February’s Top Posts

In case you missed them, here are the top posts from February on the topics of Next Practices in Life, Business, and Commercial Real Estate.

I do want to invite you to subscribe to this blog just to the right of what you are reading now.  This will make it so easy for you to get my new posts without having to remember to check my site.  And I will never violate your privacy!

 

February’s Top Posts:

iStock_000021836294SmallWhat are You Worth? – I have a mentor and client who is incredibly successful.  He owns over a dozen businesses. He employs hundreds of people.  He loves Jesus and is one of the most generous men I’ve ever met.  He is an amazing man.  He is someone who we should all want to be like.  A couple of years ago, I was meeting with this man.  I asked him what the inflection point was in his career.  He surprised me with his answer. He told me about a conversation that he had with his mentor.  At that time, my mentor had hit his limit.  He was experiencing what John Maxwell calls the Law of the Lid (read the book – affiliate link).  Read more…

 

Me and the Beast

Me and the Beast

A Letter to My Kids – So, here is a not so short letter to my children.  I share this because I believe intentionally communicating with our children what they should know is a great idea.  Tomorrow is the first day of the rest of my life, but it could also be my last.  I want to intentionally take steps to share certain things with my children that could make a huge difference in their lives.  I share this to encourage you to do the same.  Read more…

interviewCRE All-Stars:  An Interview with Chad Grout, CCIM – I tried something new!  Thanks to my new friend Dan Hayes, I can now record a Skype call (if you want to know how, just leave a comment below, and I will hook you up).  This is the first in a series of interviews of CRE All-Stars.  I will be interviewing CRE All-Stars throughout the United States and bringing you their best practices.  So…meet Chad Grout!  I asked the following four questions to Chad.  Read more…

  1. How did you get into CRE?
  2. How did you decide on your specialty?
  3. How have you gone about establishing your presence and becoming the top-of-mind broker in your specialty?
  4. Explain what having a coach for your business has allowed you to accomplish?

Thank you so much for reading.  I’m excited about the topics for March’s posts.  If you have any ideas on what I should write about, please leave your suggestions in the comments below.

 

 

What Are You Worth?

What are you worth?  You don’t have a clue, do you?

I have a mentor and client who is incredibly successful.  He owns over a dozen businesses. He employs hundreds of people.  He loves Jesus and is one of the most generous men I’ve ever met.  He is an amazing man.  He is someone who we should all want to be like.

iStock_000021836294SmallA couple of years ago, I was meeting with this man.  I asked him what the inflection point was in his career.  He surprised me with his answer. He told me about a conversation that he had with his mentor.  At that time, my mentor had hit his limit.  He was experiencing what John Maxwell calls the Law of the Lid (read the book – affiliate link).

In that conversation, my mentor asked his mentor, “Why can’t I break through?  What is my problem?”

Last week at my company’s national convention, I spoke on becoming a Power Prospector.  Afterwards, one of our top producers wanted to talk with me.  He is tapped out.  He has so much business.  However, he is struggling to keep up with it all. He’s trying to do everything himself.  It isn’t working.

I ask you again.  What are you worth?

This is one of the most important things that you can know when running your business.  Why?  Because you have more to do in any one day than you can accomplish.

Delegation

In both of the stories above, lack of delegation is the problem.  My mentor was trying to control everything.  He wouldn’t delegate.  Thus, he was the bottleneck.  He was the problem.

Our top producer has not put together a team or a system to maximize his efforts.  He is the Lid holding his business and his productivity back.  We are going to remedy this situation, and his business is going to explode.

You have heard that delegation is a good idea, but can you articulate why?  As the CEO of you, there are certain tasks that only you can do.  These are the high-dollar activities or the high value creation activities.  You want to delegate everything else so that you can focus on those activities.  Said another way, anything that anyone else can do, they should do.  This frees you up to do only things that only you can do.

To effectively accomplish this, you must do 3 things:

  1. Catalogue your activities – Before you can delegate, you must know with clarity all the activities that take up your time.  The best way to do this is to catalogue everything that you spend time on for a week.  Write it all down.  Some of you just rolled your eyes.  Don’t skip this step.  Write it all down.
  2. Triage – The triage step involves deciding which are the high dollar activities and which need to be delegated.  Ask yourself, “If I could only do 3 of these activities, which ones would they be?”  Some you will simply want to delete and stop doing entirely.  This step gives you clarity of purpose.  It also gives you the job description for the team member or virtual assistant that you may add.  If you already have an assistant or team in place, this list is now their playbook.
  3. Know what you are worth! – Many of you will be tempted to simply read this and move on with your life.  I challenge you not to.  Go through this with me.  You will thank me.

I’m going to use round numbers.  Let’s assume that you work 50 weeks a year and 40 hours a week.  Now write down what your income goal for the year is.  Great.  The math looks like this.

50 weeks x 40 hours/week = 2,000 hours worked in a year

Income Goal  / 2,000 hours = your value per hour

If you want to make $100,000 this year, then $100,000 / 2,000 hours = $50/hr.  If you want to make $400,000 this year, then your are worth $200/hr.

Rod Santomassimo, the president and founder of the coaching firm the Massimo-Group, knows his number.  He has a note on his desk that reads, “Is what you are doing right now worth $___/hr?  If not, stop doing it!”  This is why you must know your worth.  It allows you to effectively focus on the activities that maximize your effectiveness and earning potential.  Otherwise, you are leaving money on the table.

So what are you worth?  How will knowing this number effect how you lead and work?  Let me know in the comments below!

Why the Biggest Problem with Your Business is You

I hope that you have a mentor.  I have been blessed to have a number of men in my life that have fulfilled this role for me.  You can learn so much from mistakes and experience.  You can also learn from the mistakes and experiences of others.  I prefer the latter.

Having problem concept

A couple of years ago I was having lunch with one of my mentors.  This guy has been wildly successful.  He owns numerous businesses.  He has a great marriage – great family.  Like my dad, he is someone I want to emulate.  I was peppering him with questions.  He told me a story that surprised me.

Years ago, he had somewhat plateaued in his businesses.  He was working too much.  Progress was not being made.  He felt like he had hit a brick wall that he couldn’t break through.  He had a conversation with a mentor of his and asked him what he was doing wrong.  The mentor replied, “The problem with your businesses is you.”

Sobering statement.  My mentor was initially angry.  How could he be the problem?  No one worked harder than him!  He was the leader of these businesses.

I think that every entrepreneur reaches this point.  Characteristics like passion, vision, integrity, hard work, and others are what lead to initial success.  After a while though, the entrepreneur or leader of a business becomes the log-jam.  Nothing gets done with his/her touch. John Maxwell calls this the Law of the Lid.  The business cannot grow past the leadership ability of the leader.  The entrepreneur ends up being his own biggest problem.

At this point, two options exist:  enjoy the plateau or learn to replicate yourself in your business.  In other words, learn to delegate.

I am going to assume that you chose the second option.  The best organization at delegation and reproduction is the Marine Corps.  The Marines regularly take 18-year-old kids and turn them into the best fighting force on the planet.  While you might think that the Marine Corps has a very traditional hierarchical system, it is actually very decentralized.  Twenty year old corporals on the front lines have the training and ability to make decisions on the fly.  Here is how they do it.

Commander’s Intent

I want to acknowledge up front that the Military in general is not good at communicating the “why.”  I rarely knew the big picture.  I suggest that you run your business with the “why” constantly out in front of your team members.

That said, the commander’s intent is the “what.”  This is the directive that comes from on high that says take that hill.  The Commander does not come and tell anyone how to do.  He simply gives the directive.

We recently built a database of all the Dollar Stores in Kentucky.  I gave the directive to my executive assistant to find me the location, physical data, owner, and contact information on every store.  She had the training and tools to accomplish this.  She did not need me hawking and micro-managing.

Rules of Engagement

Remember in the movie Top Gun when Maverick and Goose were in the dog fight with the fictitious MIG-28 at the beginning of the movie?  Their Commander kept telling them “Do not fire unless fired upon!”  (You can see the cigar in his hand, can’t you?)

Rules of engagement tell you what you can and can’t do.  This is where delegation really works.  The best kinds of rules for a team member are the ones that explain what is not acceptable.  In other words, if you can define the boundaries of what is not OK, then everything in that box is OK.

Now your team members have the “Commander’s Intent” or the task to accomplish, and they understand the boundaries.  Within those boundaries, they are free to accomplish the task with great creativity and resourcefulness – and without you staring over their shoulder all the time.

How would these principles of delegation impact the team that you lead?  Are you the lid on your business?  I invite you to share with us in the comments how you could implement these principles in your business.