough why (what is your reason for wanting wealth) that will help you weather the storms and obstacles that will come your way. Third, you must be willing to take immediate and consistent action toward the attainment of your chief aim. The last point and one I believe to be critical to your success, is you need to seek the assistance of a mentor to help accelerate your progress.

About 6 years ago I became crystal clear that I wanted to achieve financial freedom and become a real estate investor. I had a very strong WHY (reason) for wanting to achieve these goals, the first was to be able to provide more for my family and the second was to support charities that were aligned with my personal values. I didn’t know how this would be accomplished but that was not my concern and not within my control. What was in my control was the ability to start immediately by moving toward my chief desires. So I began reading the books, attending seminars and found myself meeting others who were also on a quest for financial freedom through real estate investing.

Then the magic happened, I attended a seminar in Toronto at the Thornhill Wealth Forum and found my mentor. Within days I was taking her coaching and reshaping my personal philosophy about money and wealth creation. Paola Breda of Canadian Financial Freedom literally transformed my life and taught me how to see opportunities where others saw obstacles. She empowered me through her teachings and established accountability partners to keep me honest and on track. She held my hands when it was needed and kicked my butt when I procrastinated.

Freedom comes when cash-flows

Results……Priceless, within six months of taking her coaching I purchased my first investment property, then a second, then a third and so on and so on. It wasn’t always easy but easy is not an option if you truly want to achieve success. Listen you don’t have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.

Yes if you plan to erase the seeds of doubt that are holding you back from achieving financial fitness you will have to change course. You will need to have a crystal clear picture of what you want your financial life to look like. Your WHY must be strong enough to draw strength from that inner reservoir and allow you to surmount any and all obstacles and see opportunities where others don’t. You will need to take immediate action and apply faith and perseverance until you achieve your goal. Above all, find a mentor that has done what it is you are looking to do. A good mentor will help you avoid some of the pitfalls that are inevitably on your journey to success.

The world is full of untold riches and those who know how to create wealth will continue to apply the principles that will continue to fatten their purse. If you wish to avoid a lean purse I would suggest you take immediate action and start charting a course that will allow you to live your life by design not by default.

With gratitude,

Courtney Carroll

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Spotlight: Christopher van der Hoff

Living the lifestyle of meeting great people wherever I go has connected me with some insanely great people(couldn't resist). Christopher va der hoff is that unique individual who can engage you in a great conversation but share ideas that canincrease you understand how the sales is an import area in your life no matter what you do.

1. How did you become an insanely great speaker?

I started early and did a tremendous of speaking with Junior Achievement locally and nationally. I made presentations, MC’d and keynoted. I was also President of and Chaired the Canadian National Junior Achievement Conference. All this is while being a high school student.

At thirty years of age and for three years I worked the Dale Carnegie Training organization. I help teach their course in Effective Speaking and Human Relations as well as conducted fifty workshops for them.

About ten years ago I became very heavily involved with Toastmaster International. With Toastmasters, I was asked to present a keynote, entitled "How To Deliver Magnificent, Powerful, High Impact Presentations", over forty times.

With Rotary International, Christopher was asked to present his keynote, entitled "Crazy ‘Magnificent Sales Ideas’® That Work ", over twenty times.

So it’s practice, practice, practice, practice,

2. Can you give us a quick tip to give insanely great customer service?

Cavitt Robert many years ago said it best the customer does not care how much you know about your product or service until they know how much you care about solving their problem

Christopher van der Hoff

Professional Sales Speaker, Trainer and Consultant

Click here for a six minute video where Christopher is interviewed by Phil Taylor, CEO of GoalAchievers International

Jim Pagiamtzis is a published author, writer and entrepreneur who has written for the Toronto Public Library spoken at Universities, Enterprise Toronto, Initiative TO on How to be come a networking Success and How to attract Mentor in Business Life and Success. You can be email if you interested in being featured in future spotlight articles or have him come and speaking to sales or marketing organizations

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Spotlight: Patrick Bizindavyi

Living the Get Connected Make it Happen lifestyle have had the opportunity to meet successful entrepreneurs in various fields. Patrick Bizindavyi falls under the category of extraordinary entrepreneur

1. you played basketball for 15years what lesson did you learn that you applied in your entrepreneurial career?

My basketball years taught me that it is not over until the game is over. I also learned the value of self discipline and team work

2. There is saying 'it’s about the journey not the destination", in your blog you mention you have interesting journey. Who have you met lately that made on impact for you?

On my journey, I have met amazing people such as James Arthur Ray and Bob Proctor. They all have made an big impact on my life. However, even though I have never met him, Michael Jordan has made a huge impact on me by his determination and will to win no matter what. I learned a lot just by watching him play the game he loves.

Writer, coach and speaker, Patrick Bizindavyi was born in Burundi. While working as an English Professor in his native country, he attracted national attention by becoming the youngest basketball coach to win 15 trophies in 7 years. Bizindavyi went on to become a journalist. Host on radio Bonesha FM, his trademark show “Mercredi Tempo” had the highest rating from 1999 to 2002. After moving to Toronto in 2002, Bizindavyi has become one of the most recognized figures in the Francophone community: as a host on radio 105.4 CHOQ FM, the only francophone radio in the GTA, and also as Master of Ceremony for events during Black History - francophone version. For the last three years, Bizindavyi has been involved as a speaker in the United Way campaign in Toronto. His blog “Journeyman Stories” is due to be published in book form in the coming year.

Jim Pagiamtzis is a published author, writer and entrepreneur who has written for the Toronto Public Library spoken at Universities, Enterprise Toronto, Initiative TO on How to be come a networking Success and How to attract Mentor in Business Life and Success. You can be email if you interested in being featured in future spotlight articles or have him come and speaking to sales or marketing organizations

Friday, March 4, 2011

Structure Actions Around Your Core Genius

Written by Jack Canfield | Thursday, 03 March 2011 00:00

When I talk to people who have a hard time achieving goals, one of the most common excuses I hear is “but I don’t have enough time.” If you can’t find extra time to invest in the pursuit of your goals, it’s time to reprioritize your responsibilities.

Successful people know that to achieve their goals and greater levels of accomplishment, they must structure their lives to maximize time spent on their core genius. Your core genius is the one thing that you love to do because it’s effortless and a whole lot of fun. And if you could make money doing it, you’d make it your lifetime’s work.

In most cases, your core genius is directly tied to your passions and life purpose. My core genius lies in the area of teaching, training, coaching and motivating. Another core genius is writing and compiling books. Along with my co-author Mark Victor Hansen, I have written, co-authored, compiled, and edited more than 100 books.

Successful people make their core genius a priority, delegating everything else to the rest of their team. Compare that to other people who go through life doing everything, even the tasks they’re bad at or that could be done more cheaply, better, and faster by someone else. They can’t find the time to focus on their core genius because they fail to delegate even the most menial duties.

When you delegate the grunt work (the things you hate doing or those tasks that are so painful, you end up putting them off), you get to concentrate on what you love to do. You make faster progress on your goals, and you get to enjoy life more.

So why is delegating routine tasks and unwanted projects so difficult for most people?

Surprisingly, most people are afraid of looking wasteful or being judged as being above everyone else. They are afraid to give up control or reluctant to spend the money to pay for help. Deep down, most people simply don't want to let go.

Others simply have fallen into the habit of doing everything themselves. "It's too time consuming to explain it to someone," they say. "I can do it more quickly and better myself anyway."

Delegate Completely

One of the strategies I use and teach is complete delegation. This means that you delegate a task once and completely, rather than delegating it each time it needs to be done.

When my niece came to stay with us one year while she attended the local community college, we completely delegated the responsibility of grocery shopping to her. We told her she could have unlimited use of our van if she would buy the groceries every week. We provided her with a list of staples that we always wanted in the house (eggs, butter, milk, ketchup, and so on), and her job was to check every week and replace anything that was running low.

In addition, my wife planned meals and let her know which items she wanted for the main courses (fish, chicken, broccoli, avocados, etc). The task was delegated once and saved us hundreds of hours that year that were instead devoted to writing, exercise, family time, and recreation.

Where Do You Spend Your Time?

Most entrepreneurs spend less than 30% of their time focusing on their core genius. In fact, by the time they've launched a business, it often seems entrepreneurs are doing everything but the one thing they went into business for in the first place.

Many salespeople, for example, spend more time on account administration than they do on the phone or in the field making sales, when they could hire a part-time administrator to do this time-consuming detail work.

Most female executives spend too much time running their households, when they could easily and inexpensively delegate this task to a cleaning service or part-time mother's helper, freeing them to focus on their career or spend more quality time with their family.

Don't let this be your fate. You can trade, barter, pay for and find volunteers to help with almost everything you don't want to do, leaving you to do what you are best at, and which will ultimately make you the most money and bring you the most happiness.

Become a Con Artist

Strategic Coach Dan Sullivan once stated that all entrepreneurs are really con artists. They get other people to pay them to practice getting better at what they love to do.

Consider speaker Anthony Robbins. People pay him big money to practice his core genius. He’s arranged his life to maximize the amount of time that he is engaged in his core genius. He spends time doing what he loves, and the better he gets, the more money he earns.

Of course, most of us are not quite yet at the level of Tony Robbins. But we can take a cue from his level of focus.

For the next week, take note where you spend your time. What duties do you perform out of habit? Which do you do because you don’t want to take the time to delegate it to someone else? Finally, how much time do you spend on your core genius … and how many more hours could you invest in this area if you delegated some of your responsibilities?

Achieving greater success and joy in life starts by identifying your core genius. Delegate everything else so you can focus on what you love to do.

Build Momentum by Leaning Into It

Written by Jack Canfield | Tuesday, 01 March 2011 00:00

One of the common ways we block success is by refusing to take action on a project or opportunity until we can see the entire pathway from start to finish. We are afraid to start, because the outcome is uncertain. While we plan, think, research, and analyze, the opportunity slips away.

Highly successful people take a different approach. They just lean into it – they open themselves to opportunities and become willing to do what it takes to pursue opportunities further – without any expectations. They say “yes” to opportunities, take the first step … and then find out along the way if they want to keep going.

Stop Worrying About the “How”

When we are presented with opportunities or envision big goals, one question that stops us dead in our tracks is “But how will I do it?” Even if we can picture the goal and get excited about the end result, our minds quickly start doubting our ability to turn our dreams into reality.

For example, you may picture yourself as a best-selling author, but then a little voice in your head reminds you that you don’t know the first thing about writing a book, that odds are stacked against you getting a publishing contract, that you have never marketed a book before, and dozens of other pieces of proof that you don’t know how to achieve your goal.

The beauty of just leaning into it is that it creates momentum. Taking even one step forward broadcasts your intent to the world. The universe responds by sending the opportunities, resources and people who can help you just at the right time for you to benefit the most from them.

Just leaning into it becomes a process of co-creating with the universe. Become willing to explore the unknown, and trust that the answers and resources you need will appear. All you need to do is keep taking the logical next steps. The journey will take you where you want to go … or even someplace better.

Roadblocks or Redirection?

In The Success Principles, I share the story of a singer named Jana Stanfield. After several years working in Nashville, Tennessee, to pursue her dream of becoming a songwriter and recording artist, she concluded that trying to get a record deal was like pounding her head against a wall. She could try forever without any guarantee of success.

What Jana later realized is that when you lean into it, roadblocks are put into your path to force you onto a different path – a path that may be truer to your real purpose. She learned that even when you can’t move forward, you can turn right or left, but you have to keep moving.

By continuing to take the next logical steps, Jana found herself singing at churches. Responding to audiences’ requests for her songs on a CD, she hired an engineer to record 10 of her songs. The first time she offered her songs for sale after a church service, she made more money than she had earned that entire week in her job. She was fulfilling her purpose in her own unique way.

Today, her company produces more than 50 motivational concerts each year around the world. She started her own recording company, and her songs have been recorded by singers such as Reba McEntire and Andy Williams, as well as featured on Oprah, 20/20 and Entertainment Tonight.

Feel the Fear, but Act Anyway

As you move forward, you will have to confront your fears. Fear is natural. Most people let fear stop them from taking the necessary steps to achieve their dreams. Successful people, on the other hand, feel the fear but don’t let it stop them.

Some people will do anything to avoid feeling fear. It’s understandable – fear is uncomfortable. But most of the good stuff in life requires taking a risk, and the truth is that taking a risk means that it might not work out.

Successful people are willing to take a leap of faith, even if they are afraid. They know that if you don’t act, opportunity will pass you by. As former attorney general and U.S. senator Robert F. Kennedy once said, “Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” I also truly believe that if a goal isn’t a little bit scary, or if it doesn’t create a bit of fear within you, it’s probably not worth doing. So many people stop because “they are scared.” I say, feel that feeling, and get excited because feeling that fear means you are on to something good!

Look at your list of goals for 2011. Which have you been ignoring because you fear the risk you’ll have to take to make that dream come true? Which have you been ignoring because you simply don’t know where to start? As you consider these goals, ask yourself what you can do to simply lean into it – what are the logical first steps that you can take to begin exploring making these dreams a reality? Acknowledge your fear, and lean into it anyway. Small steps will help to build confidence and dissipate your fear, while also creating momentum to attract the resources you need to achieve your biggest goals.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Open Door for Internet Professionals in Toronto!

Career Door Inc held the I.T Career Fair at the Metro Convention Centre on Wednesday March 2, 2011. It featured companies from IBM Canada, T4G Limited, Spinmaster and Blue Cross. There was a great buzz in the air from all the job seekers lined up waiting for the opportunity to share their expertise and talents.

Get Connected Make it Happen, was part of the show this year. Have had the opportunity to review and enhance resumes for clients which gave me the insights to evaluate and offer my suggestions and critical feedback to the job seekers at the show. There were a few very interesting resumes that showed ingenuity and little cleverness! (Big fan of thinking outside the box) Below are some the recommendation and feedback that I shared.

1st Make sure you name and objective stand. It’s the first thing at the top of your resume. It should be bolded and stand out.

2nd Most of the resumes ranged for 3 to 6 pages, it was understandable due to the type of show. Many had certifications and computer program credentials. Even with this your resume should be the maximum three pages; ideally two pages would be perfect.

3rd Take advantage of (top professional networking website) and put your public profile. Give you the ability to show more of you experience and even the great possibility for the employer to connect with you. (Good thing to ask)

In speaking to the exhibitor throughout the day they were impressed with the caliber of job seekers they were meeting. The I.T industry in Toronto has gone through tough cycle in the past few years. It was indicative from the employers and job seekers that it is in a great upswing with potential job available throughout North America.

Check out for the next dates and times of events happening in the near future.

Remember Get Connected Make it Happen!

Jim Pagiamtzis is published author, professional speaker and elite entrepreneur. He can be reached at