"I’ve tried to pare down my day so that the stuff I actually do is pretty well leveraged. That, and I show up. Showing up is underrated. "
-From an interview with marketing guru Seth Godin
I think there is a lot of wisdom in that statement - it really made me think.
First, Godin says that he "pares down" his day, so that Second, the stuff he does is pretty well leveraged. If I'm reading this right Godin is saying that 1.) He doesn't spend a lot of time working in a day, and 2.) When he does work, its intense, its "leveraged." I'm an efficiency freak (probably because I loose so much time to distraction), so I'm wondering just what he means by "leveraged." Leverage has become a big, big word for me as I have realized its power. Leverage is what frees men from jobs. Leverage is what makes men rich. Leverage is what makes men extraordenary. Leverage is the internet. The new leverage is "collaberation." Do you know about internet collaberation? Check out www.wikipedia.com
- an incredible online, human edited encyclopedia that was written and is still being written, revised, and expanded by millions of people around the world. Your encyclopedia may not have a reference to Mark Cuban, or the newest technology, or "exurbs," but wikipedia does. In a few years the internet has written what would have taken decades (and been greatly out of date by then) by using collaberation, by using leverage. It reminds me of the great buildings and pyrimids that were built thousands of years ago. They were built by diverting massive amounts of money and manpower, or slaves to a project over decades.
Anyway, back to leverage, and shortening your day. The average American worker used to work 8 hours a day - I guess the average clerical or industrial worker still does, but the rest of us went to 10 hours a day, and if you're an entrepreneur, it seems like you never stop working. In fact, you're probably not reading this blog because you're working. Yet, advancement, creativity, effeciency, wisdom, and just plain sanity requires some free time to think
Let me ask you two questions:
1.) How much of that 10 or 12 hour day are really
working? I'm serious, how much of that day are you completely focused on completing a task that is essential and of great importance to your business? And how much time are you spending on things that really matter very little, but you just like doing...maybe you don't like doing it, but you like doing it more than the other hard things you should do. If you were to really track the important and necessary work you do in a day, how much time would that equal? Could it really only equal a couple of hours a day? If it is, might you be better off working 3 hours a day and thinking and playing and growing, and reading, and spending time with your family during the other hours?
2.) Lets think about that word "leverage" again. I'm a Realtor, and a small time investor. If I want to invest in real estate, I can use my money, or someone else's money (mortgage). If I buy a $100,000 home and make 10% appreciation a year over one year, I will have made $10,000 in appreciation. If I take that same $100,000 and spread it out over 5 homes at $20,000 a piece and get a mortgage for the rest, I'll still make $10,000, a house....that's $50,000 instead of $10,000, minus the interest. I've used "leverage" to make myself 5 times as effective. How can you use leverage to make yourself 5 times as effective?....My first thought is computers, which I love to leverage, but maybe we ought to think people as well. How much of what you do during a day could be done by someone who makes $10 an hour?
Another word I like is "synergy." My wife hates
synergy, or rather, she hates the word. She says some guy made it up and then it was the cool word to use to make yourself sound smart. i think she's right, but the concept is amazing. My barber is 35 minutes from my home. When I need to go to the barber, I wait until I have something else I need to do in that part of town. I kill two birds with one stone - synergy
. My business model is loaded
with synergy - it runs on it. Synergy multiplies, it's Gung Ho
, that's "working together" for those of you who didn't read the book or see the film. Have you thought about what things you can do that will have multiple
effects? If there something that you're not doing for your clients or customers becuase its too costly or time consuming, that, in reality have multiple effects? For example, maybe you're thinking "boy, this guy has absolutely nothing to do but sit around and write this blog - I could never find that much time to waste on something like that." But then, you may be thinking that I have some very interesting thoughts, and maybe you're thinking that you need to explore some of them in your business model. For me, this blog has multiple effects (by the way, Mark Cuban, the Billionaire, has a blog which is updates daily):
1.) This blog allows me to document my observations.
2.) This blog allows me to expand my thoughts on those observations.
3.) This blog allows me to write
4.) This blog pounds in those observations and thoughts and permits me to review them at a later point.
5.) This blog allows me (from time to time when someone actually reads it) to give something of value to people.
6.) This blog exercises my brain, makes me a better speaker, and a better thinker.
7.) This blog links to my website, www.AggressiveHomeSales.com
, which helps my ratings in Google.