Doing everything with quality increases your chances for success, enhances your reputation and saves you time in the long run. People typically equate quality with skill, but quality is a by product of time, thoughts and systems.
No ones likes the last minute rushing and headaches that comes with an urgent project. Seth Godin has an intriguing post Managing Urgencies. He concludes, “a career putting out fires never leads to the goal you had in mind all along”. This is exactly the reason to “Think” before you do. Here are three ways to avoid fire drills.
Focus on quality
1. Think in advance– Think about the right way to do it before you start any project.
2. Double check– Double check all your work before it goes out.
3. Audit– have an audit procedure to make sure you did it right.
Reign in expectations
1. Don’t over promise– Don’t commit the world if it’s not required. Know what you’re capable of. See what you have the time for and do your best.
2. Educate your customer– Let your customer, boss, spouse know how long tasks typically take so they can set their own proper expectations.
Control your time
1. Don’t overschedule– If you have too much going on you risk getting into a time crunch and startign a fire.
2. Don’t let others schedule for you– Don’t let others automatically schedule you. Sometimes it’s something they can do themselves- teach them how.
Make it your goal not to get in fire drills and you’ll be less stressed and more productive.
Michael Jordan can beat you at a game of basketball without trying. Donald Trump can find a better real estate deal than you with just a few calls. Jeremy Schoemaker can make money on a web site faster than you with minimal effort (and get other people to promote for him for free). Skellie can get more subscribers for a new site in just 5 days than you can in a year of trying. So how do they do it? Why is it so easy for them? The answer is they built a machine.
In this article I’ll outline how you can build your own machine. The concepts are simple but the results are long reaching. Building the machine may require hard work to create a foundation, but once it’s built you can achieve success without really trying. Follow the four rules below and your machine will give you long term, self-perpetuating success.
Is Trump smarter than you? Maybe, maybe not. But his machine is certainly better than yours for making real estate deals. Trump’s machine has many industry contacts to get him the right deals. It has his knowledge in evaluating deals. It has his financial backers allowing him to move on his deals. His machine has many parts to it that allow him to succeed almost automatically.
A machine is different than an experience. It’s built to have long term results. I may have bought a house once and certainly would have some knowledge of buying a house but I’m not setup to do deals consistently. It’s more than just being smart- anyone can take the time to read a book to get the essentials of success. It’s about building a foundation. It’s building the bank relationships. It’s building the industry relationships. It’s building a track record to make people want to invest in you. It’s building a staff that knows what needs to be done. It’s the mind set that this will be done more than once, so I should plan accordingly and not just get it done.
The Trump example doesn’t mean that you need to be big to build a machine. Being big can actually be detrimental if you don’t have your machine under control. Let’s take Skellie for example. Does she have a big organization behind her? No. Is Skellie a better writer than you? Probably, but not necessarily. She may be a good writer but there are probably a number of blogs that are better written than hers that don’t receive the attention she gets (I don’t have examples because those blogs don’t get attention so I haven’t seen them). So what is it that makes Skellie able to launch a site and instantaneously attract 1000 subscribers? It’s her machine of course. Her machine is her ability to use her creative talents and harness loyal readers. Her machine includes the loyal readers she built up at Skelliewag. It includes her contacts with other bloggers. You get the idea.
Building a machine requires a commitment to quality otherwise your machine will work against you and create problems instead of solutions. Success requires that you solve the problem. That you create a process to ensure quality. That you review your open commitments so items don’t slip. A well built machine does the same thing over and over again.
Skellie didn’t take shortcuts by sacrificing quality in her content. Quality takes constant introspection and improvements. For example, Skellie batches her writing to one day a week (in advance) and has a system to deal with writer’s block. Skellie has found the way to keep creating quality content and her machine helps her achieve success.
How does Paris Hilton have the resources to continue her escapades? Simple, she’s an heiress to the Hilton fortune. The money in her trust is her machine. The money that built her nest egg just keeps earning more money with little effort. Some people are lucky enough to take advantage of other people’s machines.
A machine simplifies a process and makes success self-perpetuating. It provides a road map to the future and provides the tools to get there faster. This is what makes Success Making Machine special. It’s not merely a few helpful tips, it’s something you can build on.
Even when I’m old and grey, I won’t be able to play it, but I’ll still love the game.
I’ve always told people that to be successful you have to enjoy what you’re doing and right now I really enjoy what I’m doing. I’m having too much fun with my life. Why would I want to do something else? Why would I want to run for governor?
Enjoy your work and you’ll never work a day in your life. If you asked Trump or Jordan to do what they do for free, they would. With dedication like that it’s no wonder they overcame the obstacles in their way.
You can build your machine to eliminate the tasks you don’t like. Machines can do the heavy lifting. I’m sure Trump isn’t interested in the nitty gritty of making his deal more tax effective, but people in his machine take care of that for him. Always enjoy the journey.
The Right Way to Build a Machine
Building a machine is a conscious decision to create a quality focused, automated system for the long term for something you enjoy. Using these principles helps you realize your efforts today can have huge long term ramifications that can improve your life. Once your machine is built you can just live on the interest- without really trying.
What kind of machine do you want to build?
Think about your goals. How can you make a quality machine that self-perpetuating built for the long term?
Now, look at the principles to building your machine.
Photo by: Coda