Value-Centered Solutions Insights

By Web Admin 05 Apr, 2016
Often, the line between work and having a life tends to blur together a bit. We can easily let work take over our thoughts, actions, behavior and, eventually, lives. But creating a healthy balance between the two is essential to success. Here are some tips and tricks for a work-life balance:

Even if you've returned home from the office, your mind may still be back at your desk. U.S. News & Report suggested creating virtual boundaries when you're home and when you're at work to help create a healthy balance between the two. This means turning off all the work essentials: your smartphone, laptop, iPad, etc. Even if you're trying to relax and make the transition away from work, these will be constant distractions from relaxing. Over time, making the jump from work to home life will become easier to stick to.

Leave work issues at work
If you've had a bad day at work, it's important to leave those frustrations at the office. Bringing them home will only put you and your family in a worse mood. However, this is easier said than done. Keeping a journal can help you put your negative thoughts onto paper and out of your mind. An irritating day at work doesn't have to imply an irritating night at home.

Keep yourself busy
If you're coming home from a long day at the office, chances are if you're just sitting around the house, you'll start thinking about all of the stress that work sometimes brings. Plan something to do after work hours that will keep you busy and your mind off of work. Vicki Hess, author of "SHIFT to Professional Paradise: 5 Steps to Less Stress, More Energy & Remarkable Results at Work," said that she and her friends meet regularly after work to do a variety of interesting activities like zip-lining, kayaking or cycling. However, if you don't have the energy or budget for these things, try simple things like reading, going to a movie with friends or hitting the town.

Put your loved ones first
What better way to distract yourself from work than family? Spend some quality time with the people you love to take your mind off of things and watch the stress melt away (hopefully). As the saying goes, "don't get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life."

Do you have any tricks to create a healthy work life balance? If so, share them with us! We would love to hear from you.
By Web Admin 01 Mar, 2016

We all remember that famous line from Dirty Dancing when Johnny Castle ( swoon ) marches over to Baby’s parents and lets them know just how he feels. We all felt the victory in that statement. We felt the tenacity and protection. And we all felt the enthusiasm and anticipation for what would happen next. Nobody Puts Baby in the Corner


That’s how the room of entrepreneurs felt at the Entrepreneur Extravaganza as actor Hill Harper addressed the crowd with thanks, letting us all know that, “without entrepreneurs, I don’t believe our country would be what it is today. Entrepreneurs are the engine of what keeps our country going.” Entrepreneurship isn’t merely a career choice. It’s a world-changing commitment. And it’s this commitment that has become the backbone of this country’s economy. Harper, an entrepreneur himself, offered these five tips for success (plus so much more!):


1.     Create, Adapt and Sustain

You put your blood, sweat, and tears into making your idea a reality—make sure you’re agile enough to adapt and you have a plan and system in place to make it sustainable and long lasting. Adaptability is critical to the success of your venture. Markets change, people change—when you’re agile enough to adjust to the times and stay in tune with what your customers value, you’ll create loyal relationships with your clients. There are so many things that pop up that you don’t plan for along your journey, if you’re not adaptable, you will not have sustainability.


2.     Become Self-Critical

Be willing to look at yourself—and your venture—in the mirror. Are you bringing anything new to the party? Are you doing something better, cheaper, or faster than anyone else? If you’re not providing something that hasn’t existed before, or doing something in a specific, special way, then step back and ask yourself, how can I set my business apart and make it shine?


3.     Build Mental Muscles

There’s a certain mindset that successful people have. It’s filled with determination, perseverance, motivation, positivity…the list goes on and on. Do they run into obstacles? All the time. Do they experience setbacks? You betcha. Do they come across naysayers? More often than not. But the successful have spent their time building mental strength to keep them on their course, not letting obstacles and challenges distract them from their journey.  


4.     Be an Active Architect

Start with a blueprint —a plan. Blueprints are specific, down to the inches of the tile—and they’re written down on paper, so write it down or type it out! Then, make sure you have the foundation right—the elements needed to execute your plan: education, training, support systems, faith, etc. When stresses happen, it’s those foundational elements that you will rely on. Next, work on the framework —or the choices that you make. Our lives are shaped by the choices we make, and poor sets of choices can take you off your plan. Lastly, open doors for yourself. Expose yourself to new people, new ideas, and new information. Doors are usually the last things to be installed in a structure; when you open the right doors you may just end up somewhere you never dreamed you could be.


5.     Be Socially Responsible

All of us have help along the way, whether it was mentors, support systems, financial assistance, or just good old fashion volunteers—for a project or a task. Well, what’s the use of having success, a platform, or resources unless you’re helping to make someone’s life better? There are tons of ways to give back, you can invest in youth programs, environmental programs, health programs…you name it. If you’re not financially able, invest a little sweat equity—volunteer your time and effort.


Hill Harper ended his session quoting Robert F. Kennedy, “The future does not belong to those that are fearful of bold projects and new ideas, but rather the future belongs to those who can blend passion, reason, and courage into a personal commitment to the great ideas and enterprises of American society.” As he addressed the room of entrepreneurs, he reiterated and entreated us all to blend our passion, blend our reason, and blend our courage—or our hearts, into all that we do. When we do that, we’re already winners.


Entrepreneurs, don’t let anyone back you into a corner—step out with passion and courage, and have the time of your life.


You can watch Hill Harper’s entire session here: PART 1  | PART 2  | PART 3

By Web Admin 04 Feb, 2016
Not having a problem is a problem.  Often in business we shutter at the thought of being surrounded by problems.  It is true that problems do not necessarily make us feel excited and ready to celebrate, however there is some deeper benefits we must understand.   Problems truly provide the reasons we need to make the company better.

Problems are the indicators that our team, department, or organizations can still be greater than they are today.  Now, we must first properly define what a problem is.   A problem is a deviation or change from a known standard that has been established by your organization.  If for example we are supposed to produce 50 widgets a day and we are only producing 30 widgets per day we truly have discovered a problem.  However, if we are producing 30 widgets per day and have never defined how many widgets the company needs to produce then we cannot truly define this as a problem.  In fact, many companies are calling things problems that are truly more like being in a state of chaos.  In other words things are happening or not happening that we don't like, however we have not defined things enough for the true problem to peak through

If we take the time to define our business properly and create known standards then problems become very useful, precious requests to get the company back on course and/or make the company grow.  Ok, what about when you are meeting most if not all of the standards you have set for the organization?  Is this a time to kick your feet up and rest?  Absolutely not!   This is when you must create new problems by raising some of your standards to push your organization to grow .  Now, do you see what I mean by not having a problem is a problem?
By Web Admin 04 Jan, 2016
I am pleased to announce that I've just created my first course on Udemy (click here . The course is about how to have a systematic approach to improvement through Kaizen.

More than ever before we are constrained to find new opportunities to do things better and at the core of this effort is the Kaizen mindset and philosophy. There are many who have discussed the benefits of continuous improvement, but very few who have figured out how to create a culture in a department, business unit, and/or company that almost naturally improves itself. Teaching an organization to develop a “kaizen eye” to see opportunities that are invisible to most is still a competitive advantage that only a select few have mastered. In addition, as we grow as professionals and continue to be inundated with more responsibility we tend to lose sight of this crucial business skill that today has become mandatory to ensure our organizations do not become stagnant.

In my new course (click here: ) I was able to simplify the explanation of the Kaizen philosophy and introduce a systematic approach to keeping your organization, department, and/or team focused on maintaining a culture that continually finds a better way to save money, increase quality, increase speed, and cultivate more productive employees. I invite you to check out my new course which delivers many great lessons. In addition, please forward this course (click here: ) to leaders and professionals that you know could benefit from this information. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this email and for any contributions you have made that has helped me and the world become better professionals.


Michael E. Parker
CEO and Founder
Value-Centered Solutions

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