Monthly Archives: January 2012

Nischala’s Blog-o-Rendezvous with JESSIE PAUL

The first featured STAR in my Blog-o-Rendezvous series is JESSIE PAUL… Guess most of you know or have heard of JESSIE, but if you’ve not here’s a short Bio..

ABOUT JESSIE

CEO – Paul Writer, Author – No Money Marketing, former CMO – Wipro, former Global Brand Manager – Infosys

Today (27 Jan 2012), Paul Writer turns 2! Stop by at her web-site @ http://paulwriter.com/ or tweet her @Jessie_paul  to drop in your Congratulations…

THE RENDEZVOUS

I had an opportunity to discuss with Jessie Paul about her cross-over from the corporate world to entrepreneurship. In this post I will share with you the key highlights of our discussion…

Nischala: Hey Jessie… Good Morning… Happy New Year! And Congratulation’s on the completion of 2 years at Paul Writer . My first question is how has this shift been – from the corporate world to your own venture?

Jessie: It’s so much more fun. A lot of people scared me about the risks of being an entrepreneur.  While definitely I’ve had my share of ups and downs – collections, cash-flow etc. – the upside is significant.

Nischala:  Great to hear that… So after 15 years in the Indian IT industry, and 2 years as an entrepreneur what would you say are the key benefits of being on your own?

Jessie:  It’s great to be on your own.  It gives me a lot more opportunity and flexibility to define the kind of work to do and the kind of clients that we service. Most importantly, it gives me complete control on my work, plan and priorities.  I’ve also been able to meet and interact with a wide, diverse range of people, both face to face and through social media – I feel that I’m constantly learning in this role.

 Nischala: Did you plan the transition? How long did it take you?

Jessie: I was mulling it over for around 3 years before taking the plunge.  The key criteria were that it had to match the 3Ps – Passion, Perfection and Profitability. I had to be clear about what services I can offer, the business model, my future plans and the financial viability. So there are many aspects. I wrote a book, No Money Marketing, which I felt would help create a thought leadership identity.  Over time I want people to view me as Jessie Paul, marketer, not ex-CMO Wipro or ex-Infosys Brand Manager

Nischala: Any specific highlights on the personal level?

Jessie: It gives me the flexibility to balance work and life out of work. And also possibly invest my time in things that are important to me.  If you look at the average split of time for an employee in an IT organization, it would look something like 25 – 30% of your work time goes over non-essential e-mails, committee meetings, form filling and administrative work like leave approvals. And commute can take anywhere between 2- 3 hours in a day… So in effect, you really work for 6 – 8 hours, though you are out of your home for 12 hours…. If you reduce the commute time, that’s a big bonus – So living close to your work place is a definite plus. And if you can find a way to reduce your non-essential overheads, that’s another big PLUS!

Nischala: Are you spotting any trends on women taking the plunge into entrepreneurship – specifically in terms of changes at / after a particular phase of life like say having kids, etc.

Jessie: See there 2 dimensions – One is women in the corporate world and one is women in the work force. What I am seeing is that women continue to be part of the work force, but not part of the corporate world by opting to be on their own – either through free-lancing or consulting or entrepreneurship. For e.g.: We’re seeing a lot of trend of women free-lancing in areas like Marketing, Communication, etc. Also, with the emergence of digital communications, this is a viable model.

The point is many women assume the primary responsibility of raising a child and managing domestic responsibilities. I don’t agree that this should be the default, but it is the case for many women, either by inclination or societal pressure.  So flexibility becomes important to enable them to juggle their professional and personal lives. Not sure if you’ve heard, but there’s also a site called www.fleximoms.com which was conceptualized to enable women find jobs which are more suited to their personal context and also enable women to re-enter the workforce if they were on a hiatus from work.

Nischala: That’s interesting. Any other drivers that women are looking at?

Jessie: There is research to show that working women are not just looking for money from their work and but seek to view their work as contribution to a bigger picture either for the organization or the world at large. They have other criteria for the choice and selection of the kind of work they would like to do and also the kind of employers they will work for.

This is why a lot of women find immense satisfaction in working for the social sector.  Another important dimension is that women like to see a direct and positive impact of their work and contributions – and in large organizations, it’s sometimes hard to see and gauge this impact, hence entrepreneurship becomes an attractive option.

Nischala: Any advice that you’d like to share with anyone who wants to start off on their own?

Jessie: If you are starting off on your own, you need to first be mentally prepared for the changes at many levels.

Small things like where and how you will work from. Like in my case, my last day in Wipro was 8 Jan 2010 and I walked into my new office on 11 Jan 2010. So I still had an office space, just that the location was different. The continuity was important for me – I was afraid that if I started hanging around the house sheer inertia would keep me there.   I do not have the ability to compartmentalize which is a must to work from home.  Also I felt clients view “working from home” as not being a serious option.

The reality is that there are benefits in being associated with large organizations.  Things like a bank loan, health insurance are much simpler and easier to get if you are part of a large organization. If you are with a start-up, these things are a lot more difficult.

Also, you need to have a realistic assessment of whether you  can stand on your own feet, what your key skills are, what services you can offer and how scalable is your model. Like in my case the services are based primarily on expertise in the industry which is based on my experience and personal brand – So the risk is significantly lower. Also, the fact that I do have a good professional network further strengthens my chances of success.

Nischala: Thanks Jessie for sharing insights from your personal journey.  I am sure a lot of people will benefit from this.

Jessie: Cheers! Have a Good Day!

How did you like this rendezvous?

Leave a comment to let us know

The 5 Cherished Lessons from 18 Guest Posts and 2179+ Tweets / Shares

Want to become a star by Guest Posting?

Over the last few months, I have posted as a guest blogger on several sites on a variety of topics. In terms of base data, I have posted 18 guest posts on 6 blogs. In terms of response, there have been 169+ comments and 2179+ Tweets / Shares (as of 24 Jan 2012).

The master list is below:

 

Site Topic of the Post Number of Tweets / Shares (as on 24 Jan 2012) Number of Comments (as on 24 Jan 2012)
ProBlogger.com Why you should wear the 6 Thinking Hats on your blog? 812 45
12Most.com 12 Most Vital Things To Do After Turning 30 68 2
  12 Most Vital Facets of a Broker 79 4
  12 Most Noteworthy Aspects of Cooking 41 4
  12 Most Tornadic Ways in which the Weather Affects your Life 88 2
  12 Most Genuine Ways to Support a Cause 108 5
  12 Most Mesmerizing Mantras on how to publish 321 blogs in 321 days 108 28
  12 Most Wonderful Moments in the first year of Motherhood 298 13
  12 Most Compelling Reasons for you to write 215 29
FamousBloggers Focus on Diversity in your blog 87 11
The Change Blog 12 Choices To Transform your life 263 24
PaulWriter 9 Must-Have’s for a Senior Marketing Executive 4 0
  Success of a Blog 1 0
  Social Media Legacy 1 0
  Who Rules Social Media? – Content Creators or Content Consumers 1 0
  Marketing at Surajkund Crafts Mela 1 0
  How to create your online personal brand? 1 0
MindBlogs To RN 3 2

NOTE – Above data is based primarily on the statistics published on the web-sites and does not include Re-Tweets, Forwards, etc. In reality, the number of Tweets / Shares is significantly higher than the numbers quoted above.

I did a further analysis of each of these sites as listed below:

Site Run by Focus of the Blog Twitter Profile Number of Twitter Followers (as on 18 Jan 2012) 
ProBlogger.com Darren Rowse Blogging @ProBlogger 153504
12Most.com Paul Biedermann & Peggy Fitzpatrick Business, Media,Lifestyle @12Most 5275
FamousBloggers Hesham Zebida Blogging, Making Money Online Tips @FamousBloggers 16498
The Change Blog Peter Clemens Positive Change in Life @PeterClemens 2474
PaulWriter Jessie Paul Marketing @paulwriter , 414
@jessie_paul 4723
MindBlogs Nirmala Govindarajan, Zahid H Javali & Christina Daniels Diverse @mindblogs 49

 As you can observe by the data, I have posted on

A diverse set of blogs on
A diverse set of topics and
Received a diverse set of responses…
What’s common is this - I have put my mind, heart, sweat and soul into each of them & each of these posts is dear to ME for many different reasons

In this post, I will share the 5 Most Valuable Learning’s from these Guest Posting experiences:

1) CONTENT is the KING
You must have heard of the adage that content is king. From my personal experience, I can vouch for this! It’s TRUE. If you write quality content, you will eventually find your way to the RIGHT blogs and in turn to the RIGHT readers (& of course over a period of time)

The 4 things that can be attributed to Quality Content are:
i) Blog Title – A Well-Thought out Blog Title definitely catches reader attention
ii) Originality in Expression – And here’s where your creativity and literary skills will make the difference
iii) Honesty in Articulation – I use the word honesty because even if it is a simple message which people have read several times before, if you are honest in the way you articulate, it will be well received. And if it’s based on your personal experience, then the level of content integrity is definitely HIGH!
iv) Language (English) Accuracy – And this includes the right spelling, right grammar, right punctuations and right vocabulary!
Novelty in the subject and content is a definite bonus, but NOT a Must-Have

2) Choose the RIGHT BLOG to PUBLISH your Guest Post
You have great content. But it is of limited value if it does not reach the RIGHT EYES. So once you have written a post, pause and ask yourself “What is the target reader profile that should read this post?”

Once you have answered this question to yourself, follow it up with a thorough research and analysis on the various sites that you can explore for guest posting. Zero-in of the BEST CHOICE and then contact the site owners with a request to review your post for publication on their site. Be open to their suggestions and feedback, and make the changes. Simply because they have the best understanding of their target readers!

3) The BLOG MARKETING is the real DIFFERENTIATOR!!!
You have written great content. You guest post if finally published on a blog of your choice. But what is that missing link between the posts which get maximum readership and those which don’t really get there. It’s the MARKETING strategy!

If you have a guest post on a blog, then the blog / site owners usually do promote your post through multiple channels. For e.g.: Their own personal Twitter handles, The Twitter handles of their site / blog (in case it exists). In addition, you should ensure that you do market your own guest post using a combination of channels like mail, FaceBook Status, Twitter, Blog, Personal Chat, face-to-face discussions with family and friends, etc.

Personally, the most critical learning for me is that you should continue to market your posts on a periodic basis. Most bloggers aggressively market their posts only when they go live and then don’t really follow it up with any additional marketing. Don’t assume that your target readers would have read your post the first time you share it. Do invest in planning and implementing a blog marketing strategy for your post over a period of time – This is critical to reach a larger reader base

4) ONE Tweet / ReTweet (RT) has the potential to CREATE a DYNAMO EFFECT
My post 12 Most Wonderful Moments in the First Year of Motherhood was RT by Alyssa Milano (Yes! The Hollywood actress and former singer) & Jure Klepic (who was represented in Forbes’ Top 10 Influencers in Social Media) and it went viral after that.

The truth is this – If your post is RT by a real-world / cyber-world celebrity, then the readers who will even eye your content goes up by exponentially.  And you can increase your chance of being RT by a celebrity by writing superior quality content and focus on a well-thought out marketing strategy.

5) The BRAND Image of the BLOG makes all the DIFFERENCE
I’ve realized that every blog has a brand image – Which is determined by
i) The individuals and teams who run the blog (For e.g.: Kudos to Paul Biedermann & Peggy Fitzpatrick for the positivity, energy, vibrancy and TRUE community spirit they foster at 12Most.com),
ii) The frequency, consistency and quality of content posted on the site and
iii) The strategy to engage, nurture and build the reader & writer community

Based on the Brand image of a blog, it attracts a different set of reader base and retains a sub-set of one-time readers as loyal followers. And the interest, reactions and response that any guest post receives on this site is reflective partially of the brand image of the blog!!

Ending Words of Wisdom

Content is KING, Social Media is the NEW QUEEN
And together they RULE the online world!!!

So, here are your options:
1) Be the KING – By generating GREAT content! AND
2) Befriend the QUEEN – By understanding and leveraging the power of Social Media OR
3) Be prepared to let the KING and QUEEN rule you’re WORLD!
Which one will you pick?

SPECIAL REQUEST TO YOU
I would be HAPPY if you  Tweeted / Shared / Forward in your network to spread this message…
I would be HONORED if you took a moment to leave a comment…

On that note, Happy Blogging!!!

My 2012 Series: Nischala’s Blog-o-Rendezvous

It’s the start of a new year – 2012. And so in the New Year spirit, I decided to launch a new series on this blog.

What’s the Name?
Nischala’s Blog-o-Rendezvous

What’s the Aim?
To present different voices and life stories. While the people I will be writing about will be from different walks of life, have diverse life stories, struggles and successes – What I will be looking for is a message, a key take-away and an inspiration you can draw from

What’s the Process?
I will have a one-o-one confab with the featured star!

What’s the Plan?
The plan is to have at least one interview per month

Who are the People?
Well… Check this space for the next post..

If you have any suggestions on whom I can / should interview, leave a comment…

Gartner – Key 2012 Predictions

The top industry predictions include:
» By 2016, most consumers in mature markets will consider in-vehicle Web access a key criterion in their automobile purchase.
» By 2014, major national defaults in Europe will lead to the collapse of more than one-third of European banks.
» By 2015, new, external social Web and cloud-based services will generate 25 percent of consumer-driven banking products and services.
» By 2013, iPad penetration among pharma sales reps will reach 85 percent, then shift to applications that improve delivery and interaction tracking.
» By 2016, the iPad will gain less than 50 percent of the K-12 market as CIOs favor devices that are deployed more readily.
» By 2015, 30 percent of smart grid projects will leverage cloud services to address big data from converging technologies.
» By 2015, 20 percent of integrated delivery systems will be investing in new healthcare-targeted customer relationship management (CRM) systems.
» By 2014, 30 percent of U.S. private healthcare payers will acquire providers, forcing integration of application suites as delivery and finance merge.
» By year-end 2014, at least one social network provider will become an insurance sales channel.
» By 2016, more than 5 percent of searches will be integrated using mobile devices’ video/audio sensors instead of typed or spoken phrases.
» Through 2015, 80 percent of multichannel implementations will fail because retailers will retain channel- and product-centric strategies.
» By 2013, government financial sustainability will join cost containment as the top driver and constraint for government IT spending.
» By 2015, context-aware promotions will comprise 10 percent of convenience item promotional activity among consumer goods manufacturers in developed markets.
» Until 2015, ineffective IT/OT management will risk serious failures in more than 50 percent of enterprises, and critical failures in asset-dependent ones.
» By 2014, the five largest PLM software providers will make social networking an integral part of their solution

Src: http://www.techjournalsouth.com/2012/01/gartner-predictions-say-it-faces-challenges-to-business-models/

List of BPM Blogs

A ready reference of BPM Blogs

ANALYST BLOGS
Jim Sinur (Gartner)
Clay Richardson (Forrester)
Jim Sinur (Gartner)
Connie Moore (Forrester)
Elise Olding (Gartner)
Janelle Hill (Gartner)

PRODUCT VENDOR BLOGS
Casewise
Pega
Singularity
MetaStorm
Oracle

OTHERS
Steve towers (BPGroup)
Adam Deane
Process Maker Blog
List of BPM blogs

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