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The Voice Of Reason

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Updated: Nov 17

This is a reprint of my article on Entrepreneur.com

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With the bittersweet conclusion of Queen Elizabeth's 70-year reign, the lessons of Elizabeth's leadership as sovereign cannot be minimalized. Elizabeth was thrust onto the throne, untethered and relatively untrained. She inherited a multi-dimensional position as sovereign of her country and the figurehead of the Commonwealth of Nations. For seven decades, Elizabeth forged her way through triumph, tragedy and trauma, yet experienced exponential growth and unrivaled admiration.

As an entrepreneur, it is with a keen eye that we must glean through the thicket of immense experiences Elizabeth forged. As a business owner, lessons on her leadership hold a dynamic approach to how we must conduct our business. Queen Elizabeth understood that her platform was as a visionary. Her platform was not focused on immediate gratification, yet it was positioned to weather volatility. Her Majesty understood the power of playing the long game.



1. Keep calm and carry on

As an entrepreneur, we are subjected to wild rides of instability, growth, and innovation. Elizabeth ascended to the throne through an unexpected turn of events. Her uncle Edward resigned, leaving Elizabeth's father the hesitant heir to the throne. Elizabeth began her young adulthood not positioning herself as one of the most powerful figureheads in the world. Instead, she was swept up in a passionate marriage to Philip, a swashbuckling naval officer who gallantly provided adventure and normalcy for the young princess.

At age 26, while on an official tour of Kenya, Princess Elizabeth became Queen. Her father died at an early age, and in his last heartbeat, she became sovereign. With the stoicism of her forefathers, she embraced her duties and became, perhaps, the most famous working mother on the planet. Elizabeth understood the importance of duty and securing the legacy of the crown.

The lesson learned is that while we, as entrepreneurs, are faced with incredible highs and lows, we must maintain an equilibrium. We must understand the prioritization of duties and carry them out to our fullest capacity. Riding the wave of the unknown and having the tenacity to maintain the clarity of the mission is essential for long-term growth and success.

2. Never complain, never explain

Legend has it that the motto of the Windsor Family is, "Never Complain, Never Explain." This credo speaks to the strength in leadership as the cornerstone of being the beacon for our brand. Queen Elizabeth was the brand of the United Kingdom. She was steadfast and consistent and did not dabble in frivolities, political alliances and hearsay.

When modern leaders are often swept up in the diversions of drama, conducting themselves in a discretionary manner and surrounding themselves with trusted advisors creates an ecosystem of respect. It is important to monitor your brand's presence and be consistent in the messaging you wish to illicit.

Related: How Complaining Rewires Your Brain for Negativity

3. Adapt to change

The Queen's reign spanned seven decades which weaved in and out of social, political and personal changes. Her career timeline shadows a documented history aligned with public adoration and dipped into sheer dislike.

Her accession was baptized in the bleak austerity of a post-war reality and morphed into the glamour and youth that inaugurated her position as a sovereign. Elizabeth, in the 90s, fell subject to deep distaste for the stoic leader unable to connect with her country after the death of Princess Diana. Ultimately, her legacy was built upon her steadfast ability to adapt during challenging times.

Queen Elizabeth's popularity weaved in and out of satisfaction, adoration and complacency. Her ability to ascertain her empire's trends, needs and desires kept her a steady presence in the consciousness of her brand's consumption.

This adaption is equally as important to entrepreneurs navigating fluctuations in their business. A solid business model should have the underpinnings to support turbulent markets, trends and socio-economic changes. It is important to understand your business's long-term vision and viability and be flexible in how you approach your brand's positioning.

Related: How to Quickly Adapt to Change and Future-Proof Your Business

4. Train your predecessors

Building a business is an arduous task and can feel isolating. You must have a backup plan and a predecessor who understands the mission and vision of your business. Queen Elizabeth, with diligence, strategically mentored and trained her heirs apparent. Elizabeth instinctively understood that the monarchy's viability rested not only upon her shoulders but on the shoulders of her heirs, Charles, William and George. With precision, the most recent royal optics portrayed her successors as strong and capable members of the firm.

Elizabeth's extensive tenure as monarch lent her the ability to train and mentor future monarchs. She forged exclusive time to coach them on the responsibilities they were expected to complete. Elizabeth understood, through experience, that it was her duty to pass the torch to the following generations.

As with entrepreneurs, it is essential to carve out valuable time to mentor and teach your team so they have the tools to facilitate your business's ultimate mission and goals. Queen Elizabeth's legacy and lessons will live on for generations to follow. Her leadership has provided a formidable roadmap for leaders worldwide.


Learn more about my obsession with all things branding, business and Queen Elizabeth!

--YOU GOT THIS--Jules


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Updated: Jun 20


I love analytics. I love website traffic. Ultimately, the more traffic you attract the more relationships you have the opportunity to build. More importantly, I am on a mission to understand the complexities of building a loyal following on my website. I adore the dance with Google, and ask, "How can I make you love me more"?


Here are two of my favorite ways to grow my business organically. They are different, yet the same. SEOs and Pinterest flirt with Google and bring hits to my website organically.


Warning: Take this sage advice with a steady cadence. Entrepreneurs are always striving to build their audience and reach. Overwhelm can be a distinct path to burnout.




Tip #1 : SEOs- ( SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZERS)

The power of SEOs can change your business and website's visibility. I am obsessed with the power of SEOs (SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZERS). SEOs are simply keywords that your audience searches for to find you. Keywords are the key to unlocking the path for thousands or millions of potential clients, customers, or superfans to find your site.


The world of search engine optimization is complex and ever-changing, but you can easily understand the basics, and even a small amount of SEO knowledge can make a big difference. I liken SEOs to chasing water down a mountain. You capture the perfect word in the palm of your hands and then it is gone. POOF!


The game changes. The SEO game is a marathon, not a sprint. It is important you do the research on SEO's and I am a big champion of Keywords Everywhere. Keywords Everywhere is a Chrome extension that allows you to do comprehensive research on SEOs. It allows you to see the analytics of competitive websites and glean from their keyword success.


To understand the magnitude of SEOs-start by asking yourself, what would my potential client/customer be googling? It is important to pepper in your website content with these key phrases to catch the attention of all search engines. This expansive topic is fascinating for me (frustrating for others). If you are interested to learn more about the secrets of SEOs, get my free Ebook on this page:






Tip #2: Pinterest- Let Me Introduce You To This Search Engine

(I'm obsessed with the sleeping giant.)


Don’t be fooled by this unassuming powerhouse of a search engine. Yes, I said search engine. Many users are misinformed about Pinterest’s power, and they often label it “social media.” I’m obsessed with this platform since it is Google in disguise. Pinterest attracts users that are in the discovery phase of a search. Users are looking for recipes, clothing, and even inspiration in their lives. And, the amazing part of the user experience is that users are poised to purchase. The algorithms are such that content can be used and reused, unlike social media platforms.


The Pinterest algorithm soaks up current pins. For example, if it is February, pins that smack of love and Valentine’s tend to garner more interest. How do you start on Pinterest? Use your Canva account to create appealing visuals that aren't blatant advertisements. First, think about your desired audience and ask yourself, what would this audience be interested in? My desired audience is interested in personal and professional development, so they are most likely drawn to words of inspiration and personal growth tips. Don’t make your pin specific to a sale or advertisement. Draw in your audience with a visually appealing display of something you represent. For example, a client who happens to own a bakery should post a recipe or a photo of a decadent pastry. This expands visibility. Remember, visibility is the key to establishing your brand.


Why Pinterest Works


When you draw a client in with your vibrant pin, you have the opportunity to expand on this pin in your content. When a user clicks on the pin, it immediately takes them to your website. This provides a one-step process. A photo and simple content attract a user; then, they are swept to your website, where you can elaborate on your life-altering product or service. The simple 1-click step of getting a user to your website will lead to client engagement and a possible sale. (Remember, simple is better. The more a user is required to navigate different platforms, the more likely you will lose their attention.) What's even better? If a Pinterest user pins one of your pins to their board, all of their followers will experience your brand. Pinterest has the capability to expand your visibility exponentially.


My Tip: Budget a little money to invest in Pinterest Ads. You can budget as little as two dollars a day, and your pins will be seen. My website hits doubled in the first week of testing out this marketing strategy.


Sidenote:

*The demographics of Pinterest are 80% women who possess untapped buying potential. I typically curate my pins to be female-centric.


The life of an entrepreneur is one of trial and error. Understand what works for you. Yet, never rest on your laurels. The creativity lies in the explosion of exploration.


You got this!-- Jules

Get Obsessed With Building A Business you LOVE! Check out previous blogs.



Julie Lokun, JD is a mom to 4 boys and is passionate about writing, blogging, serving, and podcasting. Julie is a 4-time author with accolades of being the #1 new release on Amazon. She is just trying to figure it out as she does in life.





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Updated: Jun 17

Guess what movie I just saw?


Hint: Maverick (Top Gun) with

Tom Cruise.


I walked into the theater with full-on buttered popcorn and no expectations. The exhilarating story of a cutting-edge fighter pilot took me on a ride where I felt that I was the co-pilot. Maverik was a leader in terms of getting in the cock pit and doing what he demanded of his team. Maverick led his crew with integrity and took calculated risks. His roguish precision was a nail-biting tribute to his training and authority. Maverick embodied his purpose, passion, and love for living on the edge.


How does Maverick's flair for pushing the envelope translate to our ambition to be successful as professionals? Simply put, we need to push our limits and also stay grounded in our personal morals and mission. With a broad stroke for gravitas, I will suggest that we are all bombarded with shiny object syndrome. We chase what is new and the blind promise of the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.


When we chase shiny objects we are distracted from our core mission and goals.


Definition of Shiny Object Syndrome:

Shiny object syndrome, also called "SOS" is a pop-cultural, psychological concept where people focus on a shiny, new object, in other words, whatever is most current, trendy, or the latest concept, regardless of how valuable or helpful it may ultimately be. While at the moment it seems to be something worth focusing one's attention upon, it is ultimately a distraction, either a personal distraction or something that is done intentionally to distract others.


Social Media and Chasing Shiny Objects

We are told that we need followers on social media to be relevant. We are told that we need have our perfect images splashed on YouTube and TikTok. Yet the return on investment is minimal. When we take a look at buyer behaviors it is clear that intimacy is what buyers, listeners, and readers crave. Typically a buyer, client, or audience needs to have an intimate attachment to our messaging. The polished, slick and often filtered snapshots on social media are not connectable messages.


Humans, as a collective want to protect themselves from judgment, pain, and disillusionment. We want to be liked. We strive to be adored. I hypothesize that the constructs of social media and the pursuit of instant gratification are a great distractor in building influence and real relationships.


The human experience is one of protection. When we are frightened we tell ourselves to self-protect. We do everything we can to armor ourselves up and protect ourselves from negative experiences.




This is where Brene Brown jumps in.

Brene Brown (if you have been hiding under a rock), is an American research professor, lecturer, author, and podcast host. Brown is known in particular for her research on shame, vulnerability, and leadership. A long-time researcher and academic, Brown became famous following a widely viewed TEDx talk in 2010. Since then she has written six number-one New York Times bestselling books, hosts two podcasts, and has filmed a lecture for Netflix as well as a series about her latest book, Atlas Of The Heart on HBO Max.


Take it over Brene:

When we’re afraid, even our neurobiology screams ARMOR UP. Everything screams, “Self protect!” As Brown says, if we want to be consciously daring, we need to say no armor. We have to double down on being both transparent and vulnerable. If you’re feeling beat up right now, you’re in good company. The easy thing is to self-protect, but if you want to keep moving toward your mission, you’ve got to refuel.


The hybrid of Maverick and Brene:

How can we, as professionals up our game with emotional integrity? Quite simply it is to take calculated risks and be authentic. Ask yourself- are feeling burnout from doing everything and nothing is happening? If the answer is yes, read on. Personal and professional satisfaction starts with self-awareness.


Building your personal or professional brand begins on a journey of discovery.


The Maverick-Inspired tips to holistic growth:

Tip #1: The Mission

First and foremost, my favorite tool is writing a mission statement. There is profound power in seeing the foundation of your vision and values scrawled on paper. A mission statement cannot simply be written and read.


Your mission statement needs to be lived.

A mission statement needs to articulate why you exist, what you stand for and the goals you strive for. On paper, your mission statement is powerful. However, inaction nullifies your mission. A mission statement is only powerful when you take inspired action.


I am obsessed with the power of a mission statement. It can be a confusing exercise in putting pen to paper-so I often recommend Franklin Covey's Mission Statement Builder. This mission statement builder is easy to follow and prompts you with questions to curate a statement that reflects where you are and where you want to go.



Tip #2: Take Inspired Action

Once you have taken a moment to articulate a purpose-driven mission the journey begins. When you soak in the profound reflection of your earthly existence, you are called to action. Take inspired action. Nothing happens when you are complacent in your life. A real-life maverick takes inspired action in alignment with their purpose. A maverick is unorthodox and edgy. A maverick lives life on the edge.

Be a maverick.


A maverick: An unorthodox or independent-minded person

Be vulnerable, yet do not overshare. Audiences crave the hero story. Audiences crave someone they connect with who took a leap of faith. Audiences adore the hero story and kicking fear in the face.

  • What is your hero story?

  • What can you do differently?

  • How can you take calculated risks to share your story and brand?


I am obsessed with sharing my story on podcasts. My story weaves tales of low self-esteem, people-pleasing, perfectionism, divorce, trials in parenting, and the search to leave my legacy on earth. These are the stories that connect me with my audience.

Tip #3: Pitch Yourself

Get out there. Pitch yourself on different mediums. Write a blog. Write a book. Get creative with the story you need to tell. I know blogging is something I am passionate about. I understand the power of SEOs. (I love KEYWORDS EVERYWHERE for SEO boosts).


Court Google with reckless abandon. Once you understand the mission that you are firmly rooted in-start creating. Send out press releases (I love EIN Presswire). Pitch yourself to podcasts. After all, guesting on a podcast is essentially free marketing.


Pitch yourself to media outlets. Your story needs to be heard. Building relationships through the vehicle of media expedites your overall mission. Get your voice heard the right way. Take calculated risks that disseminate your message. Be unabashedly you and build authentic relationships through your story.

Just like Maverick.



#maverik #topgun #brenebrown #daringtolead #googleyourself #calculatedrisks #franklincovey #missionstatement #keywordseverywhere #garryehall #usnavy


You got this- Jules

P.S. I just had the opportunity to interview the original Maverick, helicopter pilot, and really nice human and family man, Rear Admiral Garry E. Hall. Garry served as the national security advisor to the president and has a podcast called Admiral's Almanac. Garry embodies the gusto of Maverick and stays rooted in his mission.


Watch it here!


And do not forget to share your voice. Share your stories on podcasts!

Find out here how to guest on podcasts! (I am a little obsessed)



For more information about creating a powerful brand check out some of my other articles!

How to be a content creator

5 Marketing Trends in 2022

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