And these air kind of things that bring everything that we've been talking about together in a way that will help you really really use that this in day to day life in one thing that I just mentioned very briefly I think early on in day one but let's talk about it very explicitly now we're in the process of wanting to be productive wanting to work better so we can get a better result we want to build the business we want to build a business that helps people that rewards us for the work that we're doing we want to make that business in that system as successful as possible and so it's helpful to have a really accurate understanding of what that actually means what it looks like and aa lot of people I see have the mistaken assumption that you should start and then you grow and grow and grow and grow and grow until your joy enormous and the end and that is a smooth upward facing slope from beginning to end right it's all perfect it's all growing in that direction that's not what successf...
ul businesses actually look like what it actually looks like is like is what I call the sustainable growth cycle the business originally goes through a period of expansion new ideas, new opportunities we're going to try more we're going to experiment we're going to find what works and we expand we grow that part works but then you get to a point where oh my gosh, we have a lot of work, we have a lot of opportunity weed don't need really many very new ideas now we just need to take full advantage of all of the opportunities we have in front of us right now that's a cycle called maintenance so what you're doing right now is working keep doing it at a certain point you're going through this process have taken advantage of your opportunities and you're noticing things or being in if it are there's some things that are taking more effort, certain systems are breaking, you're taking advantage of opportunities, but it's really clear that your systems really needed tune up, then you enter into a phase colds, consolidation, that's the part where you're really spending a lot of time analyzing the system, finding their critical few, doing the things to identify ok what's, what's really working in this system and where did the things that we should get rid of one of the things that we should stop doing, what are the things we should cut back on when you go through the consolidation process? That frees up a lot of time and energy that you were spending doing unproductive things and you know what you do with that energy? You start to get lots of ideas again and you go into the expansions face of the cycle again you use the energy to grown grown grow until you need to go into maintenance until you need to go into consolidation and the whole system repeats over and over and over again. So the first is understanding that that's what successful businesses really look like takes an enormous amount of pressure off of you because you'll notice you expand for a while in the expansion will slow it's like oh something's wrong I need to grow I need to grow this is not normal this is not good no, no, no that's exactly how successful businesses work take advantage of the opportunities in front of this great it's also really helpful to understand that when you are in need of consolidation when you need to cut back when you need to prune the roses, so to speak it's important to take the time to do that because if you don't go through the consolidation of parts of the cycle, the wasteful, inefficient parts of your business system just stay in, they fester and if you continue to try to grow through that without getting rid of what's not working, the system can grow large enough that the systems no longer work in the whole thing crashes down around you so it's important to understand these phases totally exist they exist in every business it's absolutely normal and it's important to understand what phase you're in and it's important to follow that process all the way through to completion and then go on to the next one don't make sense anybody feeling like they're in what what what phase do you feel like you're in right now consolidation why? Because there's a lot of stuff that's going wrong and it needs to be fixed at the clinic at least not going wrong but I can tell that it needs a lot of work so it's working but it's not working very well so I think I mean consolidation good me too actually yeah because actually just went through with with the the new book coming out ah very aggressive phase of expansion right new research new material new things to talk about marketing to do sales to do all the super expansion that expansion created a lot of opportunities so for for a while I was focusing a lot of time a lot of energy taking advantage of all of the new opportunities that had presented themselves and now there are certain things the business system that I've created is showing some stress right? There are opportunities that I've taken advantage of that's great but I need to go back and now re evaluate all of the ways that I'm spending my time and energy and keep doing what's working and stop doing was not that's great yeah so me to consolidations great expansion expansion why because we have a bunch of things coming out the next one to have true books, we haven't your children's both we have a novel, and we just released the movie so that so expansion awesome. Awesome. Yeah. So a large part of this is just understand wherein the wherever you are in this process is awesome. That's exactly where you need to be. The question for you is right that why is it fuse awesome for you? He doesn't feel awesome. Yeah, well, the guy holds the company never feel you, don't you? Don't you get this thing through? The stress is always that you've got a lost something like I'm no fit. I don't share that feeling. Yeah, you know, you know, one of the things is even during an expansion phase, all the things we talked about personally of making sure you're getting enough sleep and enough rest and enough recuperation all of those things that you need personally to feel good, that stuff doesn't shut off in any step of this process, right? So you could be expanding and the business is growing and you could be feeling terrible because it's stressful and you're not taking care of yourself, right that's a personal reaction to something that's going on. Likewise in maintenance you could be feeling terrible psychologically about yourself because you're no longer growing you're just trying to keep track of all of the things that are on your to do list and oh my gosh I'm so stressed kind of thing and in consolidation you can feel really bad because oh my gosh my business is not growing it shrinking and I need to stop doing all of this stupid stuff that's wasting all my time I can't believe in hindsight bias takes over you start taking yourselves for all the stupid stuff you've been doing for the past year right? You know it's it's possible possible to feel great during every single part of this process it's possible to feel terrible in every single part of this process and that's very much an internal thing all of these elements are really important aid to honor all of them equally if you where it is the middle path the middle path just like our discussion of across the a very old idea of very old term the middle path uh goes all the way back to aristotle of all people uh old ancient philosopher and the middle path is this idea like but what makes business an art as much as it is a science is that there is no one exact right precise answer to anything in business it's always a judgment call and most of the things that we've been discussing about how to do business well how to work well with yourself how to work with other people don't really look like maximizing or super minimizing or eliminating pre much anything there's always a middle path there's always you know this is this is the idea of just enough things you don't want to do too much of things you don't want to do too little of it is just you trying to find that really nice happy medium that provides you the results that you want, whatever those results might be the middle path is one of those things that you kind of have to just pay attention to in the moment and sense where you are on that continue and you're never ever going to be precisely in the middle, you know there are some things that you could do a little more off some things you could do a little less of that's great that's normal so just paying attention to all the things that you need to pay attention to and just try to judge for yourself could he use a little bit more of this could use a little bit less for this he was a little bit more standard operating procedures and use a little less hindsight bias and taking myself for all the things that I don't know all right it's all the middle path and last thing this is the thing that I think makes business really fun and it's called the experimental mindset test everything test wildly different things try a bunch of stuff you we've talked about over the past two days a bunch of ideas, a bunch of systems, a bunch of processes, a bunch of ways that you can think about your life and your business in order to get a better is all so which of these particular ideas are going to work best for you to accomplish that thing that you I know you want to do? I don't know that's what makes it exciting right that's what makes it interesting these this this is a collection of ideas you can use to go into your life and your business and try cool things and some of those experiments will work and they will work astoundingly well some of those business some of those ideas what work and that's okay, as long as it doesn't kill you you will have more information about what actually works in your case and it's great some businesses won't work and that's also true yeah and if your business doesn't work it's great to do a bunch of experimentation and if that is the reality of the situation then great you stop that business and you start doing something else there's nothing wrong with that, but in general the more you test, the more information you collect about what works and what doesn't you keep doing what's working, and you stop doing what doesn't work. And the more you test, the more you try, the faster you succeed it's. Not a question of if it's a question of when you keep trying new stuff and you will find something that works.
Part of The Personal MBA Bundle
In part 1 of the Personal MBA course, Foundations (link), Josh Kaufman teaches the fundamentals of running a successful business. In this workshop, Getting Results, he will take you to the next level, revealing powerful techniques and strategies for becoming more productive, creative, and successful no matter what your business is. From learning new skills quickly and efficiently, to getting more done in less time and with less stress, to creating and optimizing the systems that will drive your business forward, The Personal MBA: Getting Results offers freelancers, entrepreneurs, and managers the tools they need to thrive in highly competitive, rapidly changing environments.
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