Free weekly professional success tips, directly applicable ➔ Subscribe here

Volkmar Völzke's BLOG


How to write an article in under 30 min

A common challenge for my leadership coaching clients is weak communication. Even among experienced leaders, I notice a high barrier when it comes to producing short videos and writing articles. Both are extremely relevant to effective communication.

I will take up the video topic another time. Today, let's take care of writing articles in less than 30 minutes, from a "blank slate".

It starts in your own head: for many executives, article writing is an unpleasant and energy-sapping task. The root cause is usually a lack of process and, related to that, the idea that writing an article takes hours or even days.

Building on my experience of writing now about 1000 blog and magazine articles, I have developed a process that allows writing a roughly one-page article (about 300-400 words) in under 30 min, starting from scratch.

Here is the 10 step process to article writing:
  1. Pick a rough topic (e.g., "How can everyone make faster decisions?").
  2. Determine the target audience: who exactly...
Continue Reading...

Why are you not asking?

leadership mindset Feb 02, 2021
When was the last time you asked a meaningful question?

Seriously, we all tend to get into our daily routines and forget to ask questions. Instead, we try to “get things done” or find solutions to problems. 

I think it was Einstein who said “If I had one hour to solve a problem, I would spend 55 minutes on finding the right question to ask, and 5 minutes to find the answer to this question.” 

Studies show that children ask over ten times more questions than adults do.Why is this the case? Subconsciously, to grow. Asking questions means learning, means growing, means getting to new levels. In other words, when we stop asking questions, we stop growing. 

Your progress and success in life (and in your business) are directly proportional to the number and quality of questions you ask. 

Here is my suggestion: By today, ask more questions to yourself, your colleagues, your team members. Asking questions differs from questioning things or...

Continue Reading...

How great was your year? These 10 simple questions provide the answer.

leadership mindset Dec 27, 2020

I think it's a good habit to slow down from time to time and look back on your accomplishments. This season is a perfect time to do that, and I want to provide you with some powerful questions to ask yourself and others. You can also use these questions for discussion among your leadership team. Just replace the "I" with "we" in this case.

Here are the 10 questions:
  1. How did I make life better for somebody (or for our clients)?
  2. Which of my personal goals did I achieve?
  3. What went extremely well?
  4. What went not as well as I had hoped?
  5. What was my greatest personal development?
  6. Who was grateful for me being around/doing my job?
  7. What did I learn that will have a lasting impact on my success?
  8. Which unimportant activities did I stop doing?
  9. Which important activities did I invest more time in?
  10. Whom should I thank for his or her support?

Tip: record the answers to those powerful questions on video. This could be your personal year-end manifesto, no matter if you share it or not!

Continue Reading...

What determines your destiny?

mindset Dec 20, 2020

At this time of the year, most of us take some days off to reflect about life and to be with family and friends. I think we should never wait for Christmas to do so, but make it a daily, weekly or at least a monthly routine to meditate and be grateful for all the good things that surround us. 

I recently stumbled over these well-known wise words, which you might find worth thinking about: 

  • Beware your thoughts, they become your words. 
  • Beware your words, they become your actions. 
  • Beware your actions, they become your habits. 
  • Beware your habits, they become your character. 
  • Beware your character, it becomes your destiny. 
I wish you, your family and your friends a peaceful Holiday Season and I look forward to providing you with fresh insights, ideas and thoughts in the next year. 

P.S. It is never too late to decide still this year, for bold progress in 2021. Just click here and learn more.

Continue Reading...

Your personal lockdown

mindset Dec 17, 2020

For most people, this is the beginning of a somewhat quieter time - various companies are closing their doors, and, in this respect, many people are going into their own personal lockdown. This may also be something positive.

In this special year, it's a good time for a little reflection; for example, how your team and you have managed to deal with the out of the ordinary situation.

After all, we all have found ourselves in a situation that no one could have foreseen a year ago. And I think that, given these circumstances and the unpredictability, we have done very well so far (I'm not making a judgment here about the health and fatal consequences of the virus).

Here are three ideas how you, as a leader, can make the most of the year-end slowdown:
  1. Gratitude. It is extremely important for our well-being and for directing our thoughts to feel gratitude. If you are grateful, you cannot feel fear or aggression in that moment. So…what are you really grateful for? Few do this...
Continue Reading...

What if…?

mindset Nov 12, 2020

What if you started each morning by being grateful for what you have and where you are (no matter where you actually are)? 

What if each day you achieve something substantial? 

What if each day you make at least 3 people smile? 

What if each morning you breathe deeply, drink water, and increase your physical energy level? 

What if each evening, you realise what great things you have achieved today? 

What if each hour, you make progress in at least something? 

What if each week, you make progress towards your grant vision in life? 

What if you realise that you have far more capability than you actually utilise? 

What if most people would be happy to have all the chances that you have in life? 

What if you can make a difference in people’s lives – and you actually do! 

Take charge of your life, your career, your business. Play out fully. Each day. Each minute.

Do you like this post? If so, please forward it to a colleague...

Continue Reading...

Start your first 100 days today!

The first hundred days are a sort of magical period: after a hundred days, a new president should have put a stick in the ground and made some important decisions. After the first hundred days in a new job, you should be clear about what you want to achieve, know the main stakeholders, and already made something different than your predecessor. 

Consequently, during these first hundred days, we feel energised, motivated, empowered. We feel as if we can make a real difference. Because we can. 

The sad truth is that the energy and inspiration often decline after this period.You probably know this effect from any major project: after some hype, the engagement decreases and routine settles in, sometimes even frustration. Obstacles that we surmounted with ease in the beginning seem to be insurmountable some weeks later. 

How do you keep the fire burning? Start your first 100 days today!

No matter where you currently are, even if you have worked 20 years in the same job, I...

Continue Reading...

What are you getting upset about?

leadership mindset Oct 22, 2020

What are you getting upset about? What is annoying you? What irritates you?

No matter what your answer is, it is not the thing or the person that annoys you, but the connection to a story inside you.

"Whatever upsets you, reveals you" is old wisdom. In other words, you can only get upset or angry about something if you declare it important. And this importance usually comes from some "story" that we tell ourselves unconsciously.

Since it is rarely helpful for your success if you get angry (because it directs your energy to things that don't get you anywhere), I recommend that you get to the root of the problem - and then eliminate it if possible.

This insight is especially important when you are leading people. Their reactions are rarely to the actual thing, but rather to their inner reflections on it. 

The following tips will help you to deal better with "unpleasant" reactions, from others and from yourself:
  1. Your world is not their world. What you associate with certain...
Continue Reading...

Yes, this is your responsibility!

leadership mindset Oct 08, 2020

If your environment is not the way you’d like it to be, whose responsibility is this? If your team is not acting the way you’d like it to act, who is responsible for this? If any of your relationships – professionally or privately – are not the way you want them to be, who holds the responsibility? 

You guessed the answer: it is always YOU. Nobody else! And if you think now “well, I can’t control and influence everything!” then you are right. But you can always control your perception of the reality. For example, if you think your work environment sucks, there are two perspectives: your actual work environment and your perception. You can often change your work environment, and you can ALWAYS change your perception. 

You’ll almost always find people on this planet who would appreciate what you refuse. The difference is perception, the mirroring with our own psychological blueprint. 

Let’s make it...

Continue Reading...

Sprinting or jogging?

leadership mindset Sep 18, 2020

I am sometimes asked about my online program, 100-Day Success Challenge: In business and personal life, shouldn't we be marathon runners rather than sprinters? And shouldn't we focus on the long term instead of just 100 days?

Good questions! My answer is quite simple: We need both.

Whoever only sprints runs the risk of exhausting him/herself too quickly. On the other hand, if you always focus on the "long distance," you often start too slowly and do not build up enough momentum.

It is an old adage: For big plans and goals, if the first actions are not started within 72 hours, usually they just remain plans and goals. We need momentum - and as quickly as possible!

(And because I see a weakness with many people, I have created the above-mentioned program.) 

Here are 3 items for which a sprint is always worthwhile, or even extremely important. I suggest that you take a look at them with your team:
  1. Training of success habits. We cannot build habits if we only work at them with...
Continue Reading...
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11

50% Complete

Yes, I want to benefit from the FRIDAY NOON MEMO

Simply enter your name and email and hit "Submit".

Important: You will receive an email with information on data privacy, which you must confirm in order to register effectively. Please check your email inbox.