This post is about a handful of rules I have tried to adopt when evaluating new opportunities. I don’t want to “fight” the bright shiny object syndrome as many new ideas are worth pursuing but this post is about how to “control” the urge to start too many different things!
Chasing the bright shiny object is a big part of what I do but I can’t endlessly pursue every exciting opportunity.
So this post is about a handful of tricks I use to try and determine if an idea is worth pursuing or not.
First Step is Admitting We Are Not Rational! In a perfect world I would put each new project on a list and use some calculation of NPV or IRR and determine the priority of the project. However, my brain is not that rational… the emotional side will skew the assumptions to the point that these calculations will turn into highly precise but inaccurate BS so I have made a handful of rules that try to trick/use my emotional brain to come up with an efficient way to get to the right decision on pursuing an opportunity or not!Continue reading
Like most of us with an entrepreneurial leaning I enjoy listening to a lot of audiobooks and podcasts related to business and self-improvement.
There is one recurring message from wildly successful people and many success guru’s… FOCUS!
In this post I am going to argue why I don’t think the focus on a single business is the optimal strategy for many. It may be the right strategy for some but based on my goals (and depending on yours) I don’t think it is the right strategy for everyone. Continue reading
The day I forgot my sons name was a wakeup call that my work/life balance, or whatever you want to call it, was seriously out of whack!
It was a few years ago and during one of my VERY busy times at my previous day job (80+hrs/week for 2 months) my wife was 3 weeks from her due date with our first child and I was hoping to be done the project that had me busy before she popped.
We were woken up very early that it was go-time and baby was not waiting for 3 weeks and was on its way now.
It was an incredibly exciting day having our first child born! Even during that day there was still time I put into the day job with calls from work needed to keep the project moving in the field.
Doing a little work in the delivery room wasn’t the embarrassing part (although it should have been) the embarrassing moment/wake up call came the next day…
Everyone was doing well and I was heading back in to work with the intent of getting some critical information handed over to the team, grabbing my computer and heading back home to spend a couple days with my wife and son.
My plan was to slip into work quickly get done what was needed and get out.
However, as I rounded a corner several of the ladies on my floor swarmed asking questions, I got most of them…
“yes everyone is doing well”
What is his name….
(oh crap – I draw a blank!)
So feebly I say…
“we haven’t named him yet”
A blatant lie, maybe it was the lack of sleep, maybe it was my wife convincing me she thought we were having a girl or maybe my mind being focused on the 10 critical things I wanted to get done quickly before getting home. But regardless of my weak excuses the fact is that in the first 24hrs of parenthood I had a serious parenting fail!
Reflecting on it shortly after it was clear that for me to be the parent I wanted to be devoting as much mental energy as I was to my day job would always leave me with less capacity then I wanted/needed for my family!
It is tough to say when the idea of working for myself running an online business became more than an idea and turned into an obsession but I think this point is likely as good any!
So ~3 years later I quit and am now running my online business full time. (full story here)
It didn’t happen overnight and took many years of working the schedule outlined below but the goal was achieved…
Below is a side by side comparison of my schedule when I had my day job and now when I am working online full time.
I still work a lot of hrs but I am able to shift a good chunk of hours to spending time with my family in the afternoon to do fun activities!
Breaking down the hours by activity this is the result…
I don’t intend to say that my current schedule is better than my previous one for everyone or even that my current schedule is ideal for people. Many people would still think I work too much and don’t have enough fun/socialize time in there but for me the ability to have the freedom to design the schedule that is best for my family and me is a very clear improvement in quality of life!
If you are working towards a similar goal hopefully this post shows the level of effort that needs to be sustained and for how long to give you an idea that it won’t be easy but it is possible!
As I have talked about I recently left my day job and started working from an office on my online business full time.
With my new schedule I have tried to make myself as productive as possible.
This (intentionally short) post is the 3 keys I have found to ensuring I have a productive day…
This post took ~8 years to write!
It is with great satisfaction I announce that the goal I set for my family has now been achieved and I have left my
9-5 7am-6pm day job to pursue online entrepreneurship full time!
This is the start…big stuff to come!
This post covers…
For everyone their reasons are a little different. Some people want to become digital nomads mine came down to wanting to…
This Table Scared Me!
Green = Years Worked at Day Job
Yellow = Years Left to Work!
My Age at Retirement = 65 & My Oldest Kids Age = 36
One of My Main Reasons Explained with Pictures...
I enjoyed working with most of the people I worked with and my direct reports and manager were all exceptional so I did feel a little guilty about leaving them. In addition I had made some great friendships over the last 7 years and as part of this change I will be leaving my current city.
However in the end it felt awesome! This was a goal which became an obsession for the last few years and achieving it was incredibly satisfying for everyone involved!
My manager was incredibly understanding and treated me much better than I had expected.
One interesting note was that all the coworkers that I considered as really strong performers were positive/encouraging while many of the “B team” employees were scared for me and couldn’t understand giving up the security!
With changes come new challenges, to be honest these I am afraid of and I won’t know if I overcome them or not for a couple years. I hope AuthorityWebsiteIncome and my monthly reports will help me have the discipline to ensure these fears don’t become a reality.
From working with people I have found there are plenty of things people are a lot better at than I am but if there was one thing that I continually seem to be able to bring to a business it is this repeatable system…
My Process for Getting A Lot of Work Done Systematically:
1. Identify need/problem (me, project manager or one of my team leads)
2. Create a quick procedure for it (me, project manager or one of my team leads)
3. Assign it to a team member or hire 3-5 people on UpWork.com (project manager or team lead)
4. Assign the (potentially new) team member to execute the created procedure and work together to improve it (project manager or team lead)
5. Manage the change to the new procedure (project manager or team lead)
6. Begin executing the procedure (new team member)
7. Improve & Track Desired Results of the New Procedure
Executing this boring series of steps repeatedly over the last 8 years has built up a team with team leaders responsible for results and managing their team as they see fit (hiring/firing), weekly reports and a pool of great A players who I can leverage for any new project. Plus most of the processes in my business following a decent procedure.
If you are struggling to get your business setup with a team and systems I highly recommend you give the above 7 steps a try!
To everyone who has visited this website, emailed me, supported the business (even when you thought I was crazy – wife) been a customer of one of my services or responded to a question thank you!!!
If there is ever anything I can do to help you (visitor) achieve your goals with your online business please do let me know!
For those of you looking to make this same jump happen I hope that this post provides some insight into my mindset as I journeyed through my online business up to this point. If you can take anything away from this that increase the chances of you achieving what you are after or shortens the 8 year journey I took I would be very happy.