Jay brings up a good point about whether or not it’s true it’s fantastic marketing copy he says 95-99% of all business are blind, they’re operating tactically they have no idea where they want to go, where they need to go. and the only reason anybody would do this if because they don’t know how to operate strategically, they don’t have the marketing marketing sense to optimize those results, but from the overall business context as well. So what were we can add great value is to go and show people the strategic shift so that can double triple multiply by a factor of 10 their current profits.
Another great great positioning Jay says I’ve dedicated my life to getting more for less, more results for the same capital, for the same amount of effort, with the same amount of people. Give me the operation you’ve got and I’ll show you how to get more out of it. And it’s a fantastic way to represent your services you’re already spending money on marketing you’re already spending money on your staff you’re already spending money here. I can show you how to optimize them. And that’s the the value proposition.
Understanding of the overarching strategy is so important because everything changes. After the first encounter after the first problem, everything changes. So you want to have your five year strategy, but after the first month it’s moot, so if you can’t go back and edit it then you’re in trouble.
Abraham’s first and probably simplest definition of strategy is that strategy is the overall vision of where you want to go what value do you want to bring, what you want do what’s your goal and it’s something that you can objectively measure all of your tactics against so if you decide you want to run and, if you decide to hire somebody, you should be able to measure that against your strategy and see that the highest and best use of your resources.
There are three basic myths about strategy we have to dispel before going forward. Number one is that strategy is a rigid and set in stone and that couldn’t be further from the truth strategy by it’s nature has to be flexible has to be fluid and the number two is of marketing itself is a strategic level function. And that’s wrong, marketing is just as tactical as sales unless it’s driven by your higher level strategy and the third is the strategy means system Abraham says that’s not the case he’s going to spend time further in the program going through and debunking these and coming up with their definitions a strategy and how to use it
Recommended book is Clausewitz on strategy and this is a distillation of the original worker
Couple of random notes on strategy that are good to keep mind number one Occam’s razor simpler the better Bruce Lee said it about finding Clausewitz said it about war and it’s true everywhere. The more complex something is the more chances you have the fuck it up, so make sure that when you create a strategy keep it simple and give it the mechanism to change.
Number two subordinate or eliminate all minor secondary efforts in other words be very clear about what your major definite purpose is what’s your reason for being and then make sure that everything you’re doing fits into that make sure that everything you’re doing can be measured against that and then get rid of, delegate, or higher out all of the other stuff.It does you no good to have a bunch of things that you just have to do but that don’t contribute your major purpose it’s much better for you to give them to subordinates to subcontract it or to just get rid of it altogether, because you only have so much time you only have so much energy and you have to focus that and marshall it toward the highest and best use of your time.
Another great Clausewitz point worth noting no battle plan survives first contact with the enemy or Mike Tyson everybody’s got a plan to like a punch in the face. The first time. it is very important to plan, but know that your plan is not in unfold exact as you lay it out on paper. get as many alternatives as you can make the best choice you can with information that you have but build in flexibility build in the ability to react to market information. Otherwise your sunk
You can’t create a strategy unless you know the numbers behind the business it does me no good to tell you a strategic option or a strategic direction to move in if I don’t know the numbers that your business is producing. If I don’t know what the lifetime value of the client is what the likelihood that they’ll convert to another service is. If I don’t know any of that, if you don’t know it as a business owner then any strategy is just shooting in the dark. When you do know those numbers, then you can work toward a really profitable strategy work toward an intelligent strategy.
Questions you should always be asking yourself as a business leader is “of the myriad strategies that are possible with the myriad of strategic objectives that are possible what are the odds that the one I’m currently using is the best.”do this to keep your mind open for new strategic changes for shifts the might make your business much more profitable.
Or more efficient, etc.
Jay did an interesting exercise where he took pieces of the annual reports of the Fortune 500 and cut out most of crap and looked at the strategy section for what they said that their strategies were, and he noted that over 80% of them so 400 of the 500 had either divested pieces of the business, had acquired new pieces of business or had changed the nature of their business. Between their origins and where they are now. In other words, they’re changing the strategy they’re looking outside of themselves . To maximize their potential.
Crowd insights: number one was asset redeployment take a look at all the assets that you have what do you have in your business that could be used in other ways or could be used more or could be useful to other people or could be useful to other businesses, and look at how you can get more money out of those assets
Insight number two was focus determined that you’re going to become the biggest in your industry spend all your money on marketing to your strengths, on your research and development or on your testing of where you think the trends are going basically keep your eyes open for the shifting nature of your business and be quick to jump on the ability to grow it so you differentiate or die, you niche in, and you also focus on being the best within that niche
The next key insight that’s worth noting is that most of the companies have multiple revenue streams. They’re not just the dependent on one cash cow, and they’re always ready and willing to redefine themselves in terms of what their value proposition is so they’r enot holding on to something that’s no longer work. So they’re always willing to cut their losses to dump companies or revenue streams that aren’t working well and acquire those that are, it’s constant redefinition.
So as an entrepreneur as a small business, you should constantly be looking at your numbers look at where the revenues coming from, look at how much effort you put into get that revenue, look at what revenue could become and how hard would it be to acquire that, to expand you look at whether or not, you need to divest.
A note on multiple streams of income some of the best companies (and this is probably very true for the entrepreneurs), is that it’s not about having streams of income coming from very different businesses it’s about being able to bring in income in many different ways within your core. So can you create a product. Can you create a seminar series, can you create a college can you create anything else over and above what you’re already doing and what can you do to star generating additional revenue within that core. It’s not about going and getting a bunch of stuff the doesn’t fit your business.
Is there a way that you can use your low revenue producers in order to begin customer relationships that you might not otherwise get If you do $10,000 a pop work, is there a way to have a thousand dollar line where you can get a bunch people in who might eventually be interested in your $10,000 work.
A great distinction between strategy and tactics the tactical approach to growing is to work harder to do more the strategic approach is to make the shifts necessary that make growth almost inevitable.
Mac brought up a great point, especially small businesses there’s really 2 set the goals of the business and personal goals and these often conflict people might want to work 20 hours a week and have of enough to sustain them and their families. They might want to work a lot more, they might want to work less, if they want the biggest company what are they willing to give up to get it? If they want time off, what are they willing to give up to get it? the real question strategy is what do you want. Why, and what are you willing to give up to get that. and then you can start working strategy around it. you might find a way to work 20 hours a week and generate $2 million a year net profitable business, but you need to know that’s what you want first you can’t just go in with “I want the most money or the biggest company.”
This set is very much like the market domination set where it’s hard to take specific notes,
because it’s about individual companies and there are some things that pop up and some
great questions but it’s hard to decide what to take note of, so with that in mind. A lot of
these notes are going to be fairly sporadic.
So the first group up was a sales training organization what they were talking about is right now they’re three people with different strengths and coming together into one company, and want to go from 3 million in sales to over 40 million and there’s obviously some simple issues here like determining your corporate structure defining who your target market is looking at scalability if it’s a personality sell right now then how you can then turn it into a systematized sell?
This company is currently using a couple of cool tactics and grabbers and gimmicks in order to get meetings. One is they send the “crying towel”at it’s a towel with a list of sales excuses the second followup to that is. A T-shirt with a hundred excuses listed on it. This is great for that Just give me the number Dan Kennedy story “Don’t give me an excuses just give me the number”it could obviously be modeled to whatever market you’re working in just find the most prevalent excuses.
Another gimmick they’re using is up sending out a black bamboo nut and this is where bamboo trees come from. You plant these nuts, and water every day for three years for almost no effect and then within 30 days they grow 90 feet. So this constant nurturing with no immediate effect and then all of a sudden there’s a giant explosion. Now this is a fantastic metaphor for any type of long term relationship You may not see a need for this, but you might want to nurture this relationship. Even if you’re doing fine now, even if you don’t have any immediate issues the question is what happens when you do have an issue, will you have a strong organization there to deal with it. Will you have the tools and skills and people to deal with your future challenges. It’s never too soon to develop an old friend, so start now. the language he uses is fantastic. It’s never too soon to start developing an old friend, and while you may have no immediate needs. The question is this when you do have a sales issue, when you do have a problem in your organization will you have somebody there who you can trust, who you know, skills that won’t be opportunistic, that won’t be trying to exploit you but instead who you have an established relationship with that can help you.
A twist on the old Nightingale thing of “what would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail”so the question is how many salespeople would you hire if you knew that they wouldn’t fail or how many branches would you open if you knew that you will succeed or how many physiotherapist or massage therapists would you bring in if you knew they would all making money and the answer is obvious enough I would do anything if I knew I couldn’t fail, I would hire all the salespeople, I would bring in all those other people. This kind of question opens up a dialogue, gets them thinking, and then they start to ask “Well how can you ensure that they won’t fail?”“Well, I’m glad you asked that Bill… ”
Chet Holmes is recommending a guy named Steve manning who has a series called how to write a book in 14 days or less might be worth looking at.
Good book title/slogan/whatever: “You can can sell and still go to heaven.”there is this image of selling and marketing and trying to make more money as being inherently bad. And if you can reeducate people into seeing that they’re actually providing value that there’s nothing inherently wrong about selling or marketing and making more money, then that sets you apart from the crowd of the hard closing in the traditional viewpoint of selling market.
So it’s good to have an overarching strategy it’s good to have your grand strategic plan but within that you’ve gotta have the shorter term stuff that you do and then loop back to the start so we’ve got our two year or 3 year plan, but here’s our 60 day plan, and at the end of that 60 days, we have to determine how we’re going to move forward in the following 60 days. So that you’re not continually falling behind your ideal, but instead you’ve got a dynamic process where you can change your strategy based on real world conditions.
There are two big mistakes to make what you’re trying to improve your business the first one is to try to do too many new things and the second one is to try do things are to high risk or of too little reward. one of the best things you can do is use the knowledge that you have to incrementally improve something that you’re already doing or to do one thing. That you think has the highest percent chance of return and then build on that.
The biggest lesson of the guy who put together Jay’s encyclopedia got is that when you’re doing business improvement you take one thing you do it to the hilt, you track it, you test it and then you tie it back to your strategic plan you tie it back to your business plan and that means make sure that it fits in with your core goals. That might mean take the profits you make from this and reinvested into this area. or reinvest it into the next thing that you’re testing, and the ability to do that will help you increase your business by a multiple of 2,3,4 times the size just by working on one thing at a time and then folding it back in, rolling it over into new successes.
The entrepreneurs biggest challenge for growth is that they don’t want to let go. They built their business to whatever level it’s currently at and they want to hold or remain in control of every department. That’s death for a large organization or for small organizations trying to be large. you’re better off having other people doing the tasks that you’re doing 80% as well as you do them, but have 10 people doing them than you doing everything 100% of what you can do. when you get someone to handle it for you, when you get an employee when bring somebody in, when you delegate, you know it’s not to be done as well as you would do it, but you can get 10 times the work done at 80% and as know from Alan Weiss. 80% is good enough nobody ever cares about the other 20% anyway. so the key is that you have to identify the things that you do so well that nobody else can or should do them and then let everything else go and accept the fact that you have more people doing it slightly worse than you could but you’re affecting a whole lot more people you’re making a lot more money.
STAMP model: Strategy, Tactics that are used to get there, Automation (systematization), Metrics (how’s it going to be measured), Person who’s responsible for it.
That’s a pretty good model for any type of business when you’re moving forward: you define your strategy, set out to tactics that you need to get there, how are you going to automate it (so that it’s not just scraps of paper, or 4 different people and 4 different systems), what metrics are you going to use to determine success and who is the one person is responsible for or who are the people responsible for it.
A note on delegation and training: one of the key problems that faces most organizations is that they’re setting people up for failure they say “here do this”and then don’t give them the authority or the tools of skills or knowledge to do it properly. so if you’re going to delegate something, it’s best if you have a proven process that they can follow in order to get the rudiments of it and then after that if the people who are doing it can think of ways to improve it then we can talk about that and make it a little easier. But up until then make sure that you’re doing everything you canto ensure that the people you’re delegating to have all the resources they need to succeed.
So Mac does a really interesting thing where he names problems based on other industries he’s talked so far with about the plastic surgeons problem where plastic surgeons can’t get referrals because people who are happy with it don’t want to tell anybody that they got plastic surgery. He talks with the postage stamp problem where you’ve already got one first class stamp on but to add a little bit more to that envelope you’ve got to stick a whole other stamp on, if you need to build a factory but there is only limited production, you need to bring in another doctor into your practice but you don’t have the patient flow yet that’s a problem. The interesting process part of this is that he’s differentiated, he’s created distinct things and that’s what Weiss talked about when you can do that, you show that you’ve put a lot of thought and analysis into this problem and it just makes you look smarter.
When you’re dealing with production or proprietary processes and the question is do I build a new plant or how do I expand, think of things like lease optioning, things like joint venturing to use under utilized space. Think of that type of approach as a much lower risk intro into that movement. So you can see whether it can handle the additional capacity without spending the millions on a new plant.
Interesting tactic used when bitter rivals want to do joint ventures or purchase or whatnot is to form a corporations and hire somebody as the acting president of the corporation you retain all the stock and then the president of that corporation, who does this for a living, goes in and negotiates a deal. So that the other party doesn’t know you’re behind and there’s not emotional baggage involved in trying to get set up.
The biggest problem of strategic alliances is that most people spend all their time and effort just cutting the deal and then either one of two things happens either your it’s very important for you to get it going and your alliance partner doesn’t really care one way or
The other, or it’s important the alliance partner, but they really have no idea how to get it going. So you as the architect of it have to be in there, have to be continually working on it and working in it, if you can take control of the marketing and say “Look, I’ll take all the expenses of it and we’ll pay your portion of the profits coming in, so I’[ll take the risk of the marketing up front and do it, and I’ll take a bigger cut of the profits until it’s paid off.When you can do things like that, then you’re in a very good position versus just getting the alliance or JV set up and then nothing happening.
A strategic model for marketing: number one try to figure out the areas that people aren’t seeing that competitors aren’t seeing, that even the potential clients themselves aren’t seeing. number 2 go them and say “Here’s what we think the issues are”, then lay out what you think the biggest issues in they and their clients or their customers are facing and see if you’re right see if it strikes a chord if not they’ll tell you and you can work around that but it really is going toward a more solution based rather than product or service based selling
Next show them that you’ve covered every possible base but that they can remain in control of how they use it. So you do go in and talk to them, you find out what their problems are, you suggest all the different ways they could utilize a solution that you’re giving, and give them options, give them control
Next explain that you realize that it’s a process; that you’re not just going to go in once, but that you’re going to have a relationship, that you’re looking at a longer term, you’re looking at the continued sustained growth and benefit for everyone
Next you talk about the benefits they can get, so if it’s more money. You don’t just talk about more money, but instead talk about the things that they could do with that money.
No matter how good any given one tactical effort is it’s not to achieve much on its own or it’s not going to achieve nearly what it should on its own, you have to have this sequence, you have to have a strategy, you have to have a larger frame strategic approach. So it’s not just sending a letter. It’s three letters from three different sources, it’s follow up phone calls.
It having a testimonial book, it’s having all that and when you put all that together into a cohesive strategy that’s all aimed at bringing you more business. Then you’re looking at a much better chance of taking money out
One of Jay’s great lessons is that nothing goes without saying. you say it for them. so it doesn’t go without saying what they can do with an increase in their income stream. It doesn’t go without saying what the benefits that they’re clients could receive from your service. None of that goes without saying, you have to say it for them, and in doing so you’re providing value.
It’s important when you’re explaining what you do if it involves a sequence which it should, to let them know that it is a sequence, and manage the expectations so that when they send out the first mailing and get the response back from that they shouldn’t necessarily be expecting the moon and stars from that they can very well expect the moon and stars from your sequence that’s fine, because that’s how you’re selling but make sure the they understand that they have the let your sequence run.
Very cool Jay Abraham model for business is “why what how do”so why are you doing it, why are you in business, what are you doing, what’s the strategy or what are the tactics. How are you doing it, so you say that you’re you increase revenue, well how, what’s the mechanism of that? And then do, so do it, and the do will come back to the why, so it loops around on itself, because when you do it, you can see the results, can see if it fulfills, and you can measure it against your overall strategic objectives
A great frame for the strategy of preeminence from Jay: you have a moral obligation to share your beliefs with people if you believe that it can help them but you have an equal obligation this must be balanced with knowing that once they have a firm understanding of the options. Once you’ve given them your pitch or your spiel, if they don’t believe that what you told them is appropriate for them, then you have to respect their choices. So the strategy of preeminence says that your moral obligation is to inform, is to educate and then let them make up their own decisions.
The Paddi Lund strategy is a good one and it’s basically an orientation strategy so when you start dealing with somebody you let them know what the expectations are on both parties. Here’s what you can expect of me, here’s what I expect of you. and some of the things that he delineates in what they can expect of him is how quickly does see them. He says within two minutes unless there’s an emergency. next he talks about the expectation of care or service and he says you can expect that I’ll deal with you same way I do with my mother or my wife or my family or my closest friends. and then if you have certain things that you differentiate yourself with IE painless procedure or quick procedure, or that you’re the best in your field. You’re a master level whatever it is, delineate that’s their expectation of you, which does little to build value right off the bat and then you tell them what you expect of them and Lund’s are one You make an appointment you keep it, pay at the end of every visit no billing, no chasing, number three that they take care of themselves and follow his recommendations in the interim, he’s a dentist so it was regular brushing, flossing, and a checkup at least twice a year, and probably the most important par that if I do everything I say, and your happy and your fulfilled, then I expect you to refer in at least two people like yourself who will also appreciate what it is that I do, and then he finished off by saying so if you don’t live up to your end of this bargain, then I only have two choices I’ll either have to fire you as my patient or of I’ll have to charge you a significant premium, and here’s what that premium is. This is a fantastic strategy to use in any professional practices.
So on the main idea behind the strategy of preeminence is this idea that I’m not going to wait until money’s changed hands to start providing value I’ll start providing you value immediately and then if we decide to work together, I can get much more in depth and specific for your particular case.
One of the things Jay talked about was going back to your best clients or your happiest ex-clients and you pick the top 10 top 20 top 30 and you ask them to get you in the door with organizations or with other businesses that would be a compliment to you. So you can then go in to work out some JV structures. there’s application of this all over but the big thing is that the principles of the business, the person that was working with them. Calls them up expresses interest in how they’re doing, you pour on the flattery “We’re calling a couple of our best customers or the customers the clients that we’re proudest of, and what we’d like to do is… ”then talk a little bit about the JV thing that you have, talk about why it would benefit them why it would benefit the organization the other business and basically spell out all the good things that can happen from it and by doing that you really get to open the doors for joint venture opportunities, it’s not cold calling or cold letter anymore, you’re
really warming them up.
This is very important scan all of your communications to ensure that every communication talks about the value that you bring every communication either brings them value or is structured in such a way as to add value to their lives or to remind them them of value that you’ve brought. so things as simple as taking incoming phone calls, but especially your outgoing letters especially your marketing make sure that every communication that you have emphasizes value, because by doing this. You keep that at the top of their mind.
When you’re looking at alternative strategies when you’re looking at different ways take your business or ways to grow, take the time to chart them out. Do a process visual have potential risks and potential returns, all lined up and then you can make an informed decision
Macs talking about having a board of advisers basically just being window dressing. Here are people that are very prestigious in their fields or that have a lot of connections that you can use to get into that. so theirs a guy doing work for the government and the defense sector, he’s got a three star general on his board, he’s got couple others who’re high up in Government security. But he’s not using their connections, he’s not using their names. Or the fact, that he’s on the board of advisers at all, and Mac says that’s all a board of advisers is they don’t know anything about your business, they know that might be useful or believe in what you do, but they don’t know your business so the only thing that is really do for you is to provide their name to provide their status and provide their connections.
A further note our advisory boards these come in two flavors obviously they can be there for advice, they canbe there to help you with your business run things by them see that they’re thinking, or they cancome just as rainmakers and sometimes it’s a bit of both, but you want to be clear when you’re talking to somebody about joining your board of advisers what their role is going to be, why you’re bringing them on. And of course when you do this following Jay’s model you want to put it in the best interest for them and put into how it’s going to be valuable to them. But know yourself and make sure they know what is the purpose of joining your board of advisers.
This is a great point when dealing with anybody business partner client whatever never assume that you have a shared agenda until you actually establish it. never assume you have the same understanding or the same motivation until you establish that and that way you’re going to make sure that you gain an understanding of where the other person is coming from before you make any decisions.
Further note to that make sure that you make a continuous process to ensure that you’re in alignment to borrow a metaphor from chiropractic people require continuous alignment, to borrow a Robbins metaphor you don’t tune a piano once and then never again. You don’t work out once and then you’re in shape for life. you don’t establish a vision once, you don’t establish an understanding once and then keep it at that.
Here’s a useful distinction what’s the difference between strategy and tactics versus Mission and strategy. It all really comes down to be levels of generalness you’re talking about if you’re talking about wanting to increase shareholder return well that’s a mission. If you’re talking about increasing your visibility to the marketplace. That’s a strategy, if you’re talking with getting into 16 different magazines that’s a tactic. So what we’re looking at is the difference between these three levels of abstraction. So yes, it’s good to have your mission to know why you’re doing things. Then you come down a level for your strategy, how are we going to achieve the things above and then you come down to tactics, how are we going to achieve those strategies we set to achieve our vision or Our mission statement
Really consider talking to PR agents do your homework first do your dream 100 figure out who your ideal clients are and go talk to a PR agency and say “here are the people who I want to attract, I want you to get on getting me in the publications that they read, to getting me on the radio shows that they listen to, to do anything to raise my profile to these people.”
So a great way to work strategy is to pick 3, 4 or five broad strategic things that you want to do: EG: increase your market visibility, increase education to your prospects, and increase retention and renewal. Then you take one of those areas and study it really hard read all the examples immerse yourself in one area and start to apply that one area to everything you do in your business, how does every piece of your business tie back to that one strategic focus and once you’ve done that, once you’ve documented and measured the results of that, then go on to the next and by doing that. You can start playing off of wins, you have your wins strengthening each other. So figure out what strategies will give you the highest result most quickly and with least effort and start doing that then use the windfall profits there to reinvest in the next and so forth until you’ve got so much new business and money you don’t know what to do with it all.
A part of your strategy should be the leveraging of the relationships that you have or you can easily create. He notes that there is always a market for lead generation there is almost a market for providing leads, so if you have a large number of leads if you have a core group of very happy people then you can make a lot of money through endorsements, through just providing their information, through referring them to other people, depending on the level of association you want to have with other companies, you can make a lot of money with this. So explore the relationships and explore different branches of the relationship. So can you offer something to their friends, can you get them to offer another service to their friends, things that nature
With the Abraham Encyclopedia, what were going to want to do with it is pick the area that’s best, whether it’s leverage, joint ventures, strategic alliances, strategy of preeminence, whatever it is look through and read all of the examples of companies that have used it, read through allof the examples where it’s come into play, so that it’s basically like you’re getting all of Jay Abraham’s experience, you’re getting that reference of the thousands of companies he’s worked with, getting good examples of every tactic, every strategy, that you can look at. So you have a 360 degree view of how this looks in various different businesses.
Look up “Idea consultant”it’s a term Mac used for a woman who just spouts off business ideas leftright and center I can identify with that and it’d be good to do a bit of reading and see what already out there, see what people in the field are doing One of Jay’s clients brokered selling accounting practices and what he’d do is two or three
times a year he’d take a list of 30,000 people send it out and say “We have 600 people who want to buy your practice right now. If it’s valued fairly, they’re willing to buy.”He’d get about 600 responses, and so send a letter to the other 29,400 saying. “We have 600 people right now who want to sell you their practice. Call for more details”very simple strategy, but it worked well and made him millions and millions per year.
A lot of times you can bribe people into doing a survey for you by offering them access to the survey results brilliant idea.
Surveys are also great because they’re helpful for helping you get published journalist love surveys because their factual, there’s an air of truth about them, so they’re no longer running anopinion piece; if you run a survey, now now they’re running a factual piece.
A great Jay tactic is a sequential mailing method where you send them something with your offer then a little while later you send out a second mailing. “Thank you to the overwhelming response to our first offer. Even though there’s been great demand to extend our deadline, we’ve decided to keep it fixed at this”It doesn’t matter whether or not there was overwhelming response, but if people think there was they’re more likely to hop on.
Mac proposes a very simple strategy for acquiring businesses and it’s just this. You go to businesses that you’d be interested in acquiring and you say to them “I know you’re doing really well, and you’re really excited with your business right now. And I think that’s great. But at some point you’re going to wake up in the morning and realize that you want to do other things. And when that happens, I want you come to me, because we can work
out a price that you’d be happy with between us and you can sell your business and go and do all those things you want to do.”This works great because you can put that seed out there in a few different places and your preprogramming them that they’re talking to you when they want to get out, and so you’re going to get a decent price for it
One of the most powerful things you can do especially in a small organization is to create a flow chart of how your business works. How do you get people in, what happens once they get in, back-ends, what ever it as from star to finish with your business flow chart out all the different areas and look at every area and note where your excellent where you’re adequate, where your good and where your bad. Get together the right people, it might just be you, it might be you and all your staff, might be you and pieces of your staff, and do a Chet style meeting a brainstorming style meeting, where you get all the ideas out for how you can improve it, then start putting it into play for next week and notice the ongoing improvement, work on it for a few weeks, and rinse and repeat the process. You can get very good in a very short period of time just by repeating this process.
Jay did a series of teleconferences and found that almost nobody took action until he did one thing he appointed accountability officer’s to everybody on the calls. And these people just called twice a month, and said “How’re you doing? You were on the call, you committed to doing these things, how’s that coming along? If you haven’t gotten it done, when are you going to get to it? I’ll be calling back in two weeks to check your progress.”The number one thing that happened with this is that the implementation rate doubled. So people did twice as much with these accountability officer’s, but what’s more interesting and more profitable that attrition went from 60% to 5% so these people kept coming back over and over again.
Strategy is only really necessary when you have scarce resources and are trying to deploy them in order to get the best results from those resources If you have infinite resources, you can just throw everything at the wall and see what works. One of the things that you’re looking at in strategy is “How do we take our limited resources of time, energy, money, equipment, space, whatever”, and deploy that we’re maximizing each and every one, that we’re getting the maximum return for each and everyone of of them.
If you have a fairly complicated presentation the best way to learn how to duplicate yourself so that others can do it is to tape yourself doing the presentation complete with slides and other visuals, get it transcribed then go through it and write down why you say what you said, why you do things in a certain order. So that when you’re training people, you can teach them not just what you’re saying but why you’re saying it. So some people might use your scripted presentation verbatim.Other people might not be able to do that, but they can be just as effective give by using the same structure and by using the same reasoning that you’re doing.
Lemberg talks about a level above benefits presentation, he calls it usage scripting. in any organization there are only a couple of real buyers or users of the product or or service and what you want to do is craft a different situational presentation or structure a script for each of them, so if you’re talking about a secretary using a a software program, and you’d say “Normally she does this and this, and this happens, and if if this goes wrong it could cost her a lot of time, it could cost the company money. What would happen if you had the ability to do this, which would completely negate that problem?” “Oh, that’d be great!”“Well, that’s one of the things that we offer. What about in this situation? Imagine what your business would be like if you could (insert functionality). Oddly enough, we offer that to.”So when you’re crafting it directly to the user experience, that implicit states benefits.
To go further with that what he suggests is basically the problems solving model. you talk about problems that they’re having, about things are going on in their department, or in their sphere of influence, then you summarize. “Just so I understand, this is currently the problem that you’re having, and it’s costing you this much.”And then you turn it right around, and say “So that’s what’s happening. If we gave you this feature, if we gave you the ability do this, would that solve that problem?”And they say yes, or they say no, but if it does, then you’ve got them buying into the sale. hugely powerful.
The Paddi Lund letter starts with “I’m closing my practice.”It should be available in the encyclopedia, it’s a great reference for just about any professional service. Great analogy for the proper use of strategy and tactics is this you don’t walk into Home Depot, pick up a couple of tools and then decide what you want to build first you decide what you want to build and then you get the correct tools and materials
Great point from Mac: he says the marketplace’s job is to hammer you down to a commodity level to hammer you down till you’re being Padi the lowest price. Your job is to redefine yourself and to change yourself into something completely unique. So that you really have no competitors, and there is no one to compare you to, so that you can express your unique value and get paid appropriately for it a good insight on the participants your clients values should be driving your business values and strategy. Know what your clients want know what’s important to them. And then make sure that your business fulfills on that the easiest way to write a column about your specialty or your expertise is to come up with a great headline the promises some benefit then have an outline that has three points or three main areas. Each of those areas should have three points. So basically you need nine points. you can write a sentence or two or three about each of those, then a little conclusion that’s your column, and that’s very sustainable you can do that over and over again very important point about incentives is that cash has no trophy value. you can’t take cash home and brag about it, you can’t show other people cash. You want something with trophy value, even even something like a gift certificate to a restaurant has trophy value, you can take your wife or family or friend out and talk about how you got this because X.
When you’re modeling successful players, what you want to do is shadow them, you don’t want to ask them anything, don’t have them tell you anything upfront. Watch what they’re doing and then ask them questions to solidify your understanding afterward. Remember what they’re doing is always to believe more than what the’re saying.
When you’re trying to systematize the process of your business, it really helps to have somebody interview you about what you’re doing, and it can just be that they’re asking so what do you do next and then what? Okay, so back at this level, take me deeper into it, what exactly do you do? It’s very helpful to have somebody else doing this because there’s something about us that we want to explain to people in a lot more detail what were doing than if were just asking ourselves or just doing it ourselves. So either get somebody or imagine somebody asking you why and explaining it to them so that you get a much more detailed and much more fleshed out picture of the processes that you’re drawing out. Checklists are crucially important for any type of systematized business which presents 2 things to me. number one start creating checklists for my own business number 2 create checklists for client businesses.
One of the most strategic things that you can do is find ways to shortcut, find ways to save time. One of the best ways to do that is to systematize recurrent process. If you spend a lot of your time putting out fires. If you spend a lot of your time dealing with other people’s problems, start recording that and transcribing it. So that if similar problems come up. They can just read the transcript, they can read the FAQ rather than bother you with the same problem.
There is definitely a case to be made that it is it value use of time for the company owner to call clients every once in a while just to get feedback. Not only does that allow you as an owner to ask more interesting questions than can be scripted, but it also conveys a sense of value or uniqueness on the people you’re calling. “Wow, the head of the company is calling me, I must be important.”It’s fantastic to do in moderation, you don’t want to spend your whole day on the phone every day, but once a week you might want to make 5 or 10 phone calls so you can keep your finger on the pulse of your marketplace, but also so you can connect with these patients/clients/etc.
It sounds corny, but it can be useful to create a poster that has the dollar value of different jobs on it. So you might have delivering parts $10 an hour. Bookkeeper, $15 an hour. whatever it is that you’re doing currently whatever needs to be done in your business, figure out how much it would be to outsource it. At the bottom of the chart put on the hourly value of you or what you would like your hourly value to be so that you can see the difference and where it is applicable to outsource tasks.
A great Mac quote “there is no such thing as cheap professional services. In the and you’re going to pay. You’re either going to pay up front a little bit, or you’re going to pay for shoddy service and that will cost you a lot.” There’s now a precedent in patent law thanks to Priceline.com that you can patent a business process and it may well be worth taking quite a bit of time to look into this and see what exactly you need to do to patent a business process,
Always keep reason why advertising in mind. Whatever you’re doing, make sure you give a reason for it. If you are going to sell a product without professional services from this point forward, your reason why is that you found that 90 it percent of people won’t use it properly, and that nobody has used it to its fullest potential. So with your professional services added to the product they can get 10 times the results they would get without it.
Your reason why should always or often talk about how if they don’t take your up-sell, if they don’t pay more money for the additional services, then you’re doing them a disservice. So it’s in their best interest to that they give you more money.
When you’re doing free introduction seminars as a way to bring people into your business you want to make sure that you utilize all of the people who show up as much as possible.This means going back and mailing and calling them many times over the next year. This means getting them to fill out a survey talking about why they came. This means potentially selling those names or renting the list. This means continuing to market to their specific wants and needs long after they leave that room.
If you collect email addresses, which in this day and age, you always should, look to set up the informational auto responders, much like David DeAngelo does. You don’t put an offer in each one, you might want to put an offer in every second or third one, but what you can do in there is short case studies, things like “Here’s the techniques that I wrote about a little while ago, but you might have missed”and “here’s how somebody applied X.”Things like this, which can for basically no money keep you in touch with your prospect list, are great if you’re using free seminars to promote your business one of the great tactics is to put a sticker price on it and then come up with a plausible reason why people are getting in for free. So if it’s going to an association, you say, normally I’d charge $300 for this so you can give it away to your people. As a$300 value to renew their contract or to do something with you, and they’ll be getting a$300 value seminar.
Read “how to get your point across in 30 seconds or less ”Short-book, I’ll get through it quickly, but it is of crucial importance to be able to quickly and concisely communicate the value that you bring Win your organization is still small then the strategy and the reason why for that strategy can all come back to lifestyle maintenance. In other words, making the founders rich. At the start when you’re dealing with two or three or a few friends That’s probably okay, because they want to get rich too. But once you have a larger organization. And need to get people
buying into it, then you really have to frame things in terms of benefit to the customer, frame things in terms of benefit to people. In making the world a better place. Otherwise, you won’t get any buy in.
Of course that’s a good thing to be thinking about even at the start.
A key element of your strategy is what is your value proposition in terms of price versus value. in other words, are you trying to appeal to the section of the market that wants the cheapest functional product, or for the mid-range, who are willing to pay a little bit more and get some hand-holding or are you trying to appeal to the people who want the Cadillac of services. The people who want to give you the most money for your product and who don’t want to have to think about it.
One of the things that’s very important for setting strategy and deciding which tactics to use to employ that strategy is the process of critical and creative thinking. the processes of divergent and convert thinking. So at the start of a brainstorming process. You want to be very divergent and nonjudgmental. quantity not quality of ideas is what’s important. getting out as many as possible. It’s in the next step that you converge down to a few of the superstar ideas and begin to talk about the pros and cons.
In the process of strategy and tactics setting, managed conflict can be a very good thing, as long as you’re clear about where you want to go. The question of how to get there is open for argument.
It occurs to me that a rereading of six thinking hats and some flashcards or review for the importance and purpose of each hat would be a good idea before creativity sessions like this.
When you’re looking ask your mission or your overall strategy, your reason for being, ask yourself first, what is your mission. Next, who benefits from that next who cares if it’s not fulfilled. ask how do you measure the success of your mission. Ask who is hurt because of your mission competitors are usually the number one answer here. Ask why your mission or strategy is important to you why are you doing what you’re doing. these questions will help you dig in deep to find an organizational reason for existing but also you as owner personal reason for being so you want to go through this deep questioning process with every member of your team and anybody who doesn’t align with you, You either have to converter jettison.
Or you change your self you’re not always right
One of Jay’s speakers was DanKnight. it may be a good idea to see if he has any materials available.
For more information on creative problemsolving go to WWW.CPSIconference.com
Loving what you do is one of the greatest competitive advantages that you can bring to the market place, because if you love what you do you’ll stay an extra hour. You’ll make an extra phone call you’ll work harder and longer in your business, and you’ll spend more time thinking about it and trying to improve it when when you’re not at work. without loving what you do. It’s very hard to be competitive at a high level in your business and working with other businesses you want to have your ultimate strategy clear so that you can measure any of the actions that you’re taking against that ultimate strategy and find any points of divergence.
When you’re interviewing people to come into your organization interview them like you’re getting married find out as much as you can and make sure that you get the perfect person hire the best and cry only once