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Volkmar Völzke's BLOG


Right now!


At the moment, many companies are running like clockwork: Sales are growing, production and delivery capacities are running at full speed, and the outlook for this year at least is very good.

And this is precisely the trap for sustainable success maximization: This good situation is largely caused by external influences, at least in most companies. This means that these companies are going down just as quickly as demand is dropping.

Here is the recipe for success of sustainably outstanding companies and teams: they invest in their strategies and tactics to maximize success exactly when no one really needs it and no one has time for it. That's why they keep on rising even when the others are shrinking.

Here are three topics you should invest in, especially when things are going well: 

  1. Sales. "I sell more than we can deliver," I often hear from salespeople in booming times. However, as soon as things get worse, they usually sell less "than we can deliver". Therefore: invest in...
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The power of videos


Today is a somewhat unusual post: You get access to over 40 short videos to increase your success, for free!

That's what it's all about: My new YouTube channel is live, with over 40 videos right from the start. Click here to subscribe to the channel.

Why are videos important?

Well, I keep recommending to my clients the increased use of personal videos (with them in front of the camera) for internal and external communication, mainly for three reasons:

  1. Clarity. If you want to communicate a message to others via video, you must first be clear about what should stick with the viewer. "What are my three learning points?" could be your question before the recording, for example. My recommendation: record videos with your smartphone, even if you don't use them afterward. It forces you to organize your thoughts.
  2. Conveying emotions. The only thing that motivates people to act is emotions. There is no better medium than video (besides the live performance of course). When you record...
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It's all a matter of scale

leadership mindset May 03, 2018

"If everyone else drives at 300 km/h, you won't even notice the speed," said world-class motorcycle racer Tom Lüthi in a recent interview. The question was how to keep your bike under control at this speed and in tight corners.

I assume that you probably rarely race with a motorcycle at 300 km/h on the roads. However, there may be areas in your life where others think you are traveling very "fast" and don't even feel that way. 

My point is this: many companies and teams drive with such low ambitions in many areas, metaphorically, that they hardly move from their place. How would it be if instead you increased your “speed of ambition" so that you are incredibly "fast" for most, but at eye-level with the best of the best?

Three examples of increasing your "ambition speed" to 300 km/h:

  1. Sales. Become world class in sales! Learn from those organizations that have proven to be extremely successful in their sales. This includes many aspects such as mindset, structure,...
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My new YouTube channel is live!

marketing & sales Apr 30, 2018

Hey, that makes me a little proud:

After weeks of preparatory work it is done! My new YouTube channel is live:

And right from the start, you will find almost 40 videos, freely accessible.

Here is my suggestion to maximize your benefit:

  1. Go to the channel and click on "Subscribe".
  2. Forward the link to friends and colleagues.
  3. Apply the content and comment on the channel.

I look forward to seeing you on YouTube!

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The 7 most obstructive beliefs for your success

leadership mindset Apr 26, 2018

In my workshops - especially when it comes to winning team culture - I always teach and train the importance of one's own beliefs for success and a fulfilled life. Both go hand in hand.

Again and again, I encounter the same beliefs that prevent people from succeeding and generally stand in their way of achieving something meaningful. Most people are not even aware of this… how could they be if they have never dealt with the subject matter before?

So here is my hit list of the seven most obstructive beliefs for success:

  1. "I have no talent!" One of the worst statements ever. This gives us the justification that we cannot change anything.
  2. "I'm employed!" What a word! No one is "employed". We are all the presidents of our own lives.
  3. "I don't have time!" Of course, we all have the same 24 hours a day. "No time" always means "no priority."
  4. "Others are to blame!" No, you yourself are responsible for all your decisions - even how you react to the stupidity of others.
  5. "The successful...
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Leadership lessons from skiing

leadership mindset Apr 19, 2018

Some days ago, I was skiing for the last time this season (in Tignes/France), in full sun and with a lot of snow. I myself am a passionate skier who "comes down" pretty much every slope – the black steep moguls - with a bit more fight and less elegance.

During one of the descents, an analogy with corporate culture came to my mind: it's just that most skiers master blue slopes (the easy ones) with great safety and routine. With red ones (for advanced skiers), you usually have to concentrate a little, and the black steep mogul slope (for expert skiers) sometimes demands everything from you.

Isn't it the same in companies? They have various people who easily descend the blue slopes day in and day out, while some people take the red one. But the challenge of a black runway comes to few people's minds: it's exhausting, pushes you to your limits, and carries a certain risk with it.

My thesis: most companies have far too many "blue slope drivers" and far too few who regularly tackle...

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A lesson for making decisions

leadership strategy Apr 13, 2018

Recently, I watched the film, The Post, from Steven Spielberg and took some lessons that are crucial insights for any leader. 

Not only do Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks perform extraordinarily well, but they also highlight the dilemma of a serious decision, with two strong alternatives, under great time pressure. In the end, the film is about freedom of the press, but that is not my point here. 

When the Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham makes her most important decision with global impact within a few hours (in the end minutes), the same factors you see with every small business decision come into play: diverging interests, uncertainty, and values. 

What can you learn from this for your next decision-making situation? Three things:

  1. Define strong values and your mission! Ms. Graham finally made her decision based on the strong values that had once been defined for the newspaper (e.g., serving the people and not the politicians). Such values can only be invoked...
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That's how it works!

culture leadership strategy Apr 06, 2018

I must admit, sometimes, I doubt whether what I contribute to companies as principles of success really works. But the clear answer is: YES! 

Why do I know that? Because I see the evidence at events, namely when business leaders - from any industry - report on why they are outstandingly successful. This was recently the case at the KMU SWISS Forum in Switzerland. 

Here are the three most important success levers from my perspective, which were unanimously reported by CEOs:

  1. A clear and strong vision. It is an ancient wisdom, yet it continues to be disregarded by most managing directors: Only with a strong, concrete, and convincing vision can you create something outstanding. By when do you want to be there with your company? Many businesses exist only because of this vision; others have disappeared because of lack of vision. It is your choice!
  2. Winning culture. This also runs like a repeated pattern through all success stories. Clearly, you can't be successful without...
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Do you believe in Easter bunnies?

Let's keep it short today: Happy Easter! I hope you have a great time with your loved ones and do what you enjoy the most.

Here are three Easter ideas on how to make the remaining nine months of the year outstanding:

  1. Have exactly three main goals for the next nine months. Who exactly are you and what exactly do you have achieved until the end of the year? Write this down and hang it on the wall in front of you (or even better: paint your ideal situation at the end of the year!)
  2. Install exactly one new habit per month. Yes, right: If you apply ONE new success habit for 30 days every month, you become "automatically" better, 12 times per year!
  3. Read at least one book or invest in a video or audio course per month. And this also applies if you are "employed": Don't wait for your boss to tell you! It's YOUR life. So invest in it!

To make faster progress with all this, take a look at my Success Academy Pro. Click here.

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Why success ends abruptly

mindset productivity Mar 30, 2018

In principle, one would think that anyone who has once been successful should also remain successful. Although we are used to seeing people and companies again and again whose success suddenly turns into the opposite, we rarely understand the true reasons behind it. 

So what keeps us on track, even if we continue to increase our success, and what, on the other hand, throws us off track?

The question is highly relevant to everyone at all times. 

Here's the simple answer: we often forget to keep doing the things that originally made us successful. We believe that success happens "automatically" at some point. The opposite is also true. 

Success must be regained every day! 

Here are three examples in which we keep falling into the trap of success:

  1. Relationships. Regardless of whether private or business, relationships must be maintained with the same dedication with which we initially built them. Companies would have more recurring customers, and more marriages...
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