January 2019 – Letters from Lisa

I realize there are lots of potential goals in business but I, wrong or right, always assume businesses want to grow. With that in mind, growth always starts with the belief that it’s possible.

Once you have belief in the growth potential of the business, action must come next. This includes action from you and all those on your team. Your action is the key to focusing on the right information in the right order—much like the combination to a safe. You cannot attract abundance without taking action. Unless you are doing at least one material thing each day to move your business forward, you are never going to grow your business as quickly as you could.

I’ve always been a firm believer that one of the simplest and most important secrets to success in any discipline is ACTION, just the simple act of doing. Leadership is essentially nothing more than swift and responsible decision-making that in turn creates consistent action. The research shows that often the most successful people are those that simply tried many different approaches until they found one that worked.

What is a material action?

Material action is something that has meaningful revenue or profit implications from its output.

On the revenue side, it could be things like launching a new marketing campaign or making a new sales call, ideating a new product line, expanding to a new target-customer or geographic market, hiring a new salesperson, holding a producer meeting, etc. Anything that will drive new revenues.

On the profit side, it could be things like cutting your cost structure or improving your business efficiency. Or, it could be improving your company morale and productivity or similar tasks. Anything that will drive higher margins for your business.

On the flip side, there are a lot of demands on our time that are important but are not material action. These are things like posting to social media accounts or writing a new monthly email newsletter. Or, it could be managing the ad agency, doing one-on-one meetings with direct reports, running payroll checks, upgrading systems, relocating the office, etc. Yes, these are important tasks that need to get done. But none are going to propel your business to the next level.

What to do to achieve material action?

Where are you spending the vast majority of your time? If you are not spending at least 20% of each day on “material actions” you will not have a reasonable chance to grow your revenues and propel your business to the next level.

I encourage you to keep a TO DO list that is divided into what I like to call normalcy versus material action. In my opinion it is very easy to stay stuck in normalcy all day, every day. This list approach helps to remind us of the material action we need to take and jolts us into realizing that we aren’t on the right track when we review it EACH WEEK.

So, what else can you do today to take some action?

1. Choose something today and take action immediately!
2. Don’t get stalled by negative feelings of ‘fear’ or ‘what ifs.’
3. Don’t worry if your idea is not 100% perfect – it never will be.
4. Remember to be open to different outcomes and to relax and enjoy the productivity of ‘DOING SOMETHING’!

I guarantee you that by taking action and DOING SOMETHING (no matter how small) you will come out feeling positive, enthused and energized – so do it now!

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