Mind Storming For Business Growth

What we’re going to talk about today is what I consider to be one of my easiest, cheapest and most effective business growth tools. I first came across this idea in the early 90’s. I immediately began using it and seeing amazing results. My colleagues thought I was a bit weird (I’ll explain in the video)… but I was more interested in the results Vs what people thought of me.

My secret business growth tool

I initially used this in sales situations to get more leads and win major accounts. Later I used it in business growth strategy, raising finance, solving marketing problems. It’s part of my secret arsenal of tools. And the only people I share this with are my private clients who pay high fees to get access to this information.

My secret business growth tool

I’ve used it to build deeper relationships with major accounts and major prospects. I’ve used it to figure out how to get more done and take more time off. I’ve used it to start new businesses. I’ve continually used it in The Print Coach to achieve our business goals and my personal goals. The whole thing takes less than 10 minutes to explain… and you also get the handout for zilch.

Mind Storming For Business Growth

Join the Discussion!

Let us know what you think. Or ask us anything. Or offer your own sage advice.

The only rule: RESPECT THIS HOUSE! Postings that contain abusive language and/or personal attacks will be cheerfully VAPORIZED. One cross word and – POOF! – your well-thought-out post will be gone in a puff of smoke.


110 thoughts on “Mind Storming For Business Growth

  • Pingback: Mind Storming For Business Growth - Printing Impressions

  • Coworking Spaces in San Francisco

    Have you ever thought about writing an e-book or guest authoring
    on other websites? I have a blog based upon on the same ideas you discuss and would really
    like to have you share some stories/information. I know my viewers would appreciate your work.
    If you’re even remotely interested, feel free to shoot me
    an e mail.

  • Jerry

    Video Comment
    Excellent presentation – I call your empowering questions – “High Gain” questions. I hadn’t thought about this important thought process for some time – your video reopened my brain file.
    I try not to dwell on negative questions however at least 20% of my thinking is about asking less than empowering questions. I am a business development coach that preaches understanding and believing in your plan and executing it flawlessly – so most of my thinking is positive and empowering. Thank you for this – It’s always good to defrag the hard drive to get to the right answers quicker.

  • rena

    I think about how I can better my results. I love the focus that you give it. When I am most successful is when I have a great desire to find a way and I usually get inspired.

    I also believe rest and clearing your mind is a good first step to allow your brain to pump out the information you are asking it.

  • rena

    I think about how I can better my results. I love the focus that you give it. When I am most successful is when I have a great desire to find a way and I usually get inspired.

    I also believe rest and clearing your mind is a good first step to allow your brain to pump out the information you are asking it.

  • Rob

    I think about both really, problems and solutions, going forward, it really is a waste of my time to worry and waste my brain’s Hard Drive space on problems. Your right, it is an easy, easy concept. But in today’s world it is easy to get so caught up in problems not solutions!

  • SL

    Wonderfully insightful! Turns the negative events into positive results-oriented solutions! I need to start asking the right questions – not just general business questions! What value does the business offer to the client? How can we market our value instead of our product? Thank you so much for the wake-up call! I think intrinsically we all knew this but as you said, we’ve become lazy in our thinking, and over the years have become overwhelmed with the amount of thinking that real success involves, instead of stepping back and simplifying the thought process by going back to the basics.

  • silviu

    Great an simple ideea. I now review some of you videos and it turns out that somehow i mised this one.
    An yes – you are right: mostly i spend me time asking the wrong questions. However there are moments when i use right questions. But untill now I did not see clear that distiction. I hope from now on it will be diffrent.


  • silviu

    Great an simple ideea. I now review some of you videos and it turns out that somehow i mised this one.
    An yes – you are right: mostly i spend me time asking the wrong questions. However there are moments when i use right questions. But untill now I did not see clear that distiction. I hope from now on it will be diffrent.


  • Roger

    I spend too much time thinking on the “dark side”! Worrying about what might be instead of coming up with good ideas – which Im actually good at!!!

  • Phil

    This video has made me realise that I am absolutely focusing on solving the problems! I am now going to call my team together and get feedback on solutions! I can see that this is the way forward!

  • Jim

    Hi Nick –
    More good stuff! I am playing catch up on your videos. What do I think about? Pretty much what can I do to bring in some more business (when I am not putting out fires). Your concepts are a bit more “reaching out” and long range, and very valuable for me. I need to back up and get out of the immediate situation. I don’t spend time on why people don’t buy more print, etc, but I do get stuck sometimes on the competition in the market place, rather than just creating away and communicating effectively. All that said, your comments are great “mind food”. Thanks again

  • Peter

    This is like a bucket of cold water over the head – wake up time. Stating the obvious but boy don’t we all look at the wrong things. Action: Focus on what next and how.

  • Joe Costantino

    this is very similar to using positive thinking, positive affirmations to train your mind to move towards the good things you want in life. I am already doing this and train other business owners to do this. i appreciate your blog and information.

  • Allen

    We are, unfortunately, spending a lot of time asking the wrong questions. We need to start asking the “right” questions and (more importantly) focusing on the SOLUTIONS. And responding to the “Tough 21” should be fun! (yea, right ;>) – Allen

  • Mark Lancaster

    I think about my problems a lot but spend little time coming up with solutions. I am like a hamster on a treadmill not making forward progress.

  • Mike

    Great, Just Yesterday I was telling a salesperson about a quote I first heard from Tony Robbins, The quality of your life is based upon the quality of questions that you ask your self on a daily basis” Hence if you ask negative questions Why am i a loser? your brian will tell you why you are a loser. Your comment is the same thing only directed at my business. Dah! thanks for this simple relevation. The best things are always the simplist! I will get right on this! Thanks you!

  • Bill

    Your video is very good and easy to understand. I have heard a similar concept on a sales tape where you write out your most challenging goal on top of a sheet of paper every morning and write out 20 ideas to achieve that goal. Your video helped me understand more on the way we think and how our brain functions, and with that knowledge I will apply your 21 idea system to a number of areas and am seeking solutions in. Many thanks

  • Gene

    I realized that I spend more time thinking about problems than solutions.
    I plan to use this process with critical empowering questions my self and then ask my staff members who are involved with the questions to attend a brainstorming session and see if they come up with the same or better 21 answers to the question.

  • Doug

    I probably have been focused on the problem for the most part. I will try to refocus in the direction of solutions. I may have done that to some extent lately by asking for feedback from my email list of customers as to the usefulness of the material I have been sending them. It has been a great help to hear from them, some quite bluntly, and so I have a much better idea of how to go forward. Now I need to look for solutions to the issue of finding and qualifying a few new customers.

  • Brett

    That was great, all I think about owning a signage & screen printing, is how I can get more sales with bigger companies, we grew 30% last year in sales, but im not sure how we did that, we try to give great service & represent a can do attitude, oh and I also put my prices up:), but I need to create a stratagy that not only do I understand, but that I can follow on a day to day basis.


    Brett Potter

  • michael

    I often try to focus on the ideal state. It’s often hard to stop from dwelling on the negative. I take the time each day to list my top priorities and then focus on doing what is required to accomplish. Problem solving for me includes asking my team about their ideas. We do try to visulaize the goal and try to feel how that would be.

  • Joe Houston

    Interesting video could get down to the nuts and bolts sooner less history. Being a new owner I am always interested in learning new techniques to improve myself and the company I spent 35 years on the production side so any help on the management and sales side is greatly appreciated. This method may help me come to profitable conclusions quicker,when my time is short being divided between sorting production problems and running the offices side.

  • Guy

    Thought provoking, get used to thinking of problems rather than solutions, will take this more positive attitude/strategy into the rest of my week

  • Gareth Murphy

    Video Comment Yes, I to think about the problems in this business and also some of the solutions, being ‘upmarket’ in your approach with customers rather than talking about poor trade definatly helps.

  • Alex

    Thanks for shaking me up this morning – I needed it. Lately I find myself getting sucked into all the negativity surrounding this industry. My main problem was that I became a trade printer because it was a quicker way to build my business, but now that Trade printing prices keep dropping at an alarming rate I’ve decided to move back into retail printing and deal with customers directly. First because when a trade account leaves my business due to price they take all their customers with them and secondly because as a retail printer I can now choose what kind of customers I want to work with rather than the other way around. For example – I’ve noticed a sharp decline in print marketing so I’ve focused on consumables. Companies that use print in the products they sell tend to be bigger customers and I look at their sales force as mine because they are always trying to sell more products and those products include my print.

    Nick – Thanks for the tool and the reminder video. I’m going to print it out so I remember to keep asking myself the right questions!

  • Luc

    What you said in the video is
    great. I can and I will use it.
    I am sure that, If you always look on problems is like staying on the same place and do the same mistakes all over again. So you create a negative future. If you searching for solutions you create a positive one.( maybe has something to do with the law of attraction)

  • Mark

    WOW! Great redirect of thinking habits. I tend to think more about the problem instead of focusing on the solutions. Two things I need to do. 1. Focus on getting solutions. 2. Then think deeper. One or two solutions is as far as one naturally goes. 21 solutions is a stretch, but potentially game changing.

  • David

    The hardest thing for me to deal with is that the questions keep changing before I’ve had a chance to completely find all of the answers to the questions I’m working on. This video was helpful in that it is helping me to refocus my energies into asking the right questions about our business.

  • Simon

    Great for a role which requires innovation at an early stage of new business development. To open doors I normally ask about the clients business but never ask about what problems they face. My challenge now is to follow up the conversation with suggested ideas.

  • Frank Witt

    I like Nicks approach to use your brain to think of the positive questions ( ideally related to your solutions strengths) you can ask the customer when proposing a solution that was initially designed to save the customer money ( typical in the present climate ) so that ultimately it is providing real added value to his business, with any cost savings, an additional bonus, rather than a means to a end.

  • Martin Burlington

    it a good video for good enter preneurs but unfortunately in business this only contributes around 20% of one should do to make a printing venture work.

  • Asif

    Its so easy to get into a negative mind set, when your business is not doing as well as you expect

    You start to question yourself and think it must be down to you… you start to slash prices and start working for nothing!

    Nick’s approach will allow you to think positively and approach the problem from a postive angle rather than a negative one…. i will certainly give it a go… i dont have anything to loose… a win win for me and it didnt cost anything

  • Liam Cann

    I concentrate more on the issues at hand rather than the solutions to get rid of the issues. Time is the factor and key to winning in this game… no rep seems to have enough.

  • Linda

    Certainly the majority of my thinking has been along the lines of replaying the problem video – I plan to make an effort to think on solutions in the future.

  • Ron

    1) I do spend too much time on the wrong questions or problems?
    2) I plan to start asking better questions and using your tools to help me come up with solutions to the right questions.

  • Bill

    very interesting… nice little “kick in the posterior” regarding my thought process… problemsor solutions? probably too much on problems and not nearly enough on solutions.. thank you!

  • Eddie HK Tan

    I have been watching your videos since siginng up and enjoy the way the get me thinking, most of the time – out of the box. BTW the first time I met you was at the Fuji Xerox conference in Korea and was the one that tried a diret videography, producing the not so good video the was sent to you by FXAP.

  • David

    I spend most of my time brainstorming solutions. I plan to do qualification and lead follow-up differently to ensure that no leads fall through the cracks.

  • Robert Haynes

    I think this opened my eyes to the fact we are focused usually on problems in the print industry.

    I will share this with the sales force and hopefully get them to look at your method.

  • Steve

    I spend most of the time trying to think of solutions.
    I am going to adopt a more positive and structure approach (targetted you could say) to getting new business.

  • Tom

    To continue working on growing good size profitable sales.

    Better results from internet marketing and getting new sales people profitable quicker.

    Thank you.

  • Jason Harris

    Another informative piece well done. Main problem is lead generation and I’m looking at various different solutions. Promotional flyers, personalised direct mail, tele sales, cold calling advertising. What is the most effective method? or is is a combination of all of them?

  • Richard

    An eye (or should that be brain?) opener! I now realise I spend my time thinking of problem questions, so will now use the ’empowering question’ thought process.

  • Brett

    As a supplier of consumables to the printing industry I’m always thinking about adding value by increasing my customers press efficiency. I think about increasing my sales without significant overhead costs. I think about using technology to differentiate my company from other much larger companies that offer similar services to the printing industry.

  • Nuala

    Working alone I get bogged down in non productive tasks.
    I am going to get collaborators.
    Brainstorming – it will be so different when using the handout as this is structured thought not my usual random stands that do not get woven together.

  • pat doherty

    Spend a lot of time going over the problems. Going forward however looking to make better use of the technology available to keep closer to customers and looking to have them work with me. Thinking particularly of web based solutions

  • Walter

    A great reminder. I have definitely been more resourceful when I ask myself the right question (my definition of wisdom) and sometimes I have to ask myself several questions to get to the right one. When I have the right question, the answer comes quickly.

  • Jeff

    Great video. I spend most of my time thinking positively about solutions (when I have time to think). My problem is I don’t have much time to think about solutions.
    I will commit to giving myself an hour a day to ask these questions and come up with solutions….and then begin to put the solutions to work.

  • Bobby

    Thanks, This is a great exercise to keep your brain in the creative side, I think this would be a great thing to do before bed. I wake up some times with answers to problems I am trying to solve.

  • Anne-Marie

    def solutions – specifically -what specifically to say and sales tools/collateral that will get positive – active (buying) responses.
    Do differently? Not been real successful with this one! Practicing getting the materials I need/want from team.

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