Handling a number of businesses may seem too much, but that’s only if you don’t know how to do it right. Dive deeper into the business mechanics of your business and get to know the areas you need to correct in order to grow your business no matter the size. Ask yourself these five mechanical questions and find what needs to be addressed and improve. Become more efficient to tackle a number of business challenges.
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The 5 Mechanicals
Kerri and I have done quite a bit of international speaking this calendar year. We spoke on business in Cali, Colombia. We just got back from Monte Carlo and we are soon going to Shanghai. It doesn’t matter where we’re at. One of the common questions we get is, “How do you manage running 900 different businesses making money at the same time with only 100 employees?” That is probably our most commonly asked question. The second right behind it, and this question has been asked of us for over twenty years, is, “If you could give one piece of advice to an upstart, an entrepreneur, or even an existing leader in a large company, what would it be?” For years I have changed my answer.
I’ve given different answers, different settings. Sometimes I’ll shoot from the hip and go with my gut based on the audience. I’m not 100% sure yet but as I’ve scripted out this podcast episode 270 and the next one 271, I may make like a business card/note card on one side, one piece of advice. On the backside, it’s going to be the combination of these next two podcasts. I’m going to make a pretty bold statement that of over 200 podcasts, this podcast and the next one, when it’s all said and done, might be the most commonly downloaded and shared podcasts. I’m going to pretend here. “Ken, what one piece of advice would you give an upstart entrepreneur or somebody that’s been running a company for 30 years?͟
Expect meaning, expect results. Click To Tweet
There are ten questions that a leader, an entrepreneur, a business owner can ask themselves once a year that can completely change the course of that business on an annual basis. Some companies are so quickly growing. Take our company for example. Four out of the last five years, we have hit the Inc. 5000 list. That doesn’t mean we just stay on the list. It means we have to re-hit it every year. What’s interesting is we’ve rebuilt our company twice in that five-year period and we do not sell any of the same products that we sold five, six, seven years ago. How do you do that? I’m going to be comfortable distilling that question down into a long single answer with ten different components. I’m going to do five of those components on this episode and on the next episode, 271, I’m going to do the other five.
What Numbers Do I Regularly Measure, Inspect, And Claim?
I’m going to call this episode The Five Mechanicals. What five questions can you ask yourself that are purely based on business mechanics? They’re not philosophical. They’re not spiritual in the sense of every company, every leader has a spirit. A company has its own body, its own energy, its own culture. That’s what I mean by spirit. I’m going to jump right in. These are five mechanical questions that if asked and answered on an annual basis, can correct and grow any company of any size. Number one, what numbers do I regularly measure, inspect, expect, and claim? What numbers do I regularly measure, inspect, meaning check up on, expect, meaning expecting results, and claim? What numbers do I expect to look at, evaluate, judge, and then project and even claim like setting a goal and then claiming to your friend you’re going to hit that goal? What numbers do I regularly measure? Inspect, meaning I don’t just look at them and measure them. I inspect why they’re happening. Expect, meaning I expect these to grow and then claim that they’ll grow.
Who Is Measuring Me?
Number two, who is measuring me? What board of advisers is checking up on me? What accountability buddy, what mentor, what friend, what relative, who is measuring me? Who do I meet with at least quarterly where I’m explaining and claiming my goals to and saying to this person or group, “Would you please hold me accountable to these?”
Am I Holding Regularly Scheduled Efficient Meetings With Quantifiable Goals?
Number three, am I holding regularly scheduled efficient meetings with quantifiable goals? I had to put the word efficient in there. A lot of companies will realize if your meetings aren’t stand up meetings, that by default might show they’re not efficient.
Some meetings drag on and on and waste everybody’s time. Inside of these meetings that are efficient and quantifiable, there should be a review process or period of the previous meeting. There should be a discussion in the proposal section and then a claiming new section. If you’re going to have a meeting, you better be reviewing the previous meeting because the definition of a successful meeting is the booking of another meeting. Inside of an efficient meeting, you’re going to review the previous meeting. You’re then going to discuss and propose new agendas and then you’re going to claim new victories.
The definition of a successful meeting is the booking of another meeting. Click To Tweet
What Is My Annual Continuing Education Calendar Looking Like?
Number four, what is my annual continuing education calendar looking like? As an individual, as a leader, what conferences am I going to? Who is mentoring me? What new books am I reading? What consultants am I bringing in to enlarge the IP of my brain? If you have not read my previous episode called The Success Wheel, please do not read episode 271. Go backward and read The Success Wheel. On that note, if you have not read episodes one through 24 in that order, please do not read episode 271 before reviewing the first 24 episodes as they were built and expressly laid out on purpose to give you the foundation to understand and grow any business in any industry.
What I Sell And Hire The Same?
Number five, if I started over, will I sell the same and what I hire the same? If you started your company all over, if you started your division all over, would you sell the exact same product if you had the opportunity and the budget to start all over? Do you know in your heart that the market for these products is decreasing? If the difficulty to sell is growing or if the competitive nature is changing, would you start with a new product and would you hire each and every one of the same people you’re currently working with or do you work with some pain in the asses? Do you work with people you can’t stand?
If you started over, you certainly wouldn’t hire them. If your answer is,͞I would probably have a different product and I definitely wouldn’t have certain people with me,͟ that is the time where you, as a leader, look into yourself and you go to that phrase, ͞Leaders need to have the courage to change the things they can.͟ For episode 270, what one piece of advice would I give? It would be ask yourself on an annual basis the ten most important questions a leader can ask. I just covered the first five. I hope this helps.