When it comes to starting a business, and growing out of an idea it can be easy to get lost in the money in money out mentality. Suddenly every expenditure you make keeps you awake until 4 in the morning, and every sale you close keeps food in your fridge for the next month. What is sometimes overlooked is sustained growth and the best way to focus on that is to identify 4-10 activities you need to perform in order to generate business.
These activities will all be linked to their own KPIs (key performance indicators) and thankfully you can access an entire library of them at http://www.kpilibrary.com for free if you don’t know where to start.
With Follow The Hummingbird we have two KPIs we actively work on:
Coffees per week
2nd meetings per coffee
we discovered early on these engagements directly correlated with our growth. On good weeks we had lots of coffees and lots of second meeting conversions.
Identifying the activities you need to spur growth and creating a quantitative model to measure from makes growth feel achievable—suddenly you aren’t looking at a vague concept but hard numbers.
Listen to the most recent episode of my podcast: Interview with Nicole Allen from SPARC https://anchor.fm/followthehummingbird/episodes/Interview-with-Nicole-Allen-from-SPARC-e3j6ho
I put out my video on how important it is to have a recharge day and one of the comments I received was how do I find motivation to finish a large project.
This was in response to me announcing that book 2 in the Beds Are For Flowers went live for pre-order and they wanted to know how they can fall back in love with their own manuscript. They wanted to find that motivation to revisit their writing after taking an extended break—a break they took in the first place because they felt they needed to recharge.
This may sound counterintuitive but I think one of the best ways to find motivation is lowering your expectations. When we lower or reduce our goals we create this glut of free time that reenergizes us. Think about it, by cutting your goals in half you basically double your time. You turn lofty goals into manageable ones and rather than stressing about deadlines you hit them and exceed them.
For example when it comes to writing a first draft I operate on a daily 2,000 wordcount goal. I had to build up to that on the backs of smaller victories (500 words a day, 1000 words a day, 1500 words a day). This is arbitrary. There are authors who are far more successful than me, who write more or less than that word count goal.
For someone just getting started this may feel overwhelming. One of the fastest ways to give up is to put yourself in a position of failure, or to make yourself feel overwhelmed by unreasonable goals. Operate around small measurable goals that you can build upon. If you wish to write a book in a year make it two. If you wish to write 2000 words a day, make it 500.
These small victories will create a snowball effect. The point of setting these small goals is not to stay there. When you meet these goals you will find a second wind—suddenly everything on top of the goals becomes icing and you are so excited to not just meet your ambitions but exceed them.