I think I found a new hobby...

I have been doing such an awesome job with these http://www.foodnetwork.com/ recipes! I'm really starting to get excited. The kids are loving the food and so is my husband. Emeril is certainly becoming one of my favorite chefs and his recipes are really really easy to follow. My latest dish was Jambalaya Pasta with Penne, Chicken and Shrimp (I left out the sausage and I did shrimp on the side for me b/c my husband doesn't eat seafood and I don't eat chicken) www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/jambalaya-pasta-with-penne-chicken-shrimp-and-andouille-recipe/index.html It all worked out really good. I was shocked at how good the sauce was. OMG I can make that sauce all day and eat it on almost anything. I'm actually finding that following these recipes is almost like stress relief. I think it's because when I'm following the recipe step by step and preparing all of the ingredients I don't really have time to think about anything else. I'm totally focused on making a really good meal. Ahh maybe that's weird but I think it's true for me. Oh and by the way I made meatloaf for the first time ever (another Emeril Lagasse recipe) it was really good from what I heard since I don't eat meat lol. I actually bought some leftovers into the office today so that my dad could try it and he loved it. There was only one thing that I noticed. I think I should have let it cook just a tiny bit longer to that the meat could set really good in the middle. It was so juicy with all the flavors and stuff but it could have stood a little longer. Other than that, all went well. We had mixed vegetables and garlic mashed potatoes with it. yum!! www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/emerils-most-kicked-up-meatloaf-ever-recipe/index.html In other news, it's been pretty busy around the office as we approach years end. I've been really praying and asking God to give me the strategy that our business needs in order to get out of the vicious cycle that comes with customers paying sloooooooooow! I already know that some really tough decisions will have to be made and I'm totally with it if it will help the business. I certainly realize that part of being an entrepreneur or small business owner is that you have to be ready, willing, and able to make adjustments when necessary. Some adjustments are subtle but others may be pretty drastic. At the end of the day my faith is not in my ability but my faith is in God and he's able!!! I will do like the scripture says "trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding, acknowledge the Lord in all your ways and he will direct your path". I'm encouraged!!!!

It worked!

Today turned out to be a pretty good one. I've been brainstorming business strategies for the upcoming year all week long. I'm really trying to take my role as CEO to another level in 2011 and today I found the waiting room of the car dealership to be a great place to get the creative juices flowing (while waiting for an oil change and inspection). It's very important to me that our company have a financially sound, well planned, successful year. At the same time it is going to be extremely important that our managerial staff put all differences aside and come together in an effort to take our family business to the next level. There are so many different dynamics when working with family ( I don't recommend it at all) it can be a blessing or a curse and many times it can feel like a combination of both. Like everything else in life, it has its advantages but it also has its disadvantages. It can be difficult getting family to give the same performance and have the same work habits as they would have if they were working with someone else. There's like an unspoken entitlement feeling in the air at times or maybe it's just me.... I don't think anyone understands how difficult my position really is on sooooo many levels... Anyhow, on to personal news, Yes. The blackened Tilapia recipe last night was a hit!!! My husband loved it, the kids actually asked for seconds and more importantly I was able to enjoy the same meal as the rest of the family. I've decided to share the recipe with you...if there's anyone out there... lol http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/aaron-mccargo-jr/big-daddys-blackened-tilapia-recipe/index.html Tonights Menu: God old-fashioned Sloppy Joe ( I had to call it something else in order for the twins to eat it) :)

I'm inspired

So last Saturday while cleaning house and helping my new hubby settle in I started watching the Julie & Julia movie. You know the one where the girl "Julie" challenges herself to make every Julia Childs recipe and then she blogs about it. Well, I was so inspired that I started watching the Food Network and I'm deciding on which chef I like the best so that I can introduce some new meals to the family. Oh did I tell you that the kids and the husband are probably the pickiest eaters on the planet. I almost have to make three separate meals so that everyone can eat because I'm a vegetarian, my husband doesn't eat anything with bones (weirdest thing ever but thats why I love'em) and the twins favorite word is "ill". I've decided that I'm going to try some knew recipes and MAKE everyone at least taste it. I'll let you know how this goes. Tonight's Menu: Blackened Tilapia Fried Corn Garlic Mashed Potatoes Cornbread Here goes....

My Life

For some time now, I have been trying to figure out the best way to utilize my blog. Initially, I wanted to share business resources and ideas for other entrepreneurs. Then, I realized that there are so many sites that have great content for sm biz owners and I'm way more than just a business owner. I'm a mother, new wife, business owner, mentor, friend, and the list goes on.... My life is full of action and adventure. Between running a family business, starting a motivational speaking business, raising 11 year old twins, and settling in to the married life there's always something to talk about. SO, I've decided to use my blog to talk about whatever I feel like... I don't have many followers now but I'm sure they're coming...

Fear is the opposite of Faith

Question Submitted to me by a small business owner:
How do I begin to obtain even small contracts seems like things are getting worst in stead of better I have some really good Idea's but fear has gripped me and I'm scared to go forth. MY RESPONSE: First, if you have not listened to my CD please take the time to do that. I have a principle on there about Fear being the opposite of Faith. It will be impossible for you to go forth in fear. It wouldn’t make sense to talk to you about how to get the contracts if you haven’t addressed the fear issue. Fear is not of God. You have to know who you are and more importantly, know who you Are Not. Take time everyday and encourage yourself with the word of God or a positive affirmation. It can be as simple as “The best is yet to Come” and here's the kicker MEAN it when you say it. Now, with regard to the state of the economy etc etc. things will be what YOU say they will be. Faith allows you to say things like “It’s already looking better, Trouble don’t last always, Weeping may endure for a night but joy cometh in the morning” Speak in faith! Things ARE getting better. Believe it or not being successful in your business will start with a major change in your way of thinking! As a man thinketh, so is he ( Proverbs 23:7) Securing the contracts – Who is your target market? (daycares, churches, small businesses, banks etc.) Although all of these may be viable options, choose only one or two to focus on. This will make coming up with a strategy a lot easier. What is the contracting process for your target market? (Industries such as construction generally utilize contractor pre-qualification forms or internet based pre-qual systems.) What does your target use?
What sets you apart from other companies offering your services aka competative edge? How will you reach your target market to secure contracts aka marketing strategy? What is your follow-up strategy? These are just a few questions to consider. Please understand that part of being self employed is being self motivated. Take those great ideas that you have and put them to action TODAY. Don’t be afraid. Also, consider joining a support network of women entrepreneurs. Check out this link: WomenEntreprenuer.com

3 Things to Consider before Hiring Your First Employee!

On several occasions I have been approached by new entrepreneurs who believe that they are ready to hire their first employee and expand their business. I am always very encouraged by the tenacity and passion and I find myself giving the same bit of helpful advice. There are several things to consider when making that big leap into an employee/employer relationship or even business partnership. Here are three important things to consider:
  • Be Clear About what you need: It's not enough to say "I Just Need Help" lol Over and above creating a cookie cutter job description you should personally identify your individual needs as an employer and small business owner. This involves some personal evaluation. Remember making the decision to hire someone makes you responsible for that individual’s livelihood. Therefore, be clear about what you need before taking the leap. You may find that you could save money and utilize time management techniques to accomplish what you thought you needed someone else to do.
  • Can this individual accommodate where I'm going? You should ask yourself this question before entering any relationship beit personal or business. Although you may need someone to simply answer phones and handle occasional filing right now, as your business grows and expands you must keep in mind that your needs will grow and expand. Therefore, be sure that this new relationship has growth potential. Know where you're going.
  • How can I get what I need for little or No Cost at all? Answering this question may turn into a much needed brainstorming session. There are so many different options available to you as an entrepreneur. Keep in mind that the ultimate goal for any new business is to add as much as you can to your bottom line therefore; every decision must be thoroughly thought through. (Tongue Twister). Consider some of these options - Interns, College Students, Community Volunteers, Retirees, Corporate Volunteers, Business Bartering and the list goes on and on. Example: If you are in the pet grooming business you may want to look into Veterinarian School Students who are available to help you out on the weekends. Spend some time at the local PetSmart Stores you never know who you could meet. Network, Network, Network. Another popular method is Business Bartering. Get service in exchange for your services. Let's stick with the Pet Grooming business example. If you are in need of administrative assistance you may consider a virtual assistant option. Maybe your virtual assistant owns a pet of her own. There may be an opportunity for you to barter services. 2 hours of admin help for 2 pet grooming sessions. The point is BE INNOVATIVE<>

Hopefully, this is enough to get you going in the right direction. I'm looking forward to your feedback. About the Author: Sirena C. Moore is a sought after young entrepreneur, speaker, and mentor. At 28 years old, this young entrepreneur has already accomplished more than many entrepreneurs twice her age. She started out as a teenage mother of twins now she is the President/CEO of Elohim Cleaning Contractors Inc. a multi-million dollar revenue generating company that she started with her father and brother in 2002 at the age 21. www.sirenaspeaks.com

"It's not my Fault, It's just my Time" -Sirena C. Moore Download Your Copy Today itunes,rhapsody,cdbaby.com This CD is sure to light the entrepreneurial fire inside of you!