The Choices We Make

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Over the past week, most of you have already heard of the horrible automobile/tractor accident involving former Bachelor Star, Chris Soules and Kenneth Mosher. This accident took the life of 66 year old Kenneth who was a husband, father, and grandfather. The day of the accident, Chris probably greeted the day with his regular morning routine, which also likely involved strategizing around what the next steps would be in getting the spring crops in on the family farm. Little did he know, within hours, several choices he’d be making would ultimately cost another man his life and will forever change his very own.
The choice (I’m presuming) of having one more drink and getting behind the wheel instead of calling a friend to pick him up. The choice of leaving the scene of the accident. These are all choices he made and right or wrong – will have to live with for the rest of his life. While the investigation continues, there is definite speculation that he was above the legal limit. When Chris left the scene of the accident and refused to come out of his home for over 5 hours until authorities were able to deliver a warrant for his arrest, which indeed has fueled that speculation even further. Choices he made could’ve possibly been prevented and the life of an innocent man saved. Choices that will more than likely put him behind bars for a lengthy period of time and may cost him everything he owns.
This is an important reminder to all of us that every hour, day, week, and month we have choices to make. These choices are both big and small and can affect not only our own lives but the lives of those around us. Please remind yourself that the choices you make today could completely change your life or the life of others forever. As I tell my kids on a daily basis, please make good choices as you never know how a bad choice is going to end.

What Will Your Legacy Be?

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What is your legacy?

How do you want to be remembered vs. how will you be remembered? This is a topic that often comes up amongst my peers both personally and professionally. I put a lot of heart and soul into thinking about my legacy. I feel your legacy begins developing at a young age- whether you are consciously thinking about it or not.

This past week I had the opportunity to meet with one of my oldest daughters friends, Deiondre Hall. Once a UNI Football Player, 21 year old Dieondre, now plays professionally for the Chicago Bears. The premise of our meeting was to share some insight and advice on investment opportunities as well as things to be cautious of to avoid being taken advantage of. Little did he know, it was also a meeting about his legacy and what he wants to be remembered for.

Throughout our 90-minute conversation, we exchanged ideas on businesses to consider, real estate to purchase, franchises to look into, and other general areas to invest. When we dove deeper into the topic of what he’s really passionate about and what his interests are he shared, “Mr. Bradford, I also want to do something really neat for the community and to give back to those less fortunate. I want to help kids in the area who might not have the best upbringing and want to give them a chance”. Keep in mind, this is a kid (and I use that term “kid” loosely and with all respect, but to me he he is still a kid) who just landed a spot on an NFL team. A kid who will more than likely, make millions throughout his career should he stay healthy and invest in his future. Rather than buying high dollar vehicles, a lavish home, expensive clothes and jewelry… he was more interested in what his legacy would be and how he would be remembered. Did he view it as his legacy? Probably not. But it was certainly a conversation around just that. He was already setting the foundation for the great things to come from him throughout his life.

So, I ask you to ask yourself- what is your legacy? How do you want to be remembered? It’s a conversation to have with your spouse, significant other, friends, family, and even your co-workers. Take the first step today towards determining your legacy!

Inspiration Surrounds Us

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Rarely does a day go by that I am not captivated by a quote or motivational video tossed amongst the internet. I find most of them have some kind of meaning to me and they positively impact my thoughts on relationships, work, happiness, leadership, or even life in general. In the spirit of sharing, I hope you too find value in these choice words of wisdom:

“Everything in your life is a reflection of a choice you once made. If you want different results, make different choices.”

“Good things don’t come to those who wait. They come to those who work their asses off and never give up.”

“A team is not a group of people who work together. A team is a group of people who trust each other.”

“The world is full of good people. If you can’t find one, be one.” – Mother Teresa

“Don’t ruin other people’s happiness just because you can’t find your own.”

“Attitudes are contagious. Are yours worth catching?”

“The time is always right to do what is right.” – MLK

“Don’t fear failure. Fear being in the exact same place next year as you are today.”

“Be somebody who makes everybody feel like somebody.”

The New Year Brings New Goals

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Now that 2016 is in the history books and we begin thinking towards 2017, it’s time to reflect on each of our own personal and professional goals we all submitted a year ago. What did we achieve that we put on paper last year at this time? What did we fall short on? Lastly, what did we not even attempt to overcome/achieve?

Goals are meant to push you and get you out of your comfort zone. Goals help you to achieve things you desire if you’re putting in the time and hard work necessary. They exist to help you break bad habits or to build relationships that have gone unattended to. Goals help you live a more fulfilling life.

The year of 2017 is your year to accomplish what it is you set out to accomplish, but it’s not going to happen on it’s own. It’s going to take hard work, commitment, dedication, sweat, and possibly even tears to get you there. You have to discipline yourself to achieve it. No goal is ever easy– nor should it be. All goals should be a stretch so it motivates you to strive for more than you have today.

So while preparing your 2017 goals, only allow goals on your list that you are truly willing to devote time, hard work, and effort towards. Set goals that you will hold yourself accountable to and will take to heart if you don’t achieve it!

Des Moines Register names Next Generation Wireless a 2016 Top 150 Workplace in Iowa

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Next Generation Wireless Voted as a Top 150 Company in Iowa

The Des Moines Register has recognized 150 Companies and Organizations in Iowa as Top Workplaces 2016 . These companies have been recognized as Top Workplaces based solely on surveys about the workplace completed by their employees.

Top Workplaces are not only better places to work but are more likely to be successful than peer organizations.

Click here to check out the full list.

Time Management Tips: Keeping On Top Of Your Day

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Manage your Inbox

Be strategic with managing your inbox. If you spend all day looking at your emails and responding instantly to everything that comes through, you will waste so much time when you could be dealing with important tasks.

Categorize Your Tasks

Spend a few minutes in the morning categorizing your tasks for the day in order of urgency and importance. By doing this you will find it easier to know what to work on first.

Plan Your Day

Its best to plan about 85% of your day so that you know what you’re going to work on. Don’t plan 100% so you can adequately respond to incoming requests or demands.

Do Your Work!

At least 75% of your working day should actually be spent working through the tasks you have set yourself for the day. So don’t spend all day planning and end up running out of time to actually do the work you  need to do.

Write Tomorrow’s To-Do List

Do this at the end of the working day so that you can start afresh in the morning. This will help your mind and body “go home” and “switch off” together- which will help you enjoy your off time.

Bill’s Blog – Simple Rules/Guidelines To Live By

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I would like to preface that this months blog isn’t intended for an individual or group of individuals, but merely my opinion of what’s occurring today.

In today’s society there’s so much hatred and jealousy towards one another that has created more friction than I can ever recall.  This isn’t just friction amongst us, American citizens, but from around the world.  Bottom line is, don’t be envy of others, or wish ill will on those who have what you don’t.  Instead wish them well and learn from them.  Evaluate what you can do differently in your life to enjoy what they have, if that’s what you desire.  Are your priorities in life in line with your goals and objectives?
Are you doing everything and I mean everything within your power to improve your quality of life and the lives of your family?  If you’re not you need to first be thankful for what you have.  Secondly, hold yourself accountable and take ownership of your actions.  Quit making excuses and pointing blame on everyone else for your poor choices.  Third, evaluate what you need to do differently to get where you want to be.  Put a plan in place and stick to it.  Fourth, learn from others.  Lastly, appreciate everyone you come in contact with for who they are and find the good in people.  We’re all so quick to pick someone apart and point out all of their imperfections.  If all of us took the time to truly live by these simple rules/guidelines the world would be a much better place.  I ask of you the next time you hear jealousy in a co-worker, family member or friend to stop them and encourage them to re-evaluate their negativity towards others.

– Bill Bradford