Success Equation

Happy Friday!

Today I was reminded of a simple equation: “Success = Preparation + Opportunity.” I don’t know who said it first, but it’s powerful and true.

In my own life I’ve been often lucky – in the right place at the right time. But encountering opportunity doesn’t equal success unless we’re prepared to act. Perhaps it’s as simple as having an elevator pitch ready in case we encounter a potential investor, or keeping a passport current in case an opportunity involves travel.

Today I’m reflecting on this question, if success occurs when preparation meets opportunity, what is one thing we can do right now to help prepare for the opportunities we desire to meet?

Have a sunny weekend!


P.S. “It’s a funny thing, the more I practice the luckier I get.” Arnold Palmer

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Back to the Future

Good morning,

Happy Friday! Here’s a funny story to brighten your day.

I recently had an hour to spare before a meeting, so I planned ahead to spend it writing a radio script at a nearby Starbucks.

All was well as I sat down with my coffee and opened my computer bag. Then I discovered I’d left my computer back at the office.

“Oh no!” I thought, “What am I going to write with?” It took me a full fifteen seconds to remember that pen and paper work for that! This got me thinking about what it means to live in such an electronic environment that pen and paper are no longer second nature.

My technology-free moment was short lived. Immediately after writing out my script by hand, the next thing I did was dictate it to Seri to send back to the office.

What a world we live in. Enjoy it – and have a sunny day!


P.S. “The real danger is not that computers will begin to think like men, but that men will begin to think like computers.” Sydney Harris (Journalist)

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Simple Secrets

Good morning,

Happy Friday! Sometimes a secret to success can be summed up in a single word such as:


This week reminded me that no matter how hard we work toward a specific goal, we don’t have total control of the outcome. Often our efforts result in something awesome…that looks totally different from what we originally had in mind.

Recognizing positive results that differ from our expectations, and demonstrating the flexibility to embrace and appreciate those results, are valuable skills to practice.

Wishing you great success – wherever it appears – and a sunny day!


P.S. “The measure of intelligence is the ability to change.” Albert Einstein

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More Food For Thought

Good morning!

Running through my head today is a quote I’ve had on a plaque in my office for over a decade:

“Excellence is the result of caring more than others think is wise; risking more than others think is safe. Dreaming more than others think is practical and expecting more than others think is possible.” Anonymous

Caring, risking, dreaming, expecting – all great food for thought as we each strive for excellence in our own way.

Expect the best – and have a sunny day!


P.S. “Make each day count by setting specific goals to succeed, then putting forth every effort to exceed your own expectations.” Les Brown

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Speak Up

Good morning,

Happy Friday! This week I had the opportunity to hear business coach Heidi Gray speak, and she pointed out an uncomfortable truth:

What you permit, you promote.

Sometimes ignoring an issue or comment seems easier, safer or kinder.

Unfortunately silence translates as endorsement. This doesn’t mean throw political correctness out the window, but consider the consequences of looking the other way.

We should think before we speak, and we should speak up more often.


P.S. “Remember not only to say the right thing in the right place, but far more difficult still, to leave unsaid the wrong thing at the tempting moment.” Benjamin Franklin

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New Year, New Website

Good morning,

Happy Friday! In the spirit of the new year, we just published our new website at

Like Sunny, many businesses and individuals focus so much on serving others that they don’t take the time to apply their skills to themselves. It’s the old saying, the cobbler’s children go barefoot.

It’s time for new shoes!

From improving one’s business to improving oneself, let’s all find ways to take our own advise – and have a sunny day!


P.S. “There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.” Ernest Hemingway

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Learn, Improve and Try Again!

Good morning,

Happy Friday! The end of one year and beginning of another is often a time of celebration and renewal. It’s also a time when many of us come face to face with failure to achieve some of the goals we set for the year.

Talking with a hardworking friend yesterday, we reminded each other that while it’s important to set big goals, we mustn’t let ourselves get too discouraged when targets get missed. Don’t let distress over last year get in the way of reaching higher this year.  Learn, improve and try again!

With this I mind, today I wrote my own version of the Serenity Prayer, which I’ve attached below as encouragement for any of us who feel the weight of year-end successes and failures.

Enjoy the new year and have a sunny day!



Posted in Sunny notes | Tagged Beginning, Celebration, Friday, Goals, Inspiration, Motivation, new year, Renewal, Serenity, sunny | Leave a comment

Surprise and Delight Customers

Good morning,

Happy Saturday!

In a marketplace full of competition, every business – no matter how mundane the product or service – must find ways to:

Surprise and delight customers.

The other day I was a customer who experienced one of these moments. It was a Saturday morning when I was upgrading my Microsoft Surface laptop to Windows 10 and ran into some questions that made me call support.

My call was promptly answered (surprise!) by a woman who logged into my computer remotely, intelligently answered my questions and then said the part that blew my mind. “I want to make sure your installation goes smoothly so I’m going to stay on the line until it’s all set.”

Wait a minute…did she miss the part that I’m installing a new operating system? It takes hours for all those files to do their thing, even on a good day! So I pointed this out.

“That’s okay,” she said. “Just put me on speaker phone, hit the mute button and go about your day. I’ll take care of it. You can check in with me any time and I’ll still be here.”

So I did. First I took a shower, dried my hair, made breakfast. Then I cleaned the house. Every once in a while I went back to the phone and said hello. She was always there, never had the line on hold. I lost track of how many hours went by. Occasionally she asked me to reboot the computer. Eventually I returned and asked, how’s it going?

“You’re all set, I was just waiting for you to come back to let you know,” she said, like it was no problem, that I could have run out to the store and she would have waited cheerfully.

“Thank you,” I said. “That was amazing!” And it really was. With my computer handled by Microsoft – for free, and my chores all done – by me, I could go about the rest of my day. I was absolutely delighted.

In any business, every interaction – no matter how long or short – is an opportunity to surprise and delight the customer in big or small ways.

Be delightful – and have a sunny day!


P.S. “Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning.” Bill Gates

Posted in Sunny notes | Tagged Biz, Business, Customer service, Customers, Dedication, Inspiration, Learning, Motivation, quote | Leave a comment

Don’t Let “Knowing the Answer” Get in the Way of “Asking the Question”

Good morning,

Happy Friday! Yesterday I jumped in my car and headed straight for the freeway because I knew exactly where I was going. About three minutes later I wished I’d asked Google for directions, because I was completely stuck in a traffic jam.

Stranded there I had plenty of time to think about where I’d gone wrong and how I could apply this lesson to other areas of life:

Don’t let “knowing the answer” get in the way of “asking the question.”

Since I’d been sure I knew how to get there, I didn’t ask Google for instructions. Unfortunately, like many situations in life, there was a better solution. However, knowing the old way had prevented me from learning a new way.

Imagine all the questions we don’t ask because we (think we) already know the answer. Instead, let’s ask again – as if for the first time – and open ourselves up to new discoveries.

And when it comes to driving around town, ask Google for directions first, no matter how familiar the route.

Drive safely – and have a sunny day!


P.S. “Judge a man by his questions rather than by his answers.” Voltaire

Posted in Sunny notes | Tagged Answer, Biz, Business, Driving, Google, Inspiration, Lesson, Life, Motivation, Question, quote, Solution | Leave a comment

Let Go Of The Old To Make Room For The New

Good morning,

For a person who loves change, I get surprisingly attached to my cars. Every time I turn in a lease, the sales consultant shakes their head in disbelief to see me reluctantly relinquish my car in exchange for a brand new one.

It’s not that I don’t appreciate the new car – after all I’m a serial leaser. I simply get attached to the one I’ve been hanging out with every day. Turning in a car is a straight forward reminder that we have to:

Let go of the old to make room for the new.

However, “what to let go of” is frequently not so obvious. We’re not always sure if, or when, something better will appear, and so letting go requires a leap of faith.

Last week I let go of my race car. I’ve owned or leased a lot of cars over the years, but this was the hardest goodbye. It was my first race car, a major catalyst of positive change in my personal and professional life, and a sentimental symbol of overcoming the odds.

But looking ahead, in order to advance I’m going to need a new race car. So I took the leap of faith, sold my car and trusted that the right new one would be found in time for the next race season.

I called my teammate, told him what I’d done, and listened in amazement as he told me he’d just been looking at the perfect car which we should acquire right away! Fortunately I’d made room in my life for the new, and within 48 hours we closed the deal on my next race car. I’m amazed by the timing, grateful for the past and excited about the future.

Many of life’s best moments are bitter sweet. Enjoy them – and have a sunny day.


P.S. “We must be willing to let go of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.” Joseph Campbell

Posted in Sunny notes | Tagged Biz, Business, Change, Dedication, Goodbye, Inspiration, Motivation, New, quote, Wisdom | Leave a comment