Friday, December 5, 2014

Leadership Under Uncertainty

Being a leader is difficult in any circumstance.  However, becoming a successful leader in a constantly changing environment requires that you posses exceptional characteristics that flourish when times get tough. Change and uncertainty increase the challenges that a leader has to face, and it is not always easy. We live in a world that is constantly changing, where uncertainty is always certain.

We live in a world with an unclear and constantly changing set of rules, laws, and procedures, which affects the way people behave or run their businesses; potentially working under the effects of large economic swings, with lower growth, higher inflation or unemployment rates, a legal system that does not promote free trade or real competition, not to mention the difficult political situations that exists in several countries.

Today, leaders have to excel in uncertainty. These leaders have strong qualities and values, with an optimist’s approach to life. They have the characteristics of a strong performer, always working under pressure, having to demonstrate a sense of urgency.

In my best selling book ‘The Ultimate Success Guide’ I talk all about leadership in uncertainty.   In part, I talk about the 10 characteristics that I believe a great leader has to have in uncertain times.  These 10 characteristics are:

1. Commitment – The leader has a commitment to one’s people and co-workers in order to continuously demonstrate their presence with them in their own terrain, showing responsibility above all.

2. Understanding – A leader is capable and needs to listen, watch and understand all changing and uncertain circumstances, even when all of the information is not present. A leader is in touch with the people and understands their necessities by heart.

3. Connectivity - A leader is able to communicate effectively, creating alliances and relationships with all kinds of people. The leader is in touch with the people on a daily basis, in order to explain the ideas, tasks, responsibilities and challenges to others.

4. Vision - Leaders have a strong and profound vision.  They believe in their own objectives, but they are also willing to look at areas where other people see problems as opportunities. 

5. Values – A true leader believes that the best way to lead the people is by example.  They live by the true values and principles that guide them, maintaining their human and spiritual qualities.

6. Knowledge – A leader is constantly looking for knowledge.  They understand the needs of the society and following the path of continuous education and learning.

7. Creativity and Imagination – Leaders are always implementing creative actions, breaking the rules of traditional schemes. They anticipate the moment, armed with better ideas and solutions in their back pocket. 

8. Motivation – A leader continues to motivate themself as well as others. A leader inspires the ones that need guidance through speech and actions.

9. Competitive Attitude – A leader is armed with a positive attitude and with the motivation to achieve the impossible. They organize a better view of the future and unify their followers.

10. Take Action – Now knowing all these qualities that make a real leader, you need to take action; to decide, make opinions, to go ahead under real conditions, to be the best all the time, to bring out the best in all others, and to show the people what you are made of.  In some instances, you will need to deliver under the most difficult circumstances, and this is what will make you a complete and a true leader.

My father once summed it up excellently writing “leaders are always people who see beyond the moment, they are likely to excel in the midst of serious problems, creating a vision and motivating people to achieve it”.

Now "it is up to you to become that Great New Leader!"
Luis Vicente Garcia  

Friday, November 14, 2014

Be Positive, Be Successful!

For the next few days I am giving away my chapter "Be Positive, Be Successful" from the Best-selling book DARE TO SUCCEED.

The book was co-authored with Jack Canfield and other leading experts from around the world. It reached five #1 Best-selling lists on

Just simply follow the link below, give us your first and last name and your email and we will send it directly into your inbox.

Ifyou would like to obtain more information on our products and on the trainig and development we do for companies and their TEAMS, please write to

Now, start Being Positve to Be Successful.

Luis Vicente Garcia

Friday, October 31, 2014

The Foundation of your Business: Creating Customer Satisfaction

A very critical factor in today’s world is to understand how a successful business looks like. You might be selling pizza, tiles, be a dentist or having a much larger company. But regardless of the size, we all - and specially the business owners and the entrepreneurs who created the companies - need to be very clear as to which key and critical factors are necessary to make a business successful in today's economy.

When you build a building, you always start with the foundation. And what is the foundation? It is the basis on which you create your company. The purpose of a business is not to make a profit; the purpose of a business is to create and keep a customer. Brian Tracy, whom I have the privilege to work with at FocalPoint Coaching, mentioned that “of all the focus of everyone in the business, 80% has to be on customer creation, and the other 20% has to be on customer keeping.” And customer keeping is taking such good care of your customers after the sale that he or she will either be back for more business or better yet, refer your company to their associates.

When you understand that the purpose of a business is to create and keep a customer, you design the methods and ideas that will make your company grow. And then you get in front of another important question: what is the measure of a successful business? The answer is customer satisfaction. The customer uses the product or the service you sell, and is so happy that they decide to buy your product or service over and over again.

And how do we measure customer satisfaction? The answer is repeat business. The customer buys it and is so happy they buy it again and tell their friends, and then buy some more. Here's the final, ultimate- and this is breakthrough stuff- the ultimate of successful business is that customers recommend you enthusiastically to others and say, "You've got to buy this product or service like I did."

In our comany we believe that you can transform your customers into your best salespeople, your advocates. The key to all of this - the foundation- is creating a great product or service that makes people happy, that causes them to buy again and causes them to enthusiastically tell their friends, and that has to be the central focal purpose of everything you do in business.

If you would like to get more information on how we can help you improve your sales team and improve your customer satisfaction, you can contact us at .

Keep on being successful!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Start Early on Entrepreneurship!

Entrepreneurship is about daring, taking chances, not knowing where you are going and yet, taking action. Entrepreneurship is about movement, using action verbs, about implementing strategies to fulfill your dreams. I say fulfill as you will reach them along the way and then you, the entrepreneur, will be looking for new ways to improve your company, your team, your performance; in the simplest way, to improve yourself.

As a business performance consultant I meet regularly with business owners and entrepreneurs alike. And yes, there is a big difference in their definition. While business owners most times manage their companies, entrepreneurs look for ways to innovate, create and constantly improve. You may agree or disagree with me on this definition, but put some thought into it. Most successful entrepreneurs I have interviewed have mainly one regret, not having started earlier. However, the good thing I tell them is that they have started already. And the only way you will succeed in life and in business is if you put your heart and soul into making your company, your enterprise, successful.

This is what entrepreneurs do every single day. They start with a dream and then go working out of their way to see it become a reality.

As the title of this short article suggests, you need to start early.  And then start again and again until you get it right and do it right. Taking the first step gets you going and moves you in a direction. It may not be the right one; you might have to change courses from time to time; so you have to set your mind on your goals. Developing your goals and creating the strategies to implement them is of crucial importance.

So start early. Your idea does not have to be perfect; nor does your plan (and of course you do need a plan). But until you start you will never know what you will need to change, to adapt, to modify. Simply put, start and start early so that you can become the entrepreneur you have in you.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Q4 Starts Today!

Dear Friends,

This has been a very fast paced year, or at least it seems so. Have you set aside a time to review your plan and focus on what matters most? Have you celebrated the many accomplishments you have had during the year? Are you still working on those goals you set out to achieve?

If the answers to all of these questions were ‘YES’, well, congratulations. If you had a ‘no’ among these answers, the good news is that you still have time:

·         Time to redefine and adjust your goals: Always do something that gets you closer to your goal. Remember that your strategy remains the same, but you need to be flexible on your goals (if your goal is too big, then create sub-goals);

·         Time to focus on your plan: what have you achieved so far in 2014? Are you working on your clients the way you should be nurturing and monitoring them? Remember that usually Q4 is the best quarter of the year;

·         Time to celebrate: regardless of the importance of your achievements, celebrate them. If you have had many achievements, celebrate even more. And if you have not done so, plan a big end-year celebration where you can recognize your achievements and those of your team members who helped in achieving them. Remember: Teams are comprised of people that work and perform better when working together.

New research has indicated that it is very important to share your stories, to work in your brand, to focus on your marketing, and to make your team more productive while working together. In working with companies develop their strategic plan we have realized that to tap into the full potential of all of your employees, you need to share your Q4 Plan with more than just a few people at the top. Whether you schedule a company meeting and explain it or post the plan around your company, do whatever is most effective to make sure everyone clearly understands their role in making Q4 a success.’

Work on your company, on your team, on your goals and create your plan to a really great Q4. To learn how we can help you and your company achieve your goals while working on your strategies and improving your performance, please contact us at or visit our web page  

“You cannot expect to achieve new goals or move beyond your present circumstances unless you change.” - Les Brown

To your Success,
Luis Vicente

Friday, August 1, 2014

Reviewing your Strategies for Achieving your GOALS.

It's August 1st.

How far are you in achieving your GOALS for the year?

The following is a very simple four step system that will help you in getting your work ready for the next fine months:

1. Review your key 7-month key performance and key results indicators;

2. Understand where you are at today according to your Plan and adjust accordingly;

3. Implement the new Strategies you think are necessary to achieve your Plans;

4. Implement all of these changes so that you and your TEAM are able to 'Reach your GOALS' by the end of the year.

And start TODAY!

Luis Vicente Garcia

Monday, July 14, 2014

Systems and processes in Franchising

As we continue to embark on a learning experience about franchising, I would like to ask you a question: How many franchising companies do you know? They may be a fast-casual restaurant, a pharmacy, a hotel chain, a rental car agency, a flower shop, a barber, an ice cream parlor or so many others you cannot even imagine. Almost 90 industries use the Business Franchising Model in order to grow their network. So now go out and start thinking on the places you visit, the shops and restaurants you go and see if you can figure out which of those are franchising establishments.

How can you achieve fast and steady growth and guarantee that it is all done in the same way? The answer is very simple: it is all a system, a series of processes and programs the franchisee has to follow, all very well documented in the different kinds of operational manuals all franchising systems (small or large) have. And the franchisee follows a strict training process that allows the new owner (he or she most times call themselves entrepreneurs) to perform at the level the franchisor (the owner of the franchise) requires.

Why? Very simply because you, the customer, will expect to buy the same hamburger, sandwich, pizza every where they go  in the world; you would expect to receive the same level of quality service from your rental car agency or your hotel also anywhere. And franchising developed a system in which you can be certain of getting those every time you go and visit one of these stores. This is why it is a system, a process, that when done well, it will allow you to grow and constantly improve your business.

And then you can start doing your own research. Which places do I go frequently to shop, dine, or use during my travels? It is actually amazing to realize that some of the largest service companies in the world operate through franchising. Hotels, car rentals, full service or fast food restaurants; you name it. They are mostly franchising units that are required to operate under a series of standards and quality measures so that you, the customer will (almost) always receive the same (or similar) product, with the same quality and with the same level of service.

Understand that it s all a system and processes, and when followed, they will produce the best results.

Please visit in case you are interested in books and programs that would improve your results and performance, and if you wish to develop your skills in different managerial areas.


Monday, June 30, 2014

Managerial Lessons from the World Cup

A big portion of the world’s population if following the world’s most important and international event: the 2014 FIFA Brazil World Cup. For those of us who follow soccer (of football as it is known in Europe and elsewhere besides North America), this amazing world sports event has just finished its first round of elimination games. After two years of qualifying round, the best 32 teams met, with the top 16 going on to the second round. And it is an interesting time to reflect on some important issues not only about sports but also on management itself. Some issues would have to deal with the previous preparations that have to be carried out to infrastructure, roads, security and many other issues that need to be ready for the arrival of millions of visitors and tourists into the host country, so that their experience is the best one possible. Other issues would have to do with what it means to be the host country of such an important global event. However, I also believe that there are important lessons in various management topics that would be appropriate to point out.

For fans - and not so fond fans - of international soccer, a World Cup has a number of important features. First brings together the best players from the best teams in the world; secondly, this is an event both very important and highly relevant to the host country; thirdly no other sporting event brings together so many viewers worldwide. According to a statement from FIFA, the 2014 Brazil World Cup has already broken box office records in worldwide television and on mobile devices because for the first time in history, people are watching the games on their phones or tablets. Even in the US, it was estimated by ESPN that 24.7 million viewers watched the US-Portugal game, plus other 5 million estimated viewers watched it online (

While we are starting the second round and probably still missing the most important part of this world cup, in the knockout round we have seen some very interesting aspects that relate very well to some managerial areas:

1. Better teams have arrived. Most incoming teams are - usually - those who are better prepared and have better players; however, this time we have seen teams that have worked hard and dedicated beyond what they have done in other World Cups. Thus we see, for example, that the Costa Rican Team was the first that gathered to prepare, study techniques, train as a team and be ready for what was been his best performance in history, during the first elimination round.

2. We all need inspiration. No matter who is the host, the favorite, or the better prepared team, inspiration always helps. It was very exciting to see in their inaugural game, how the Brazilian team was motivated and inspired by all the fans who were in the stadium singing their National Anthem, a Capella, once the music stopped. The excitement and energy level were so high at that time in the inaugural game that it was reflected in the face of both the fans and the players themselves and this is something to appreciate. You can feel that inspiration by watching the following video:  

3. We must always develop new talent. While this is something we always know we do not on it all the time. Talent must be developed continuously; and this involves not only the technical areas, on effort, preparation, strength and resistance, but also the mental preparation for such an important competition. Additionally we all must always be on the lookout for new talent. For this World Cup we are seeing new faces, such as: Sayouba, from the Ivory Coast team; Pulido from Mexico; James from Colombia and Neymar, from the Brazilian team. Of course we always have the experienced players and new players. We also see that there are figures that stand out for the preparation they have had, for the great effort they have made or the skills they have to do things better than others. And I do not want to get into a discussion of which player is better or has the best qualities, but would simply like to mention that both Neymar and James are playing in their first World Cup, being considered already as among the best players in the world. So how do you get two 22 year old new talented and new members of your world cup teams?  Always be on the lookout for new and better talent to help your team reach their goals.

4. We must prepare for the unexpected. In our daily life, people and businesses have emergencies or urgent situations. In a professional, business or sports team, things happen that do not allow you to grow, expand, train or plan. During the first round of this world cup we saw the unexpected and some, where not ready to see it. For example, we saw how Costa Rica, to which I referred earlier, finished first in the group where the other three teams always been considered among the best teams in the world; secondly we saw that Spain, the reigning champion, did not go past the first round; and there were games where the number of goals against the favorites went beyond what is acceptable. These are situations that happen to us daily, with our teams or how we handle some situations. However, what we have to do is always to focus on what's important and be prepared to handle the urgent and unexpected.

5. We need new leaders. Every day we need our leaders tell us the way to go. Of course we come to the image of Nelson Mandela who was tough, and had the knowledge and courage to manage and change the destiny of a nation. For some companies its leader is not its president/CEO; when working with teams, there is always one leader that stands out and who might not been appointed as such. The important thing is to allow the new leader to emerge and develop. What caught my attention was reading headline news that appeared during the classification of Mexico that said things like "…Guillermo Ochoa is the goalkeeper that Mexico does not need." For us who watched the first games of the Mexican tem viewed a different reality. So these past few days I read an article that mentioned that "Guillermo Ochoa is Mexico’s new Hero." We know things change; and new heroes and leaders emerge, grow, evolve and are maximized at the times most needed. This is why we should not be surprised to continue to see the emergence of new leaders and new heroes who will carry their teams into new places and new heights.

Still missing the most important part of this World Cup and the definition of the new champion, we might expect that the more prepared team and with the best talent, will have new heroes and leaders, who will collectively strive and work with the rest of their team members to become the new world champion. The important thing is always to learn the lessons that we experience, understand that we have to adapt and be flexible to achieve these targets, and that in one way or another, we should be striving every day more to create and sustain better teams that will propel us to have a better company.

Luis Vicente Garcia is a business Consultant, a FocalPoint Business Coach, a Best-selling Author and an International Speaker. He helps businesses and business owners reach higher levels of performance. You can follow Luis at @lvgarciag and contact him at  

Monday, June 9, 2014

Understanding Franchising

We all have had lunch, rented cars, sent parcels, ironing shirts or staying at a place that with or without us knowing it, are franchised companies.  These are commercial operations that are managed under what is called a business franchising model.

Franchising today is a very important way of doing business, both in North America and most other parts of the world. As entrepreneurs, we all have options, to start our own business, to buy a business that has been running for a few years or to buy a franchise and become a member of the franchising community. This is why I dedicate this week's article on franchising.

There are different definitions of the term "franchise", although most refer to a close relationship between two parties, in which one of them gives the other the right to use an asset, be it a brand or right to sell certain products or services, under the name or the business format of the franchisor.

The main features that are identified as important part of a franchise are, among others, the following:

  •        The franchisor entity (the one with the idea, brand or business concept);
  •        The franchisee (who takes on this idea, brand or concept for expansion);
  •       The franchise contract (which indicates each and every one of the responsibilities, terms and conditions of the relationship between these parts);
  •         The different operational manuals that cover different aspects of the franchise, such as issues relating to the brand, image, operations and finances, as well as having the franchise agreement.

Franchising has been defined as a system of cooperation between different companies linked by a contract under which one of them, the franchising company, delivers to others, the franchisee , the right of using a brand and / or a commercial formula embodied in a distinctive signs, assuring at the same time technical support and regular services needed to facilitate such exploitation.

A key aspect in franchising is that the franchisor will license the use of its products, brands and services in exchange for certain fees, that would range from the franchising fee that is paid in advance, a monthly payment for royalties or retainers and certain other fees to cover marketing, administration, operation performance and other issues. As each franchising company ad business model is different, there are many key aspects to learn and understand when considering purchasing a franchise. There are many other aspects governing a franchise that relate to legal, business, trade, and there are laws and regulations that have been created in many countries, in an effort to control, regulate and support the growth and rise of franchising companies.

Ell entrepreneurs start with a dream, which turns into ideas; and those that take the ideas into action succeed most of the time. As a friend and colleague of mine John Whitt wrote me recently: “
Daydreamer and doers = awesome combo.

The main purpose of franchising is to continue promoting the operations and management of a company, which leads to a successful business for new and existing entrepreneurs. To successfully franchise a business, the franchisor must meet a number of prerequisites or criteria, including:
  1.          A recognized Brand;
  2.          A different and innovative franchising concept;
  3.          That the company has managed to prove itself as a successful and growing company;
  4.          A committed management team.

And there are specific criteria the potential franchisee must also meet. To create a successful franchising system, all parties need to work towards a common goal. Results today show that there are many ways for growth and entrepreneurship.

Here’s to your success!

(1) Excerpt from the book “Motivando al Futuro Franquiciado”, Luis Vicente Garcia. November 2011

Luis Vicente García is Management Consultant, a Certified FocalPoint Coach, a Brian Tracy International Trainer, best-selling Author and an International Speaker.


Thursday, May 22, 2014

Disney is revolutionizing Audio-Animatronics, Again!

Some people may have been fortunate enough to see the first animatronics ever created when Walt Disney himself was at the 1964 world's fair in New York City. I was very little, but I remember my parents talking about visiting and enjoying it. And what an impact it had in the future of many different aspects, not only in animatronics but also in park attractions, robotics, electronics and many other areas.

I have been able to read about the innovative part of the Walt Disney Company and in one of my trips to EPCOT Center in 2011, I was invited to a behind the scenes tour at the American Pavilion at the very same moment when one of the shows depicting important people in US history brought them alive. It was audio-animatronics seen from below the surface, looking at their every movement, motion and facial expression. For me, it was another wonderful experience during my visit to a Disney Park. Over the years we have seen the many improvements at the many attractions such as It's A Small World, The Hall of the Presidents or The Pirates of the Caribbean. We even saw Jack Sparrow having a better positioning after the hit movies Pirates of the Caribbean. It is a kind of a Celebrity audio-animatronics Branding for Jack Sparrow, as my friends at the DNA agency would refer to it.

Well, Disney is doing it again. It is not just the more real leg or better facial expressions; it is making the whole attraction look more real. A recent article about the new ride at the Magic Kingdom, the Seven Dwarf's Mine Train attraction, mentioned that it will feature the original seven Snow White dwarfs, and showing them in a more realistic and better way. Disney "imagineers" as they are known, constantly use new ideas and improvements in the key components that make each individual part of the animatronic figure. The article by Sarah Sekula (Heigh-ho, heigh-ho! It's off to Orlando they go!, USA Today, May 2, 2014, LIFE section, page 3D), indicated that "... it features toe-tapping new music, a first of its kind ride system and audio-animatronics that would make Walt proud." Year after year these audio-animatronic figures show improvements, such as better facial expressions, new movements and in this case they are using "the best and most advanced animatronics ever created by imagineers."

Walt Disney was always taking care of the details and we should all be doing the same in both, our personal and professional lives. We lead by what we do, we motivate our team with our example, and we inspire others while doing an excellent job every single day. And we all need to innovate. This is what I want you to take out of this article: you and I, we all need to innovate constantly and continuously. It is the only way by which we make ourselves and our companies competitive in an ever more complex business environment, in every corner of the world. As consumers become more demanding, with little time and many more options to choose from, we need to remind them that we are here for them. It does not matter which product we sell or which service we provide, as long as we keep innovating and improving.

This new ride will open next spring; but please realize that we are all open for business today and our businesses and companies need to grow and get better. So I urge you to take action, innovate, improve, grow, plan and set your strategies to always keep the details working in order to surprise your customers and clients in new and more innovative ways.

Luis Vicente Garcia is a Business Consultant, a Business Performance Coach with FocalPoint Coaching, and a Trainer with Brian Tracy International, who helps entrepreneurs reach their goals faster and improve their performance.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Understanding Business Coaching

For centuries, people have sought some kind of help or advice from others who may know more on certain subjects, understand different some important issues or that may have a different perspective. Since the Renaissance, to the French monarchy, to the English literary scholars, to the inventors in new world, they all sought the advice and guidance of monks, cardinals, other scholars, philosophers, or scientists, when they wanted to learn about new topics or find out new ways of doing and learning things.

Today we see many people who use the figure of a "coach" when they want to improve in some area or aspect of their physical, mental, or spiritual side, or need to obtain knowledge on issues related to wellness, wealth or financial management, new knowledge, learn about management issues or embark in a process of personal development and continuous improvement. Great leaders, athletes, business owners and other people seek advice and support from a coach in each of the areas in which they need or believe that they need to improve. The coaching field is very wide, and it goes from subjects such as physical or spiritual well-being, to general consulting, to today’s business coaching. As you may know, there are different methods and different specialties where the theme of “coaching" is being used and has been used for many years. In 2003, in an article published by the Washington Post, the coaching process was defined as “a process that does not look back, but it is for those who want high performance enhance your life in some way" (The Washington Post, June 2003).

Not everyone needs a coach and not all people can become one; it requires - as most things do – work and dedication on both sides, the coach and the person that is being coached. To achieve growth in an effective way, we all have to focus on the needs of the potential client and what the coach can offer at a certain time. Business Coaching is a new and growing industry, it is evolving; as such, it is continuing to develop and in most cases it will focus in areas that are really of interest to the potential client and where we are always looking to a relationship between a coach and client that add value.

Just 10 or 15 years ago, companies hired the services of a coach to correct behavioral issues at the senior levels of organizations. That has changed and coaching has been guiding the development of the skills and capabilities of people and individuals who have a high development potential. So as coaches, we need to look to develop the potential of all the clients (athletes, authors, speakers, business owners and entrepreneurs) that we have. The process of choosing a coach should not be a complicated one, but it must be done with care and caution; and needs always to be focused on the real needs of the company or person that is looking to be guided.

Coaching sometimes has been confused with the work of a consultant, a practice that has been working for many years. However, a coach’s work is different from what a consultant does, as the coach guides the person and usually will work to improve productivity and efficiency. A saying about coaches mentions: ‘a manager manages, a leader inspires, a coach walks on the side of the leader, accompanying him’.  You see it very commonly in athletes who have coaches for a variety of needs. For example, top athletes or actors have a nutrition coach, as well as coaches on performance, improving techniques and sometimes even one that keeps them motivated and with a positive attitude; athletes, teams, business, and many other losses from time to time. And we learn from those experiences, not only when we gain or do things the planned and the correct way. So it is a constant learning process.

Coaching has worked for many people. Do not wait until it is late in the game, or in the life of your business or in your personal development. Work with a coach: a coach will guide you at the moment you need them most, even without realizing it. Top performers have their own professional coaches to keep improving. Are you next?

Luis Vicente Garcia
Business Coach and entrepreneur, Best-selling Author and International Speaker.