What if you ran your life like a CEO runs his company?
And no, I don’t mean being an autocratic tyrant dictating edicts from on high?
I mean, what if you were a compassionate visionary leader who had a mission, servicing customers who love you and your product, and maybe even had stakeholders who were invested in your long-term success?
I mean, what if you took extreme ownership of your life in the same way a visionary leader takes his little garage-based business to become a global leader? Think Apple or Amazon.
How did would your life be?
What a Business is in 5 Simple Steps
Josh Kaufman, in his book, The Personal MBA, states that a business is not complex, in fact it is so simple you can’t describe in 5 processes.
Roughly defined, a business is a repeatable process that;
- Creates and delivers something of value…
- That other people want or need…
- At a price, they’re willing to pay…
- In a way that satisfies the customer’s needs and expectations…
- So that the business brings in enough profit to make it worthwhile for the owners to continue operation.
That’s great for business Chuck but how does that apply to my life?
A Successful Happy Life in 5 Simple Steps
A profitable business is the same thing as a successful life.
- You live a life of service…
- That other people want or need…
- At a wage or price, they’re willing to pay…
- In a way that everybody is happy…
- And allows you to take in more money than you spend for the quality of life that you want to live.
If more people organized and ran their life as a business owner, there would be more happy successful people around.
Think about it in this way, in a private business, the founder, owner of the business serves two groups of people. She sells to customers who want her products or services. With customers, she is able to build and hire a team. But if she doesn’t run her business well, both groups can fire her at any time.
Customers who are not happy with the products or services, may buy once but may not come back to buy again,
And employees and team members fire their bosses all the time by quitting the organization or not giving their full effort while there.
And it is similar for publicly-help companies who have one group to add to the equation, the shareholders or stakeholders.
The shareholders are those individuals that are willing to stake some, or all, of their resources to help support you and your service.
They put their trust and faith behind you to help you to create a greater impact. They want to see you grow and become more successful so that they can share in your success.
And hopefully, you attract the type of stakeholder, who has your long-term health and sustainability in mind, rather than short term financial gain over personal cost; think Warren Buffet, not Bernie Madoff.
How to Apply a Business Model to Life
For many people today, their lives are relatively simple. For the most part, they have a job and they need to provide for themselves and that’s about it.
You have a customer to serve, somebody who is taking money out of their pocket and putting it into yours. And like the first process of business, you either create and deliver something of value, or you don’t.
The value you deliver from your work needs to satisfy your customer, the boss, enough so that it fulfills a need or want that he is happy to pay you.
And as long as you don’t spend more than you make, you can then take that money and invest it for your future.
But rarely is life that simple.
Shareholders and stakeholders loom on the horizon.
You may meet a romantic partner that you want to live with for an extended period of time. With romantic partners, sometimes children come into the equation. And with this more complex arrangement comes larger purchases and the stakeholder of credit agencies, credit ratings, and time & money management.
Now your little private business has become publicly-held.
And during all of this, the key to success is to bring in more money than you send out so that you have something to invest toward your future.
Jocko Willink, veteran Navy SEAL, business coach, and popular author and podcaster wrote the book, Extreme Ownership. In the book, he discusses how to be a great leader so that you can develop great teams.
Too many people, want to blame exterior forces for their lot in life. So consciously or not, they give up ownership to create a positive or permanent change in their life.
Business owners go out of business all the time. Stating a business is rough, there’s a fickle customer base, ruthless competitors, rising overhead costs and employees who may not show up for work.
But none of these factors stop people from trying. In fact, the SBA estimates that in the US, 627,000 small businesses open each year. Unfortunately, about 595,000 of them close also. But that leaves roughly 32,000 business who make it that year.
People taking ownership of their lives to make it better, even knowing the odds are stacked against them, extreme ownership.
The Key is Being Able to Build a Team
Navy SEALs will sometimes train for 18 months for a 6-month deployment. They will invest literally hundreds of hours honing their skills to be able to work together seamlessly.
That’s what makes them so formidable.
They recruit only the highest caliber people who are capable of operating effectively under stress. And they build trust, comradery, and habits that allow them to intuitively know what each person is doing.
Great teams do that.
So do great businesses.
And so do great personal families.
They have a mission, they know who they are meant to serve, they focus exclusively on being of service to that group. And they enroll team members and stakeholders who can support them in that role.
What type of team can you build to make your life a success?
- A financial advisor for short and long-term investments
- A CPA or accountant to track and monitor your finances
- The best possible medical doctor you can find to keep you healthy
- A lawyer to help to protect and buffer you in a litigious society
- An executive coach to help you go further than you could imagine
- A loving family that allows each member to live life to the fullest
- A mastermind of like-minded people to support and nurture each other
I’ve got my team, do you have yours?