I’m Getting a Tesla Website Now at JoeKennedy.biz

Super stoked that I’m getting all of my websites  consolidated here at JoeKennedy.biz.  Yesterday I imported Bellevue Business Journal content and today I imported my passion site – I’m Getting a Tesla.  This Tesla manifestation site I started in June 2014 – the day after Tesla at Bellevue Square in Bellevue Washington let me use a Model S P85+ for a full day so I could write a review – I called it “I Want The Magic Car Too“.

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Talking Rain 's New CEO and Sparkling Ice Sales

Talking Rain Beverage Company, the makers of zero sugar Sparkling Ice®, formally announces on September 6, 2018, the appointment of Chris Hall to CEO following a record sales period for the company. With this transition, Talking Rain is also pleased to announce Sarah Gustat as Vice President of Marketing, and Ken Sylvia as Vice President of Sales.
Chris Hall, CEO
Having most recently served as the Chief Operating Officer, Chris Hall is a trusted voice at Talking Rain, and was identified by ownership as the individual that would continue to enthusiastically drive the company forward. Through his decade long tenure at Talking Rain Beverage Company, Hall has risen through the ranks by using his sharp analytical skills, approachability, clear vision and passion for collaboration. Previously, Hall served as the Vice President of Sales for the Midwest and Northeast, where he helped achieve the company’s goal of 100% DSD coverage and distribution. His exemplary leadership skills, stemming from his years as a Submariner in the United States Navy, match his ability to eagerly take on any task.
“I’m incredibly honored by this appointment,” Hall stated. “Having had the opportunity to work with various teams throughout my roles with the company, I’m inspired not only by the confidence that has been placed in me, but also by the creativity and passion of the entire Talking Rain team, who I have come to know well over the past 10 years. I look forward to our continued collaboration as we grow the Talking Rain Beverage Co. family of products.”
Sarah Gustat, Vice President of Marketing
The company is also pleased to announce that former Director of Marketing, Sarah Gustat, has been appointed as Vice President of Marketing at Talking Rain Beverage Company. Gustat brings over a decade of beverage industry experience, having worked to lead marketing operations at Neuro Drinks and First Aid Shot Therapy, in addition to Talking Rain.
Ken Sylvia, Vice President of Sales
Ken Sylvia, former VP of Distribution at the company has been promoted to Vice President of Sales. Sylvia has been an integral part of the Talking Rain team since 2010, and has played a key role in building out Talking Rain’s DSD network in the Northeast and New York City markets. In his new role, Sylvia will oversee all national and international sales, plus all partner brands at the company.
Record Summer Sales
These appointments come on the heels of a tremendous sales period throughout June, July and August, where company records were broken with over 15 million cases of Sparkling Ice shipped throughout the U.S., making it one of Talking Rain Beverage Co.’s most successful summers in history.
“It’s been an exciting summer at Talking Rain, and we are focused to continue our success with a renewed mindset to over deliver for our partners and the consumer,” added Hall. “In the past year, we’ve expanded our internal creative department to be fully self-sufficient, enhanced our digital and social strategies, and put ourselves on a clear path to sustainable success through critical collaboration efforts which have resulted in increased speed to market, supply chain optimization, cross-department collaboration and increased channel observation in the field.”
The company’s recent sales success is attributed in part to a robust summer marketing program where Sparkling Ice’s creative partners including Epsilon, Bread n Butter and 5WPR collaborated on the launch of a Mystery Flavor and contest resulting in 245,000 entries, in addition to a highly targeted digital campaign featuring wacky summer interns “Gary and Ana,” whose ideas, Hall jokes, “Aren’t all that different from some of our lively creative brainstorms here at Sparkling Ice.”
On the CSR side, Talking Rain activated their annual Honor Flight program, for which the Sparkling Ice sales team successfully executed over 850 in-store Honor Flight displays across the country. Talking Rain first began to support the organization several years ago when U.S. Navy Veteran and current CEO, Chris Hall, discovered the organization after stumbling upon a moving Honor Flight departure at the airport. The flight will escort WWII, Korean War, and Vietnam War veterans to visit their memorials in DC.
In addition to the record sales results, the company raised over $100,000 for Honor Flight through donations from vendors, retailers and distribution partners, enabling Talking Rain to fully fund an Honor Flight for aging veterans from Seattle, WA to Washington, DC in fall 2018.

7 Tips to Develop Your Leadership Skills

Dr. Alok Trivedi Offers Ideas to Enhance Leadership Skills

By Dr. Alok Trivedi
Whether you’re trying to climb the proverbial career ladder or digging your feet in as an entrepreneur with big visions, solid leadership skills are a must. The tactics of great leaders can be overwhelming for many to embody, but with hard work and determination, it is more than possible. The jump from employee to employer is a big one, but a strong foundation of leadership skills can further the success of you and your company. The following seven tips are to help you develop your leadership skills when moving up in the business world:

  1. Seek perfect alignment.

As a leader, possess an authenticity that encourages others you are worthy of following. Align yourself with your business beliefs. Your employees will see your enthusiasm and buy in to what you want from the company. Do not lead based on expectations from others. This can be risky because you will always be receiving feedback from outside opinions. Take in constructive criticism, but follow your gut. A great leader does what is best for the whole of the team. Alignment of goals and desires enables a great leader to stay steady on the path to success.

  1. 2. Don’t make fear-based decisions.

Understand why you want to make certain decisions. Find the root of your desire and become aware of a path to achieve it. If you have good reasons for making a decision there should be no fear. Fear stems from confusion or misunderstanding of your true purpose. Many leaders make fear-based decisions out of haste and a failure to plan ahead appropriately. Don’t fear failure as it is a means to learning lessons along your journey. Consider and explore all options before selecting the best decision for your team and business.

  1. 3. Align values with the company’s goals.

The best business leaders are those who live the words of their professional vision. You must set a standard that is reflected in your leadership behavior. Hire individuals that are a reflection of the company’s values. Create a company culture around the foundational ideas and mission of the business. The mission needs to be rooted in the values of the company. If leaders believe and reflect an authentic message, the employees and customers will too.

  1. 4. Expect and embrace failure.

Life’s challenges are unavoidable and leaders are always ready to face them head-on. Regardless of the outcome, a great leader knows failure will occur, but they don’t view failure as a loss. As someone seeking a stronger leadership role, you need to welcome failure as an opportunity for growth. Overcoming life’s obstacles allows you to blossom both personally and professionally. Continue to seek opportunities for new situations because these bring you lessons to learn.

  1. Focus on the vision more than in the doing.

Root your business in efficient and concise plans. The vision and mission behind the plans carry the message for the product. Set goals both big and small to achieve your necessary outcomes. Action should be taken only after careful consideration and a well thought out planning stage. Find your inspiration in the early phases and coalesce it with your vision. This helps your employees understand the inspiration at the root of the company’s mission. 

  1. Balance both logic and emotion. 

Seed inspiration through emotions. Conversely, utilize a more logical method of thought for operations in the company. A great leader knows when to use emotion versus when to use logic. These two work as a yin and yang of one another. A balance of both is needed for success. Develop an emotional intelligence to distinguish various situations from one another. A strong balance of emotional and logical paradigms creates a savvy business mind and leader.

  1. Don’t motivate, inspire.

Motivation creates a pressure on an individual because it leads employees to think they need to perform. In a complementary fashion, inspiration activates employees to improve their performance. No-one can make an employee work harder except themselves. It is your responsibility to bring in the inspiration for them to feed off. Stimulate their minds by creating a sincere and resonate connection to your employees as people rather than workers.
You are stepping up into a bigger role in business, and leadership is no easy task. Create a concrete vision and articulate it with sincerity. Get into alignment with yourself and merge the values of yourself, the business and your employees for ultimate success.
Dr. Alok Trivedi is a psychological performance expert, author of the book Chasing Success, and the founder of The Aligned Performance Institute. http://alignedperformanceinstitute.com/

FastSigns Bellevue Top Performance

Melissa Christiansen and Garan Ingersoll, both Outside Sales Professionals at FastSignsⓇ of Bellevue, received the Bronze Sales Award at the 2018 FastSigns Outside Sales Summit recently held in Arlington, Texas. This award recognizes sales employees who achieved sales of $300,000 to $499,999 during the 12-month period from July 1, 2017 to June 30, 2018.

FastSigns Bellevue Top Performance

With almost 700 independently owned and operated FASTSIGNS centers worldwide, only 82 Outside Sales Professionals received the Bronze Sales Award. Catherine Monson, President and CEO of FASTSIGNS International, Inc., presented the award.
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EPIC or IKON? Which Ski Pass Should I Buy?

Epic Ski Pass 2018-19

With winter closing in across the US and lots of winter storms happening already early in the holiday season, I’m excited to get to ski and snowboard this winter.  Even though I’ve lived in San Diego for most of the last 35 years, I’ve never actually skied or boarded in California.  My on the snow experience has been limited to Washington State (Snoqualmie Summit, Stevens Pass and Mission Ridge), Oregon (Mount Bachelor, Mount Hood and Mount Ashland), Colorado (Beaver Creek and Vail) and British Columbia (Whistler Blackcomb – my all-time favorite ski resort so far).

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San Diego Start-Up We Buy Fugly Houses Seeks Fixers All Over San Diego County

We Buy Fugly Houses in San Diego CountyWe Buy Fugly Houses Breaks into San Diego Fix and Flip Real Estate Market

We Buy Fugly Houses (online at www.WeBuyFuglyHouses.re), a San Diego-based real estate start-up, is building out a nationwide real estate investors network, beginning with a focus on buying, remodeling and flipping houses, condos and apartment buildings all over San Diego County. Continue reading “San Diego Start-Up We Buy Fugly Houses Seeks Fixers All Over San Diego County”

So Very Thankful on Thanksgiving

I have taken up the daily habit of living with sincere gratitude for each and every day I wake up.  Thankfully, so far, I’ve waken up on this side of the dirt each and every day.  It sure beats the alternative.

In the Winners Circle at the Del Mar Family Fun Run, Thanksgiving Day 2018

There are so many things for me to be thankful for, but the most important things are not things, but people. 

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