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About Philippa Kennealy

Philippa Kennealy MD MPH CPCC PCC is The Entrepreneurial MD Business Coach who wants to help you build your business!
meet Philippa>>>

 

 

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Monday
Dec112006

What 15 preschoolers taught me about believing in magic

12-11-06kidswonder.jpgLike many little girls her age, my daughter who just turned 4, is princess-crazy. So it was with unfettered glee that she greeted the Snow White who showed up on our doorstep on Saturday to entertain 15 preschoolers for her birthday party.

Being a parent is a mysterious and wondrous state for me as it happened late in life, so it was initially the parent in me that sat down to enjoy the spectacle of the kids being entertained.

However, it didn't take long before the entrepreneur coach in me started peering over this parent's shoulder, observing the following and then formulating the questions:

  • Kids believe.
    All it took was a dress, a wig, a cute voice and some make-up to transform a hard-working young woman into a credible character. There were no looks of scepticism or disdain on the upturned faces of the seated kids - just pure wonderment. 
    When last did you REALLY believe in something, enough that it demanded you suspend the judgment and limiting beliefs of your "inner critic"?

  • Kids have an unlimited sense of what is possible.
    As Snow White did her magic tricks and recounted her story, complete with description of her castle and how she got to the house by carriage, the kids peppered her with questions about the Seven Dwarfs and her prince.
    What would life be like if you knew there were no limits to what you could accomplish, barring unassailable facts and inescapable realities? And even then, what would be possible?

  • Kids are not afraid to dance in public with a princess.
    How refreshing it was to see the ease with which most of the 4-year olds were able to jump up and dance with Snow White when given the opportunity.
    How willing are you to toss aside your inhibitions and just let it rip with your business idea?

  • Kids have clear priorities.
    While most of the children were absorbed by the activities that Snow White offered, a few had other things on their minds. Like eating - two of the kids sat side-by-side in pint-sized chairs next to the low food-filled table and continued eating unperturbedly, despite the commotion next door. Or hanging out with mom - another opted for a game of Chutes and Ladders.
    What are your highest priorities, when faced with big distractions?

  • Kids don't hide their feelings. Restraint was NOT the order of the day - the house reverberated with excitement, silliness, and joy, and even the parents were caught grinning and laughing! And the tears of disappointment and frustration flowed unabashedly when some of the kids didn't get to to stir the magic pot with a wand!
    What would life be like if you could sit with the entire range of your feelings, without having to reject those that made you uncomfortable or restrain those that filled you with pleasure?

  • Kids don't hold back once they are convinced.
    One child sat at the back of the crowd and refrained from participating for two thirds of the show. Her face registered little other than a certain watchfulness. Her puzzled mom remarked to me how surprised she was at her daughter's lack of reaction. Suddenly the little girl came over to her mom and asked her to introduce her to Snow White - which she did. The transformation was spectacular! The little girl chatted non-stop to Snow White, did everything she could to get her attention, and spent the last 20 minutes following her around like a shadow.
    What energy will you bring to your efforts once you are fired up with conviction?

Most of us were preschoolers so long ago, it is almost impossible to remember that state of acceptance and wonder. And yet, I'm sure we wouldn't have to scratch too deeply below the surface to find our yearning - our longing to believe in the magic of what we could achieve, if we could simply give ourselves the permission to view the world through the eyes of a 4-year old again!

Of course, I realize that this post bears a small and poor resemblance to Robert Fulghum's All I Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten, but I couldn't resist writing it!! After all, I want to dance in public, and not hold back, even when my inner critic tells me that you, my readers, might think I'm crazy.

Tuesday
Dec052006

Volume 1 has arrived!

CWTB Vol1 alt.GIF

What would you give to sit at the feet of the masters - those physicians who have blazed a trail into successful entrepreneurship - and hear what they have to share?

I began to ponder that question, after a great deal of trial and error getting my business going and then taking it to the next level. So much so that I began contacting physician entrepreneurs that I knew or had been referred to, to see if they were willing to share some of the lessons they'd learned.

Along the way, I developed some impressive detective skills tracking down other success stories, in my quest to learn more, and bring you the best.

What I discovered from these conversations was both reassuring and inspiring. These were regular docs who had gotten a bee in their bonnets about an idea for a business. Where they differed from most of us was that they had heeded the call, acted and built thriving businesses - sometimes more than once!

And along the path, they had stumbled, stubbed their toes, dusted off the dirt and hung in. In doing so, they learned valuable lessons that they generously shared with me.

Now I am excited to bring the completed Conversations with Trailblazers Volume 1 to you. Volume 1 consists of 6 interview recordings (downloadable audio files) with their accompanying PDF transcripts, edited to read more easily than conversation does. There's also a bonus with this Volume, so look out for that.

Hop on over to the Store and see for yourself - you might just find the dose of inspiration that will give you the energy boost you are needing to make your New Year's dreams for a business a possibility!

Tuesday
Dec052006

Five Steps to Pain-free Marketing

12-02-06marketingplan.jpg

This month's newsletter article is devoted to the mysterious subject of marketing, a topic that horrifies and thwarts most physicians starting out in business.

Even going into private practice as a doctor demands some basic marketing skills nowadays. Gone are the days when you could "harrumph" in your white coat, sound smart and ever-so serious, and have Aunt Betty tell her bridge buddies what a great doc she has!

I am willing to acknowledge that I shared that perplexed feeling and incipient dread at the thought of having to go out and find clients to coach when I hung up my coaching shingle. Way back, it had been relatively easy building a private practice when all I had to do was act nice, listen a lot and explain my thoughts about treatment. People knew what physicians did - they didn't get that blank stare as they did when I tried to explain what happened in a coaching relationship

As a result of some pretty serious dollars in my education, not only do I no longer avoid marketing conversations and creating plans, I actively welcome them. It brings out the passionate conviction in me that coaching and helping physicians become great business people are valuable services, the skills for which I have worked really hard to hone.

Let's see what you think!

What are your biggest headaches about marketing?

Sunday
Dec032006

The Joys of Collaboration: How to Know When You Have the Right Partner

12-03-06oldfriends.jpgI just got in from Los Angeles to Phoenix in preparation for a full day of work tomorrow with my wonderful mastermind buddy Pam Slim of Escape From Cubicle Nation fame.

What makes this a special and exciting trip for me is that Pam and I discovered each other in a teleclass we were both taking, almost a year ago. Since our first phone conversation, I have felt a special kinship with her personally, as well as with her professional aspirations - she helps corporate prisoners escape their Dilbert cubicles to become thriving entrepreneurs. And I help physicians escape their claustrophobic exam rooms to do the same.

On the surface, it is pure coincidence that we both have as part of our mantras the concept of "Thrive", but at heart, we are both dreamers on behalf of our clients and readers.

What has finally gotten us together in person is a formal collaboration effort - we are designing and creating a coaching program for StartUpNation - a premier business providing an extensive array of online and radio support and resources for entrepreneurs.

Our task is create a 12-week program to provide the "human inspiration" and live coaching for their comprehensive 10 Steps to Open for Business program. Our intention is to bring alive in class the wealth of materials and tools that reside on the website, so that any aspiring entrepreneur who engages in the program can develop a systematic and thorough approach to starting a new business.

What makes this collaboration with Pam feel so powerful?

  1. Mutual delight. Our phone and e-mail conversations have been peppered with personal stories of triumph and challenge, and we both enjoy celebrating each other's wins and commiserating on the (fortunately few) losses.

  2. Trust. Right from the start, we discovered that we shared the values of business integrity and respect. This has created a sense of great ease around collaborating when there is money involved.

  3. Equality. I am in awe of Pam's talents and accomplishments, and I sense the response is mutual. This makes competitiveness an unlikely intruder into our working relationship.

  4. Diversity. We have yet to put this to the test, but from our prior conversations and our initial business discussions with the folks at StartUp Nation, Pam and I offer the project different viewpoints, a variety of on-the-job and life experiences, and complementary skill sets.
     
  5. Enthusiasm. There was no mistaking the excitement in our "pre-working day chat" this evening - this is going to be a fun project filled with learning for both of us - from each other and from the experienced people at StartUp Nation.

  6. Efficiency. The sum is greater than the individual parts. Together, we can combine our minds, divide up the tasks and test what works with two different groups, and report back on what needs tweaking and what is doing well. This means that we will be leveraging our time well - invaluable for two busy professional women with young children.

So ........ Imagine identifying your next joint venture or business partner.

    Who will that person be, and what will he or she embody?
    What strengths do you need him or her to bring to the collaboration?
    What do you have to offer? How deep are you willing to dig?

I look forward to a long productive alliance, and to reporting, many years from now, on our testy spats of the kind that comfortable old married couples and longstanding friends have!

Wednesday
Nov292006

Quick news about TWO upcoming December teleclasses

quick news tidbits.jpgI have a quick reminder about my complimentary monthly teleclass on December 13th at 5:00 PM Pacific/8:00 PM Eastern.

The topic will be: Legal fundamentals for my business - What do I need to know about the Law when starting a business?, and I have the pleasure of interviewing Stephanie Granato, a Los Angeles-based attorney who has a wealth of information and knowledge to share about the various legal aspects of starting a business. I know I shall learn a lot.

I shall be coming on the call prepared with questions to interview her, BUT..... I would love to know what your questions are! Please send your questions to me in advance of the class - you can use the Contact Form here - and I'll happily work them into the interview.

(PS: In case you are wondering, we web folks are being advised to keep our e-mail addresses off our web pages to help manage the deluge of spam, by outwitting those technical robotic morons that scan pages to farm e-mail addresses - sorry to have to ask you to communicate with the contact form instead!)

Remember, even if you cannot be present at that time on the call, you will still receive a copy of the class recording later, as long as you have registered on this page here! If you haven't registered, my automated system will not know to send you the recording link.

And I am asking you to sign up for each class individually, in case one class is not of interest to you - I do NOT want to be filling your e-mail boxes with follow-ups unless you have expressly requested or permitted them.

So, join us for a lively class and get your pressing legal questions answered - and let's promise to be nice to our guest, even if she is an attorney <smile>!!

*************************

I am also delighted to let you know that I have been invited to participate as guest faculty in an Audio Conference, sponsored by Oakstone Medical Publishing, on December 6th from 1:00 to 2:30 PM Eastern (10:00 to 11:30 AM Pacific).

The topic for this live audio conference (it's just like a teleclass!) is: "Become a Physician Entrepreneur: Use Your Medical Know-How and Credibility to Launch a Lucrative Business", and I shall be sharing the stage with Amy S. Leopard, a Cleveland, Ohio attorney and former health care executive.

Some of the issues we will be discussing (time permitting) include:

  • Overcoming fears and common barriers
  • Tapping into available resources
  • Determining your entrepreneurial “sweet spot”
  • Dealing with family fears and life changes
  • Start-up strategies
  • Calculating initial investments and securing start-up capital
  • Partnerships
  • Creating support and marketing networks
  • Legal, tax, and regulatory issues

To learn more, and register directly with the sponsors, click here.