Monday, December 04, 2006

What's Your Plan for 2007?

I love this time of year – every year I carve out time in December to finalize plans for my business for the upcoming year. What do you have planned for 2007?

If you haven’t done so, set aside at least 30 minutes over the coming weeks to start planning and visionning for the upcoming year, as well as celebrating this past years successes. Here are some questions to get you going (and feel free to add your own):

Reflecting on 2006:
1. What was the scope of my core business this year?
2. What new clients am I serving? What new products/services am I offering?
3. How did my business results compare to my business objectives for the year?
4. What new skillls have I gained that will be useful for my business?
5. What new knowledge do I now have that will be useful for my business?
6. What new contacts did I make?
7. What new resources did I acquire that will be useful?
8. What am I most proud of accomplishing this year with respect to my business?
9. How will I celebrate this?
10. My biggest learning about my business this year was....
11. My biggest stretch this past year was.....

Visioning for 2007:
1. My vision for 2007 is...
2. I want to serve ____ clients/customers in 2007 (insert number). I want to serve these particular clients/customers:
3. I want to generate ____ dollars in 2007
4. What additional resources do I need in order to make my business as successful as possible?
5. What additional skills or knowledge do I need to make my business as successful as possible?
6. One limiting belief I need to overcome next year is…
7. One thing I can do next year to grow my business is…..
8. One thing I can do to challenge myself, and my business, next year is….
9. My three most important goals in 2007 are.....
10. By December 31st 2007, I want to have……

Stretch yourself to make your vision for 2007 as big, bold, specific and challenging for yourself as possible. Refer to your vision often, share it with the world. Who can you draw on for support to make this vision a reality?

I will be starting the 90 Day Biz Success program, an intensive group coaching program for business owners who are looking for a structure for peer support and resources to move their business forward. The program will start on Monday January 8th, meeting bi-weekly on Mondays from 7-8 pm (EST). Group calls will be held on January 8, 22, February 5, 19, March 5, 19 with the final call on April 2/07.

The program includes:
* 7 x 1 hour group coaching calls (by phone in a teleseminar format)
* 3 x 30 minute individual coaching sessions with myself
* Module Notes
* 36 Biz Tips Delivered to your inbox 3 times a week for the 12 weeks
* A group follow up call one month after the program ends (May)

We will be covering a range of topics pertinent to business owners and their success, including visioning, identifying your leverage points, marketing strategy and budget, and much more. For more information, please visit: The program costs $149USD/month or $350 USD for the entire program. Space is limited to 8 business owners. To register please contact me at 1-866-217-1960 or email me.

I look forward to hearing from you. Please feel free to comment on the exercise!

With best wishes,

Jennifer Britton, CPCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
Email: jennifer [at] potentialsrealized[dot]com

Monday, November 27, 2006

Holiday Virtual Retreat - Sat. December 9/06

Holiday Virtual Retreat - Saturday December 9/06
Haven Amidst the Holidays
10 - 3 pm (EST) - By Phone

Looking for some quiet time during the busy holiday season to reflect on 2006, and start planning for 2007?

Join me on Saturday December 9th from 10 am – 3pm (EST) for a five hour virtual retreat. Connect (by phone) with other busy professionals from across North America (and possibly around the world) as we:

* Reflect on the successes and challenges of 2006
* Explore our current level of satisfaction with our work and life
* Connect with our most important values
* Develop our personal vision (for work, life, family etc)
* Create an Action Plan for 2007

The group will meet every hour by phone for the first twenty minutes of the hour, and we will spend the remaining part of the hour individually working through creative exercises, designed to provide clarity and haven amongst this busy holiday time.

What participants receive:
* A retreat manual which contains the exercises for the retreat, as well as creative design space, along with follow up resources
* A follow up group call, scheduled for Thursday January 4 2007 from 7:30 – 8:30 pm (EST)
* A one-on-one thirty minute coaching session with Certified Coach Jennifer Britton

Participants will take away:
* The opportunity to refresh and recharge during the holiday season
* Clarity and focus on their level of balance in different areas of their life
* An understanding of their personal values
* Their personal vision story
* A personal action plan for 2007

Your investment: $75 if booked before November 29th, plus the cost of your long-distance phone calls. To register, please contact Jennifer Britton by phone at 1-866-217-1960 or by email at Registrations will be accepted until December 8th. Regular pricing is $97 when booked after November 29th.

Registrations can be made by phone or fax (Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960). To download a registration form, please click here. For more information, please visit our Group Coaching Essentials website.

I hope that you will join me! Space is limited to 10 retreat participants.

With best wishes,

Jennifer Britton, CPCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized

What are Job Seekers looking for?

What are Job Seekers Looking for?

This month's ASTD T & D Magazine quotes interesting research found by Accenture regarding the organization characteristics that matter most to job seekers. What do you think they are?

Here they are in order of importance - the top ten organization characteristics that matter most to job seekers:

1. Offers challenging and interesting work - 60%
2. Recognizes and rewards accomplishments - 58%
3. Provides an opportunity for fast career growth and advancement - 44%
4. Is financially strong - 42%
5. Is people oriented - 42%
6. Offers flexible work arrangements - 41%
7. Is innovative - 33%
8 Is approachable - 27%
9. Fosters a team-oriented environment - 27%
10. Is a global company - 26%

What does your organization have to offer to potential job candidates? Are you surprised by these results? What do you have planned for 2007 to strengthen these characteristics? If you are a job seeker, do you agree?

Trends are forecasting a talent shortage in many industries across North America over the next 5-10 years as the baby boomers retire. How will this impact you?

I'd welcome hearing your thoughts with respect to these questions. Please feel free to comment below.

Jennifer Britton, CHRP, CPCC, CPT
Potentials Realized

Monday, November 20, 2006

90 Days Biz Success Program starts January 8th

The Biz Success 90 Day Group Coaching program

Are you looking to move your business forward in 2007? I am excited to announce new 2007 dates for the Biz Success program.

This 90 Day program is designed for both new entrepreneurs who are looking to launch their business, as well as experienced entrepreneurs who are wanting a kick start to move their business to the next level.

This ninety-day program combines two group coaching sessions per month (by phone) along with one thirty minute individual coaching session with Certified Coach Jennifer Britton. Course participants also receive thirty-six business tips delivered to their email box, three times a week, as well as a toolbox of resources in the program workbook. Course size is limited to 8 participants to ensure individualized attention.

Benefit from the momentum created in a group environment, and join other business owners from across North America in this intensive business success program.

Participants will:
*Develop or refine their business vision
*Explore their unique strengths and abilities as a business person, identifying areas for improvement
*Identify opportunities for collaboration and partnerships with other business owners
*Develop their marketing strategy and budget
*Investigate how their business can leverage technology to build their client base and increase sales through an introduction to blogs, podcasts and other platforms
*Develop a concrete business action plan for 2007

One session will be dedicated to additional topics that matter most to participants.

The program includes
*7 one-hour interactive teleseminar programs;
*Bi-weekly topic module notes and resource links
*36 business tips delivered to your in-box, three times a week during the 90 day program
*Three individual coaching sessions with Coach Jennifer Britton (30 minutes each by phone)
*A group follow-up call one month after the program

Certified Coach Jennifer Britton is also a part-time Faculty member for Business Studies at the post-secondary level, and is a co-author of “Starting Your Own Business – A Guide for Women in York Region” (YSSTAB, 2006). Jennifer has worked with entrepreneurs in Canada and the US to successfully launch, market and expand their businesses.

Your investment: $149US/month or $375US/program (plus any long distance charges)

Next program begins: Mondays 7-8 pm (EST) January 8th
Group Calls: Jan 8, 22, Feb. 5, 19, March 5, 19/07. Final Call Monday April 2/07

For more information, please click the link above. The course size is limited to 8 business owners, so please register early. You can register by phoning 1-866-217-1960 or by emailing me at

I will be holding a free information call on the program in the next few weeks -- if you would like to be notified of the call, please send me an email with BizSuccessJan in the subject line.

I look forward to hearing from you!

With best wishes,

Jennifer Britton, CHRP, CPCC, CPT
Potentials Realized
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Friday, November 17, 2006

Creating the Foundation for Virtual Team Success

Creating The Foundation of Virtual Team Success
Copyright 2006 - Jennifer Britton/Potentials Realized. All rights reserved

I have been thinking quite a bit lately about virtual teams, in part due to a request from one of my client organizations. It's taken me back to my own work as a virtual team manager, and provided me with the opportunity to reflect on some of the success factors which made our virtual teams so productive, and also fun to work with. As I have mentionned in my former work I have managed teams stretching across 10 countries of one region as well as 10 regions of one country. This led to many challenges, but also tremendous opportunities for us as a team.

The following are some of the ingredients needed to create the foundation for virtual team success:

1. Ensuring a clear understanding of roles and responsibilities - As a virtual team, the need to clearly define roles and responsibilities becomes even more paramount than in face to face team environments. As a manager, or even team member, it is critical that team members (and managers) fully understand their roles and responsibilities, reporting relationships, as well as where roles and responsibilities overlap. If you are part of a virtual team, are you clear on this?

2. Negotiating matrix management relationships - A matrix management structure exists when a professional may be managed by two different managers, delineated often by projects they are involved with. Given the nature of virtual teams, individual members may often be part of a matrix management reporting process. If this is the case, it is often beneficial to have a three way discussion between both managers and the staff member, ensuring that everyone has a common understanding regarding who manages what, what reporting relationships exist, how work processes will be weighted and prioritized.

3. Working across cultural differences - Given that virtual teams are often global in nature, or even cross-continental, it is important that cultural differences are understood. Differences may exist along several continuum, including prioritization, language, the concept of time and management. Exploring individual cultural differences as well as creating a common ground and way of working for the team.

4. Creating opportunities for face-to-face interaction - The effectiveness of virtual teams can be greatly enhanced by budgeting and planning for face-to-face interaction at least once a year. A multi-day retreat can serve as a forum for getting to know each other, creating a shared workplan, discussing strategic directions and creating a shared vision for the team and its work.

As a former virtual team manager I have seen the transformational results from multi-day face-to-face retreats with my virtual teams. Even by harnessing the best technology, we cannot replace face-to-face interaction. Although budgeting and advocating for these processes seemed daunting at times, my managers were quickly won over by the results of our first annual retreat.

I now work with virtual teams to facilitate these types of retreats, so if you are interested in discussing what is possible for your virtual team, please feel free to contact me.

5. Developing a common vision -- I have made reference to the importance of developing a common vision. A shared, common vision, understood by all virtual team members acts as an important anchor for decision making, accountability and results. There are a number of vision processes which can be undertaken, depending on the needs of the client. Developing this in a face-to-face session, at the start of the virtual team creation is ideal, although creating this mid-stream will also bring benefits to the team.

I would be interested in hearing your thoughts -- what other success factors do you see as important for virtual teams? Please feel free to comment below.

Jennifer Britton, CPT, CPCC, CHRP
Potentials Realized
Email: jennifer[at]potentialsrealized[dot]com

Jennifer Britton, CPT, CHRP, CPCC is the founder of Potentials Realized, a Canadian based performance improvement company. Jennifer works with organizations who are looking to accelerate their business results through improved teamwork and performance issues. Jennifer is a Certified Coach, Human Resource Professional and Certified Performance Technologist. She has worked with corporate, non-profit and governmental clients in four continents. For more information, please visit

You may reprint this article free of charge in your newsletter, magazine or website/blog, provided that they are unedited and the the copyright, bio and contact information appears with each article. Articles appearing on the web must provide a hyperlink to our site. Please provide us with a courtesy copy of the print or email issues containg the article, or the URL of the article site. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Do you have what it takes to succeed?

I am back from two fantastic international conferences (the CSTD 2006 Annual Conference and the ICF 2006 International Conference). It's been wonderful to be able to connect with other professionals over the past few weeks, as well as hear from some of today's business thought leaders. Over the past two weeks I've heard from some of today's innovators who are creating the edge - Dan Pink, Guy Kawasaki, Lynne Swift and Marshall Goldsmith. Each one of them has an incredibly powerful message for the business world -- from new ways of thinking (literally), to innovation, our relationship with money, to how to harness your team's fullest potential.

The title for this blog "Do you have what it takes to succeed?" stems from Dan Pink's book "A Whole New Mind" which Dan presented on at the ICF Conference. This was the second time I have seen him speak in the last year, both times equally powerful. The question I've posed arises from Dan's thesis of the need to foster new human abilities as we move out of the Information Age into the Conceptual Age.

As we look around in today's business environment, change is evident everywhere we turn. Are the old paradigms of disciplines, thinking in silos, and left-brain approaches still serving us? Dan writes about new abilities needed by the future's leaders -- design, story, symphony, empathy, play, meaning. All of these come from a more right brained approach to business and leadership. How much are you using your right brain? Which skills have you fostered.

Take a look at Dan's book. It's a great read. You can order the book off Amazon via his website.

Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960
Email: jennifer[at]potentialsrealized[dot]com

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Virtual Teams Defined

Virtual Teams are everywhere, and growing in numbers every day. So how do we define them?

Wikipedia defines a virtual team as,
"A virtual team - also known as a Geographically Dispersed Team (GDT) - is a group of individuals who work across time, space and organizational boundaries with links strenghtened by webs of communication technology. They have complimentary skills and are committed to a common purpose, have interdependent performance goals, and share an approach to work for which they hold themselves mutally accountable."

If you are looking for some resources on virtual teams, you may want to check out the following sites and resources:

Carter MacNamara's Management Help Portal : In addition to resources on virtual teams, there are many additional resources applicable to management topics for both for profit and not-for-profit organizations

Cynthia Cantu: Virtual Teams : A wonderful research paper on virtual teams which will provide you with great background information

There is lots more out there on the web. If you have some great virtual team resource links, please feel free to post these as a comment.


Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Virtual Teams - What's all the Buzz?

Globalization, shrinking travel budgets and enhanced technology have led to virtual tams becoming common place in today's business world.

Virtual teams span distance, timezones, geographic locations, and often language and culture.

As a former Director and Manager of Programs, a large part of my job involved virtual team management. In the 1990s, prior to today's technological advances, my role as a virtual team in leader was often undertaken by long-range radio, and at best, telephone. This was before the days of Email! Interspersed were blessed times of face-to-face meetings with my virtual team. Email has certainly made virtual team management. My last role as a Manager involved managing staff across 10 countries -- no easy feat but made much easier through email and communications technology.

The advent of the Internet and other wireless communication has provided a catalyst for virtual teams popping up in most industries, sectors, and countries around the world. And yet the challenges have not changed - communication, trust, and finding a way to work effectively across distance.

In following posts, I will be exploring the world of virtual teams, virtual team management and virtual team performance. What's your biggest question about virtual teams?


Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Monday, October 16, 2006

How Engaged Is Your Workforce?

I'm reposting a blog post from one of my companion blogs, Your Balanced Life!, which I wrote almost a year ago (November 16 2005). I've been having a lot of discussions lately around employee engagement lately with organizations here in Canada and am sure that you will appreciate this one:

"A recent study of 85,000 workers in 16 countries across four continents found that only one in seven employees are "highly" engaged in their jobs and willing to go that extra step. This study was carried out with people working for large and midsize companies

The Towers Perrin Global Workforce Study found that 14% of workers surveyed around the world are highly engaged, 62% are moderately engaged, and 24% are disengaged. Employee engagement is the measure of people's willingness and ability to give discretionary effort at work.

Here in Canada, 17% of the 5,100 workers surveyd indicated that they were highly engaged, 66% moderately engaged and 17% disengaged. We ranked fifth, with respondences from Mexico indicating the highest levels of engagement (40%) followed by Brazil (31%). The US rakned thrid with 21% of respondents indicating that they are "highly engaged", 63% moderately engaged and 16% disengaged.

The Toronto Star (November 15 2005) indicates that in Canada the most important factor influencing their rating was senior management's interest in employee well-being. Two years ago a similar study found that 21% of employees were highly engaged."

What is the state of engagement in your organization? What is senior management's interest in employee well-being? What is one thing you can do this week to boost the level of engagement for yourself and your team?

I'd be interested in hearing your story and speaking with you if you are looking to boost employee engagement in your organization.

To an "engaged" week,

Jennifer Britton, CPCC, CHRP, CPT
Potentials Realized
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Monday, October 02, 2006

What are your strengths?

What are your strengths? If you are interested in looking at what your signature strengths are, you may want to check out . This free 30 minute online assessment is a fantastic tool for business leaders, business teams and business owners to get a sense of what your core character strengths are. The assessment will identify your top strengths of out of a total of 24 strengths including love of learning, ingenuity, integrity, honesty, and zest.

This assessment has evolved out of the research undertaken by those in the Positive Psychology field which focuses on strengths and potentials of individuals, rather than mental illness. For more information on this amazing field, you will want to read Dr. Martin Seligman's book - Authentic Happiness.


Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized
Email Me
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Monday, September 25, 2006

Does Your Company Have a Blog?

Is your company a member of the blogosphere? Do you have a business or corporate blog?

Blogging has quickly become a compliment to traditional media houses, allowing customers to find out more about the face behind the website or phone number.

Here's a fun article from Brian Brown on 101 Reasons for Your Small Business to Have a Blog

I've seen for myself what blogging has done for my business:
  • Enabled me to provide more information and resources to my clients around the world on an on-going basis
  • Reduced my marketing and advertising costs
  • Allowed me to quickly spread the word about the upcoming programs and services I am offering on a global level
  • Connected me with some amazing resources, and collaborators
  • Shortened the time needed to convert prospects into clients
  • Expanded my client base into 6 new countries this year!

If you are looking for some resources on where to go for support in creating your own blog, check out Build a Better Blog by Patsi Krakoff and Denise Wakeman. They are a phenomenal resource in this area.

If you are a member of a larger corporation or Fortune 500, you may also want to check out Easton Ellsworth's Fortune 500 Corporate Blog Review Series at BusinessBlogWire.

If you are just reading blogs, and not creating one for your company -- what are you waiting for?

Jennifer J. Britton ~ Potentials Realized

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Are your goals sitting in the drawer?

I came across a great blog and resource regarding goals last week -- Jill Koening's Goal Blog ( Jill was featured over the weekend on Fox News Saturday.

Goal setting, along with time management, continue to be some of the most prevalent issues facing organizational teams and businesses today. When was the last time you revisited your business goals? Your team/department goals? Your own personal goals?

As we move into fall, and soon into the last quarter of the year, consider your goals for 2006. Have you looked at them lately, or are they collecting dust in your drawer after being written down earlier this year? What goals have you accomplished this year? Have you taken the time to celebrate them? What goals are still left? What can you do to ensure you meet them?

The next 90 Days Business Success Group Coaching program will be starting on October 9th on Mondays from 7 - 8 am (EST). We will be meeting twice a month as a group by phone, and once a month I will be doing a 30 minute individual coaching session with each participant.

The Business Success Group Coaching program is for business owners who are looking to create extraordinary results for their business. We will be covering a range of topics including business visionning, marketing, goal setting, and values. One of the most valuable components of the program is the momentum created and dedicated focus on your business for the 90 Day period. I will be writing more about the program on this blog in the coming weeks, as the next program starts very soon. Space is limited to 8 business owners. Registration forms are available here.

If you answered - my goals are still sitting in the drawer - and your vision for what lies ahead is BIG, I hope that you will join me in moving your business forward starting on October 9th.

To reserve your spot, please email me at or call toll free 1-866-217-1960.

With best wishes,

Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized

Friday, September 08, 2006

POP! Stand Out in Any Crowd

Are you a business owner, manager or employee who is looking for some tools to make you stand out in the crowd? How do you communicate your competitive advantage? What sets you apart? What makes you unique?

A new book has hit the bookshelf, written by Sam Horn, who I had the privledge of hearing speak a couple of years ago at a conference. She is launching her newest book - POP! Stand Out in Any Crowd. The book covers 25 ways to create attention getting titles, taglines and approaches. POP stands for purposeful, original, and pithy. Looking at what I took away from Sam's one hour presentation a few years ago, I can't wait to get my own copy! For more information on the book visit the book's website, or order it from Amazon today.

To read Sam Horns' article on "What is the POP process and How Can it help me be One of a Kind" click here. Enjoy!

Have a great weekend,

Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized

Monday, August 21, 2006

Intergenerational Challenges and Opportunities in the Workforce

An evolving issue facing most, if not all, organizations are the challenges and opportunities created by an intergenerational workforce. Take a look around your company or organizational and likely your workforce will be composed of Baby Boomers, Gen Xers, and members of Gen Y (also referred to as Nexters). Intergenerational management issues, coupled with the projected talent shortage created by Baby Boomer's upcoming retirement, will continue to evolve as a critical issue for organizations globally.

Drawing on the dynamic strengths and diversity of these different groups have implications for many areas of management including training, employe engagement, leadership, HR, as well as for business owners in terms of marketing, culture, hiring etc. Over the next few weeks, I will be looking at the different generational cohorts in this blog, along with some of my thoughts on implimcations for training, engagement, leadership and HR. I hope that you will stay posted and I am looking forward to your comments as well.

Stay Tuned,

Jennifer Britton, CPT, CHRP, CPCC
Potentials Realized

Thursday, August 03, 2006

2006 Top Human Capital Priorities

I came across an interesting article entitled "Preparation is Vital" by Kevin Oakes published in the July 2006 ASTD T and D magazine which outlines the Human Capital Top Priorities for 2006 (Source: IHRIM, Knoweldge Infusion). Before I give you the results, what are your the top three human capital priorities in your organization this year?

No surprize, with the forecasted talent shortage facing most parts of of North America due to the onset of baby boomer retirement, the number one priority for 39% of organizations surveyed was talent acquisition/recruitment. Closely followed in second place was leadership development (35%). Tied for third, was aligning people and business goals, along with performance management (34% each).

As an external consultant and coach, I am seeing many of these priorities reflected in the organizations I work with, partciularly leadership development and the alignment of people and business goals. As a business owner, manager or consultant, what are your thoughts on this? What are your human capital priorities for 2006?

Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Ethics and Corporate Social Responsibility

Where does your business or profession stand in terms of ethics and corporate social responsibility? I teach a business course where we explore the imperative of ethical and socially responsible behavior for businesses and business professionals. Earlier this week I watched a very provocative movie, The Corporation (, which explores these topics in a very candid, upfront manner.

Social responsibility is often seen as the integration of economic, social and environmental initiatives into a businesses operation and culture. Strategis Canada has established a website dedicated to the exploration of this critical topic for business today. As they state, "Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) resembles the business pursuit of sustainable development and the triple bottom line". Historically business' bottom line has equaled profit, with no or little regard to the business impact on communities, small scale economies, or the environment.

A couple of years ago I was privledged to hear Nobel Peace Prize Winner, and former President of Costa Rica, Oscar Arias speak on this topic to the 2002 ASTD International Conference in New Orleans. As someone who dedicated the early part of my career to sustainable development initiatives around the world, and a Masters in Environmental Studies, I was very intrigued by what he had to say. Sadly, more than one-third of attendees left before the end of his keynote in which he challenged American business to play a leadership role in the world on corporate social responsibility. Interestingly enough this was before the ImClone and Enron scandals hit the radar screen.

What is your role in supporting corporate social responsibility? What is your stance on ethics - do you have an ethical code in place?

For more information on corporate social responsibility you may want to check out the Government of Canada's Strategis website dedicated to this topic - it includes discussion on the definition of CSR, best practices, as well as tools which can be used by business and other organizations to review and enhance their performance with respect to CSR.

If you haven't seen the movie, The Corporation, check it out. It will certainly generate some interesting dialogue.

Jennifer Britton, MES, CPT, CHRP, CPCC
Potentials Realized

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Another Resource for Creating an Engaged Workforce

As I've said in earlier posts, creating an engaged workforce is a major theme in corporations at this time. A new book came across my desk last week which addresses this issue. Destination Profit: Creating People Profit Opportunities in Your Organization, by Scott Cawood and Rita V. Bailey is an excellent read on employee engagement. Based on the premise that people=profit Cawood and Bailey look at a handful of very successful organizations which put their people front and centre in terms of bottom line success.

This book is a great read, and provides a trusty toolkit of questions and exercises for organizations to reflect on. This book is also a great resource for organizational consultants who partner with organizations to address employee engagemet issues. Thoughout the book, Cawood and Bailey share their 4 A Process to maximize business growth while handressing engagement and passion of employees. Co-published by ASTD, this book can be ordered at the ASTD Online store at

What resources have you come across related to employee engagement that are useful for your organization or work?

Until next time,

Jennifer Britton, CHRP, CPCC, CPT
Potentials Realized
Email me here

Friday, July 07, 2006

The 90 Day Business Success Group Coaching Program starts July 18th

Are you looking to dedicate time and energy in order to move your business forward? The 90 Day Business Success Group Coaching Program begins in a few weeks.

The program will start on July 18th and we will be meeting twice a month for group calls, and twice a month for a thirty minute individual coaching call. The program will be held from mid-July to mid-October on Tuesdays from 12 - 1 pm (EST). We will be looking at issues related to business vision, business planning, marketing, partnerships and more.

This is a hands-on, interactive program designed to support business owners in growing their business. As a result of the program, business owners will have:
  • Developed or refined their business plan, grounded in their passion and purpose;
  • Clarified their buinsess vision and values;
  • Created their annual marketing plan, along with the associated budget;
  • Identified their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

Participants will also be asked to identify and work towards two other goals for their own business during the 90 day period. Business owners will benefit from the on-going support and resources during the 90 days of this program.

The program cost is $175 CDN per month (for 3 months), or $450 paid in one installment. The course is limited to 8 business owners.

For more information, or to receive a course information package, please email me at or call toll free 1-866-217-1960. Registration forms can be downloaded by clicking the blog title above. I hope that you will join me!

With best wishes,

Jennifer Britton, MES, CPT, CHRP, CPCC ~ Potentials Realized


Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Off of the Bookshelf: The Power of Full Engagement

I'm midway through reading an excellent book - The Power of Full Engagement from Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz. If high performance issues relate to you in the workplace or business, this is a must-read.

The terms Engaged, Engaging and Engagement seem to pop up everywhere these days in business. The Power of Full Engagement is based on solid research and highlights many real life case studies, while providing a powerful model and tools for the reader to follow.

The book also mentions the 2001 Gallup results on an engaged workforce - how 55% of the workforce is "not engaged", and 19% are "actively disengaged", those that are unhappy at the workplace and also regularly share their feelings with co-workers. The Gallup Results found only 26% of the workforce "engaged". How engaged are you at work? Your staff?

Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized

Monday, June 19, 2006

Are you vacation deprived?

Every year Expedia undertakes an International Vacation Deprivation (TM) Survey, looking at vacation habits of employed workers in the US, Canada, Great Britain, Germany, France and Australia.

This year's results included:
  • 33% of employed adults in the US usually don't take all their vacation, with the average worker surveyed giving back an average of 4 days to their employer. This translates to 574 Million Vacation days/year worth, $75.72 Billion.
  • 24% of employed adults in Canada usually don't take all their vacation, with the average employed person giving back an average of 2 vacation days to their employer. This translates to $5.1 Billion dollars per year.

The results of the whole 2006 Expedia survey can be found at

I was interviewed last week by Kavita Gosyne of the Metro News here in Toronto ( She was looking at the importance of vacation for all Canadian workers, and particularly for young professionals. As I mention in her article, vacations are important for workers of all ages. As I stated, "Not only is vacation time good for the employee, but it is good for the company. "A lot of it comes down to the difference between working and working productively. Are they(the employees) working at optimal productivity? Work-life balance impacts company productivity and profitability. It makes (good) business sense.". The link to Kavita's article can be found by clicking the blog title above.

What is the state of work-life balance for you? For your company? Are you fully recharged and working at optimal productivity levels? If you would like more information and resources I would invite you to visit my sister blog, Your Balanced Life! ( Much of the HR Consulting work I undertake with companies often has it's roots in work-life balance. I also run on a quarterly basis a Your Balanced Life! teleseminar program, supporting busy professionals in enhancing their work-life balance.

I'd be interested in hearing from you - Areyou vacation deprived? How do you recharge? What's the state of work-life balance in your life? Drop me an email at or click the comment link below.

Cheers to a productive and balanced week,


Jennifer Britton

Potentials Realized:

Monday, June 12, 2006

Women in Business Stats - Canada

Earlier this year I contributed to a resource publication put out by the York, South Simcoe Training and Adjustment Board, called Statrting Your Own Business: A Guide for Women in York Region. It is a very practical guide and resource collection for women thinking of, or beginning to, start their own business.

Did you know....
  • There are currently more than 800, 000 women entrepreneurs in Canada and this figure has been growing at an average annual rate of 3.3% since 1989
  • Ontario is home to 40% of all women-run small businesses in Canada
  • Over the past 15 years, the number of women-run businesses has risen 60% faster than those run by men
  • More than 82% of women small business owners say that if given the choice, they would definitely open their own business again

(Source: Starting Your Own Business: A Guide for Women in York Region, 2006)

As a business coach, business teacher and a female business owner I find these stats very interesting, and very reflective of our Canadian business climate. How many of you are female business owners?

To obtain your own copy of the publication, visit the York South Simcoe Training and Adjustment Board at

I will be announcing in the next few weeks our fall line-up of programs (teleseminars, retreats) geared for business owners, and also a couple of programs specifically geared to women in business. Please keep posted!


Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Why Small Businesses Fail

I came across a great article several months ago while I was teaching a Business Plan Development class and wanted to share it here on the blog. What do you think are the reasons why small businesses fail?

According to Deborah Barrie, MBA, of Action International, some of the top reasons why small business fail include:

  • Poor cash flow management
    Poor debt management
  • Overborrowing
  • Excessive reliance on a few key customers
  • Poor market research
  • Failure to innovate
  • Absence of a reliable hiring system and a lack of understanding of how to hire, retain and motivate the right people for the right job
  • Absence of a performance monitoring system
  • Failure to recognize their own strengths and weaknesses
  • Trying to do everything by themselves without external assistance

For Deborah's full article, please visit the link above. It's also interesting to note, that many of these factors which affect small business, also have significant impact on larger businesses. How many companies do you know that experience challenges because they don't have the right people in the right job, or lack a performance monitoring system? I work with several larger clients on a proactive basis to avoid these two pitfalls specifically, and have seen from experience how even a larger organization can be brought to their knees with problems in these two areas.

Looking at these danger zones Deborah has outlined, which ones capture your attention? Which factors have you steered clear of? Which ones do you need to flag as potential weak areas and perhaps get support on from others?

I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts, so please use the comment link below, or email me at

Jennifer Britton, MES, CPT, CPCC
Potentials Realized

Monday, March 13, 2006

The Importance of Vision

What's The Vision for Your Business ten years from now? As business owners and professionals, we often get so caught up in the day to day successes and challenges that we forget to look down the road at where we are going.

A clear business vision can be an important part of our business planning process, as well as a great support for us as we navigate the ups and downs.

Sit back for a moment and think about the following - In 2016, where will you be?
  • How much money will you be making?
  • What will you be doing?
  • Who are you serving?
  • What will you be known for?
  • What will be your most significant accomplishments?
  • What major life and business goals will have been achieved?

Some pretty big questions - Stretch yourself and write these down. Make sure you are writing them down - make it as clear as possible, and something that you can return to. There are lots more questions to consider in creating your busines vision. Start a file or a book for your business vision notes . The clearer you are, the easier it will be for you to achieve this vision - even when the path ahead looks murky.

In a couple of weeks, I will be starting my next two month teleseminar series for business owners - Developing Your Business Vision. If you are interested in finding out more or registering, please visit my website, or contact me toll free at 1-866-217-1960. We'll be meeting on Thursdays from 7-8 pm (EST) starting on March 29th for two months (meeting as a group during the 2nd and 4th weeks of the month). You'll also receive each month an individual business coaching session of 30 minutes (by phone).

Jennifer Britton, MES, CPCC, CPT

Potentials Realized

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Welcome to the Business Toolkit Blog

Welcome to the Business Toolkit blog from Potentials Realized. This blog is for business owners and professionals looking for information and resources to move their business forward.

My name is Jennifer Britton and I am a businesss owner, and former manager. I teach business studies at the College Level, and am a business coach. I support entrepreneurs and managers in creating the organizations and businesses that they want.

In the coming weeks and months, I'll be providing you with many tools and resources to add to your own business toolkit - ranging from developing a business plan, to Human Resources issues, marketing interviewing skills - to move your business to the level you wish.

Stay tuned! There is much more to come.

Jennifer Britton
Potentials Realized
Toll Free: 1-866-217-1960