Seeking the Minimum Level (Excerpted from the Money, Meaning and Beyond Book, Chapter 18)

People are creatures of habit.

After hearing the same lessons about business for so long, we can tend to accept them without questioning. After doing things the same way for so long, it can take a little shock treatment for us to stop.

However it’s important that we do, because far too many business owners are chronically tired and overworked, yet are still trying harder to do more with their energy and time.

The old way of thinking and old habits can be very costly – to both the success of your business, and your overall happiness.

May I ask:

Do you invest too much energy into tasks that aren’t worth it? Are you using a lot of time on a project that could be done with much less?

If you have a tack in front of you, you wouldn’t use a power tool to put it in, right?  It would be a massive, disproportionately powerful tool to get the result you want.

This can be a difficult one, but try to develop an awareness of how to apply just the right amount of energy and resources to the appropriate tasks.

If you’re used to providing a full-fledged proposal for a client, would a two-page summary work just as well?  Do you send over five possible ideas for how to ‘redo the living room’ when 3 would be equally delightful to your clients?

When you write emails, do you always proofread and double-check before you send out?  If you’re doing a series of follow-up calls that are administrative in nature, could an assistant do the trick?

You get the picture. Experiment with the minimum level.

Based on experience, we estimate business owners waste an average of 20-30% on tasks that would be just as gone and just as complete, if they’d leave well enough alone.

Seeking the minimum level definitely goes against the grain at first, because business owners are used to working hard, and racing to keep up.

Take a moment now to think of just one thing that you could work a lot less hard at to complete, or better yet, one thing you can take off your ‘To Do’ list entirely.  Will you share? Please post your comments

Doing More with Less | Excerpted from ‘Money, Meaning & Beyond’ Chapter 11: Gravy Pans

by: Andrea J. Lee

I’d like to ask you the question again if I may … even though it may be hard, take the question seriously for a moment.

How can you get 10 times the result with half the amount of effort?

It seems paradoxical, but the very act of asking an outlandish question like this can open us up to new possibilities.  In this case, we begin to sense that somewhere, there may be a path that we haven’t discovered yet. One that allows us to get more of what we want, whether that be more time, results, meaning, money or something else entirely.

One thing we seem to know for sure is the path is very likely NOT a straight line.  There’s NO logical progression from point A through point Z.

No, there’s a less linear way of looking at the issue of getting more done in less time.

The invitation here is this:

Reconsider how you can do more with what you’re already doing.  And in doing so, recognize you’re getting a lot more done than you think. The thing is, getting more results with less effort doesn’t have to be hard.

Yes, it seems odd, but relax a moment and see what happens. Relaxed is the best state to be in if you’re going to try and transform an old way of thinking.

The thing is, getting more results with less effort doesn’t have to be hard. Here’s an example:

  • Let’s say you’re roasting a chicken; one of those wonderful activities that shines a light on things that matter:  a great meal, conversation, laughter and family.
  • While you’re roasting a chicken … what else can you think is happening inside the oven?
  • If you said gravy’s getting made, you’re right.  When you’re roasting a chicken, even though you’re not making any extra effort, you’re also making gravy by catching the drippings in a pan.
  • But – this is true only if you recognize the value of the gravy.  (Some people miss this, and throw out great gravy, right?  That’s because they’re so single-mindedly focused on roasting chicken.)

With this example in mind, let’s try the invitation again.

What if you are already getting a lot more done than you think?

This isn’t just a fancy way of describing multi-tasking either.  It’s actually a shift in the way you look at what can be considered productive activity in your business.

What are some ordinary activities you do in your business, that bring with them unexpected gravy?

How can you create more results with the same (or less) amount of effort?  And how can these benefit you in your life, business and health?

As a leading business owner in your field, you might realize the unexpected truth that you’re further than you think in finding ways to ‘make gravy’ in your business.

It’s a fantastic time to solve this frustration.  What can you learn from our non business coaching colleagues and implement into your business to eliminate these problems and frustrations moving forward?

Tell me, what do you hope to learn and also remove from your business in order to provide the level and flavor of coaching your clients most want?