Today’s post comes from Norm Bour, a blogger with the NewportBeachPatch
Many business owners know what they know, but sometimes do not know what they do. I have seen this several times in the past few months so I don’t think it’s an aberration. I believe it’s a prevalent- and unnoticed-dilemma.
A client, a stone mason, stated in his elevator pitch what he did; he worked with stone. But after drilling down a few levels we found out that he was one of only two people in the entire country that had the ability to laser engrave into any thickness of stone- or any hard surface. He could do surfaces that were only ½” thin and not have to work with heavy and large pieces or worry about breakage. As we in the audience listened to him share his story, we realized, and eventually he realized, that he was more than a stone mason. He was an Artist; an Artisan. And he needed to market himself that way.
A student came through one of our programs stating he was a CPA, bookkeeper and tax preparer. And he mentioned he worked with nonprofits and helped them stay in compliance and take care of their accounting. Seems he was previously the CFO for Easter Seals for 7 years, worked with Head Start and had written grants up to $40M. After we told him he was wasting his time doing taxes and similar work that many, many other were able to do, he started his own company, NonProfit DevelopmentAlliance, and now instead of working for one Easter Seal, he is helping to create hundreds
of them. The entrepreneur inside just needed to be unleashed and trained and we have now partnered with him to run our nonprofit division. It took him awhile, but he, too, realized that he was distinct and was in a class by himself.
Our Filipino student was involved with not just one, or two, or even three, but with four different projects and had a hard time focusing on any one with intensity. As it worked out, two of her ventures were very similar and by focusing some attention to those opportunities is now concentrating on just them and putting some other aside. She knows how to import and export from the Philippines and deal with all the red tape and that is a rare and precious skill set that she needed to focus on. Her income potential is significant and when she has consistent cash flow, then she can play with her other projects.
How do you determine where to place your efforts?
Create a “silo” or category for every business you have and ask yourself:
What percentage of my time do I spend in this venture?
What percentage of my income do I currently receive from this venture?
If I focused everything on this venture what percentage of my income could I make just from this?
On a scale of 1-10, what is my level of passion for this project?
On a scale of 1-10, what is my potential for massive income for
As you go through this process you will identify some possibilities that you may have ignored or not maximized and you may find that there is gold much closer than you realize. Don’t be afraid to question yourself or ask “what do I really do?” The answer may surprise you.
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