Wednesday, November 26, 2014

What Do The Exceptional Do Differently?

One question keeps coming up. People want to know what the successful among us do differently.

Anyone can be accidently successful for some period of time—you can have your fifteen minutes of fame. Leave success to chance, however, and you are more likely to never reach your goals.

Purposeful long-term success is never an accident.  The people and organizations that achieve long-term durable success do things differently. Specifically, they do five things:

  1. They engage in the planning process.
  2. They set goals and objectives.
  3. They develop plans for achieving those goals.
  4. They prepare for opportunities and contingencies.
  5. They measure progress and hold people accountable. 

# # #

For signed copies of books by Tom Collins, go to the TomCollinsAuthor.com. Unsigned print and ebook editions are available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other online bookstores. For an audio edition of The Claret Murders go to http://amzn.com/B00IV5ZJEI. Ebook editions are also available through Apple iTunes’ iBooks Store and Smashwords.com.
Published by I-65 North, Inc.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Interview For Williamson County Arts


Reporter Michael Ackley covers the City of Franklin for Homepage Media Group. Michael interviewed me several weeks ago, and that interview was published in the November 23th edition of the Arts sections of the Franklin Home Page. For the complete interview go to http://franklinhomepage.com/section/willco-arts.

One of the questions Michael asked me was "How much of what you write in your mystery novels is taken from your own life?"

The main character is Mark Rollins. There is only a one letter difference between Rollins and Collins. The difference between my avenging hero and myself is much greater than that one letter. However, there are similarities. We both know about technology and guns.  We both know about law firms, running a business, and leadership.  I like great wines and the best restaurants. So does Rollins. We both live in the Music City area.  Actually, we reside in  Williamson County, Tennessee which is close to Brentwood and Franklin and  part of the greater Nashville Tennessee area—Music City USA.

By giving the my main character my skill set and placing him in the same place on this earth, it is much easier for me to visualize and write about his reaction to the fictional events I create for him. As an author you have to start somewhere, and by starting with the things I know, I was able to get up and running as an author faster. When you don't start writing for publication until age sixty-six getting there faster is pretty important.


In the interview, Michael mentioned that I recently made the first novel in the Mark Rollins adventure mysteries available as a free download.  If you would like a free download of Mark Rollins New Career go to http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/470351.


# # #
For signed copies of books by Tom Collins, go to the TomCollinsAuthor.com. Unsigned print and ebook editions are available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other online bookstores. For an audio edition of The Claret Murders go to http://amzn.com/B00IV5ZJEI. Ebook editions are also available through Apple iTunes’ iBookstore and Smashwords.com.
Published by I-65 North, Inc.



Saturday, November 1, 2014

Communication is a two way street

Lately, I have run into several situations when performance that deviated from the expected was explained away as “I didn’t know.” “I didn’t know” shouldn’t cut it.  That goes for employees, class room students, and even family members. Communication is a two way street.



 If you don’t know, if you aren’t sure, it is your responsibility to ask. While leaders, including teachers and parents, have an obligation to communicate expectations, individuals have an equal obligation to absorb what is communicated and to ask when they don’t understand or when they need new information or guidance in handling a situation. If the answer is “I didn’t know,” then either the leader is failing in his or her responsibility or the individual who “didn’t know” failed in his/her responsibility.  Sometimes, it is both.

Leaders must clearly communicate what is expected -- goals, objectives, ethics, and core beliefs. There are circumstances when detail instructions or policies and procedures are required.  But you can’t create rules for handling every situation and the conditions surrounding it. Even if you could spell out detail instructions for everything, humans are not capable of real time recall of every rule while on the front line. That is when an organization’s core beliefs or a family’s value system must fill in the blanks.

When we talk about individual responsibility, we are confirming the individual’s obligation to learn and understand what is  expected.  Rather than “I didn’t know,” it is his or her job to say, “I need to know from you.”


# # #

For signed copies of books by Tom Collins, go to the TomCollinsAuthor.com. Unsigned print and ebook editions are available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other online bookstores. For an audio edition of The Claret Murders go to http://amzn.com/B00IV5ZJEI. Ebook editions are also available through Apple iTunes’ iBookstore and Smashwords.com.
Published by I-65 North, Inc.