“What is the ultimate quantification of success? For me, it’s not how much time you spend doing what you love. It’s how little time you spend doing what you hate.”
1: Tony Caldwell was stressed and burned out at work.
Tony had a knack for developing insurance agencies in the insurance distribution space. Like many entrepreneurs, he knew his business cold. Backward and forward. Inside and out.
And yet, there are only 24-hours in a day. There are only so many things we can focus on in a given day. As the visionary for his company, every minute he spent doing non-visionary tasks, his company suffered as a result.
Then, Tony learned to ask: Who not How, write Dan Sullivan and Ben Hardy in their book of the same name. When a new challenge or opportunity came his way, rather than ask: “How am I going to do this?” he began asking: “Who are we going to get, either internally or externally, to make this happen?”
The result: Tony’s company doubled forecasted revenue over the next three years.
“They just needed Tony to stop doing all the Hows and have the time and space to dream up a bigger future for the company,” Dan and Ben write. “He now inspires and supports his team from a distance, and finds incredible opportunities he couldn’t previously see to invest in.”
2: One change Tony made? Turning over his email to his executive assistant. After an initial transition period, she assumed 100% ownership of this task. This change has “expanded her opportunities and responsibilities, and she became more capable and successful as a result.”
We get the life we tolerate, Dan and Ben tell us. “How [we] spend every second on this planet matters.”
So, where do we start? With small wins, the authors tell us. “Start by simply eliminating all tasks or distractions that are unnecessary to [our] future self. Often, we engage in tasks simply out of habit.”
3: As part of his Strategic Coach program, “Dan has developed a process that he calls the Moving Future, which helps people maximize their time every 90 days.”
Here are the four questions on the one-page Moving Future process:
* Looking back over the past quarter, what are the things you have achieved that make you the proudest?
* What are the current areas of focus and progress that make you the most confident?
* Looking ahead at the next quarter, what new developments, projects, or goals are giving you the greatest sense of excitement?
* What are the five new “jumps” (progress) you can now achieve that will make your next 90 days a great quarter regardless of what else happens?
Dan and Ben predict that doing this exercise consistently will build incredible momentum in our lives. We will enjoy the progress we are making and increase our motivation for the future.
The reality is we can’t achieve our big goals in a single day. Some of our goals may be so big that they will take years to achieve.
“Even still, [we] can make massive progress every 90 days. Breaking down [our] goals into 90-day increments is good for focus and motivation,” write Dan and Ben. We “can make tangible and short-term progress, and then look back every 90 days and measure tangible progress. This gives a sense of movement and momentum.”
Which forces us to become more intentional and better with our time. Every 90 days, by deliberately embracing the Who not How mindset, we begin to eliminate tasks for ourselves “by adding Whos to better handle the Hows,” the authors write.
As we make progress every 90 days, our confidence will grow. Our vision will grow. Our desire to add more Whos will grow.
Step one: Get clear on the projects we want to take on over the next 90 days.
Step two: Ask, “Who can help me accomplish this?”
Dan and Ben challenge us to add at least one Who to our goals in the next 90 days. By adding a Who, our commitment will increase, and our behavior will improve. Doing so increases our confidence we can achieve bigger results.
For Tony, the results have been life-changing. Before learning about Who not How he was on the verge of retiring. Now he’s been re-energized. “It’s almost like I have a whole new life given back to me.”
Reflection: Do I have a process where I look back each quarter on what I’ve accomplished and outline my biggest goals for the coming quarter?
Action: Answer the four questions on Dan’s Moving Future tool.