Is your thinking holding you and your business back?
Have you accidentally built a business model which feels more like a treadmill than a ramp?
I’ve just read an excellent blog from The Launch Coach, Dave Navarro and I wanted to share a few of my own thoughts on the ideas.
In a treadmill business, despite your best efforts your business stays flat. For every gain you make, you take a step backwards elsewhere.
In a ramp business, everything you do builds on each other creating step changes and significant progress over time.
Now unless you’re very comfortable where you are, it’s pretty clear you want a business model which ramps up and doesn’t trap you running hard on the treadmill.
Continuous Improvement (Kaizen) versus Step Changes
I am a huge believer in continuous improvement and the cumulative compounding effect of small changes.
Did you know that if you improve your profits by just 1% per week, you can double your profit in a year and a half – and not the two years you might first think?
Or if you can make changes to create a 2% change each week, it only takes 9 months?
The Rule of 78 is a simple shortcut to estimate the impact of compounding – divide your improvement rate into 78 and it will give you the number of compounding periods needed to double.
A 10% increase per month means your profits will double in 7.8 months – say 8 months – check it out on a calculator it’s 1.1 multiplied by itself seven more times.
In contrast a step change is a sudden big jump – one change (perhaps as simple as adding an upsell to an offer which adds 20% to your bottom line) which can increase profit by a big step in one go.
And it’s very nice when it happens but it’s tough to keep coming up with changes dramatic enough to create big steps in profit performance. After all if it was easy, your profit would go through the roof.
It’s not the approach and whether you look for continuous improvement or step changes that matters most.
Are You Thinking Big Enough?
It’s how you think that’s the key and the goals you set for yourself.
I’ve had two reminders of this today. At lunchtime I interviewed Michael Port for my small business membership website Your Profit Club. Michael became known as “the guy to call when you’re tired of thinking small” and has gone on to write “The Think Big Manifesto”.
The point Dave Navarro makes is similar… that small incremental thinking is holding back your business.
If you think in terms of small changes, your mind subconsciously restricts itself to small ideas.
And small ideas (badly implemented) trap your business on a treadmill and don’t create the ramp business model you want.
Challenging yourself to big improvement goals opens up your mind and prepares it for change.
Your brain knows that you can’t double your profits without doing things differently… but you can increase your profits by 10% by doing things a little bit better or working a little bit harder.
That’s why the aim for my Eight Pillars of Business Prosperity covered in my Profit Club is focused on doubling your profits in 8 to 12 months.
Is it easy?
No and especially if you don’t take action and make many changes.
But it is possible – I firmly believe that just about every small business is sitting on a goldmine of unexploited opportunities for what I call hidden profits.
You just have to be ready to think big enough to look for them.
I talk about doubling your profits as a big goal, Dave Navarro suggests challenging yourself to triple it.
The target is up to you – it has to be big enough to stop you thinking about little tweaks that play with your business around the edges so you create profound change in your business and the knock on benefits into your personal life.
How Do You Get On The Ramp?
It starts by wanting to be on the ramp.
Really wanting it.
The kind of wanting it that makes you take action rather than sit back in your comfy chair and dream about having more money and the good life.
You can get the business knowledge by joining Your Profit Club as a silver member. The Eight Pillars of Business Prosperity is a comprehensive program to get you from where you are to where you want to go and the knowledge bank is getting bigger each week.
For some highly motivated people, knowing what to do is enough… they can then do it.
Many of us require more and that’s why I recommend you join a small business mastermind group.
Working with four to seven other people who are trying to do similar things to you without directly competing is such an amazing experience which impacts how you think and what you do every day.
I started one mastermind group earlier this year for a group of coaches and information marketers and the effects have been great. (see what my mastermind members say).
In the next few months I am going to start several more masterminds because combined with my Profit Club I believe the format provides an even better return on your time and investment than one-to-one coaching because of the shared experience of working with a group.
Research shows coaching is great but the mastermind dynamics are different and there’s the peer pressure to achieve your SMART goal each week.
My mastermind format is very simple – the group meets virtually (currently via Skype) each week at a set time for one hour and we each have time to ask and answer questions of the group and commit to achieving one goal which will move our business forward in the next week.
We also use a web platform to keep in touch during the week and to add further details or share extra ideas between our group get-togethers. There’s also individual contact between members when wanted.
There is a small monthly charge since my role in these groups will be as facilitator and expert adviser rather than participant and of course it’s covered by my 500% return on investment money back guarantee.
Winners join mastermind groups and people who join mastermind groups are winners.
There’s a cause and effect which creates its own virtuous circle of success and you don’t want to be left behind.
At the same time, when the going does get tough, as I’ve found out through my serious illness this year, the mastermind group is there to support you.
This first group has made a huge impact on the way I think and feel about my business and is a constant source of inspiration.
If you’re interested in joining one of my small business masterminds then please:
- Join my email list on my Small Business Mastermind blog – that means I can tell you about the new groups and when they start. Some will be based around particular trades and professions and others around particular business issues e.g. a lead generation mastermind
- If you are really keen, email me at email@example.com, introduce yourself and tell me what type of mastermind you’d like to join.
Alternatively you may prefer to meet locally over a meal and mastermind with a group of other small business people. One of my mastermind group members Heather Townsend created the Executive Village which could be ideal for you.
I started this blog with two questions so let me finish the same way.
Are you ready to think big?
Do you want a business that’s built on a ramp rather than one feels like a treadmill?