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Power Of Edification
Something dramatic happened to Kerri and I. I’d like to explain it. You can then use this in your own business in many different ways. I’m going to start with this phrase, “Never a prophet in your own land.” When you own a company, no matter how fast it’s growing, no matter what your ideas are, you’re a prophet in your own land. It’s your idea. You hire a bunch of employees. They then hire more employees. You have different layers of management. The reality is and I’ve read many biographies that verify this, there comes a time in your company when all of the people following you start questioning you.
There are many different reasons for this and there are a lot of reasons that they should question you for sure. Some of you know the story that Steve Jobs from Apple and Elon Musk from Tesla have both been fired from their own companies only to be brought back in. Why did they get fired? Because these two people both admit, they started doing stupid things. They started thinking weird and it was their people that should be questioning them that triggered proper response and then it was proper to bring them back in. The concept is this, you are never a prophet, meaning having vision and forethought in your own land, always. There’s a word missing. You’re never always the prophet. Your people do respect you, they trust you, they follow you and some will take a bullet for you.
Change has to happen in a company and you are going to need someone whom your team trusts. Click To Tweet
Our company has 150 to 200 employees and we double every year. We’ll double again for sure. There was something I’ve been saying, and I’m not going to name the division or what’s been going on, but I’ve been saying for about a year that a division should be shrunk in half. For a year, I’ve gotten pushed back. All of a sudden, Kerri and I have lunch with one of these private equity groups that are trying to wine us and dine us because they want to buy a piece of our company. This young man sat in front of us. I had mapped out the business as I always do. He said something and I said, “You’re talking about mapping. Ironically, Kerri and I mapped out our business and did a macro look and this and that.” He goes, “Can I see it?” I said, “Sure.” I put it on the table, and I showed them the three different big divisions that overlap and then there’s one master division being built over all three divisions.
He didn’t even let me finish. He goes, “I can tell you that one division right there,” and he pointed to the top left circle. He goes, “Because of the market volatility and the market risk, I would shrink that division immediately.” Kerri and I looked at each other, and you could not have internally laughed harder. We smiled and we knuckled each other, and he caught the inside joke. He was like, “I think I know what’s going on here. You’ve been trying to enact this change for some time.” I didn’t tell him that we are not currently prophets in our own land. I came back the next day to our office and had a number of calls. I shared with them that one of the principals of Norwest, one of the larger private equity groups out there, after taking a valuation of our company thought that this one division should be trimmed down very quickly.
All of a sudden, because a principal of Norwest said that division should be trimmed down immediately, it was unanimous, “It should. There is market volatility. There’s a market risk.” Kerri and I looked at each other like, “You’ve got to be kidding me.” The concept of this show is about the word edification. Edification is when a third-party figure that is respected by title or position or in any way, shape or form respected by others says something, they are considered a prophet, a visionary, a foreseer because they’re not in the same land. They have a more global omniscient vision.
Here’s the key. I’m speaking directly to the entrepreneur that has a small, medium or a large team that knows they need to get the point across to their team, but they can’t seem to be getting buy-in. There is a simple move that I’m going to make for the rest of my life when I know that a change has to happen and I’ve been saying it for X amount of days, weeks or months and it’s not happening. I’m not getting the buy-in, and I can tell the more I talk about it, the more my team is going to rebel just like Elon Musk and Steve Jobs had. The magic move is I’m going to go out and get a third-party consultant that every person on my team respects and no matter what comes out of their mouth would be taken as gospel.
I’m going to get them to come in, and I’m going to plant seeds or propose options to see if I can get them and call out the statement that I want them to make. I’m not going to physically tell them what I want them to say. It defeats the point. It’s got to be genuine, sincere and proper. For those of you that read this, Ken Courtright is going to use this technique for the rest of his life. I recommend for those of you charging the hill that the power of edification is strong, I would urge you to go try it immediately and see how you can use it in your own company for growth. Take care.