How To Get Big Rewards?

Most sane people are afraid of problems and tend to avoid them. From evolutionary perspective that is something that helped us to survive. I don’t go further into examples or explaining the reasons why, I’m sure you can do the math by yourself as you have come to read this blog.

But what people don’t often realize is that where there is a problem – there is money waiting to be made.

The bigger problem solved – The bigger reward obtained

In short: if your job is to solve small problems you likely get paid little:

Cashier vs. CEO
Nurse vs. brain surgeon
“I only work here” vs. “I will do what it takes to make this company profitable”

If you manage to solve complex and big problems with good track record, you most likely are rewarded well. It is not a coincidence that intelligence (which often equals to the ability to solve problems) correlates with a good income and financial well being.

Easy to replace = lousy rewards

I urge you to make a status check: would you love to solve bigger problems and get a better reward? Are you willing to rise above mundane? Do you have the brainpower to go to markets where majority of people are afraid to enter and prosper: like sales, marketing, strategic planning, leadership?

If you come up with “yes” – that is your first problem to solve!

  • What kinds of problems you want to solve,
  • who has these problems,
  • and how to connect and convince these people that you are the right person to do that?

There is always a “but”

Inspiration and determination will take you far, but it is not all it takes. Nor is the general intelligence alone a guarantee to prevail. In order to be exceptional you also need tools, experiences, and networks:

  • The tools you can study from blogs like EBL, professional books, courses, schools, mentors and educational videos for example.
  • The experiences and merits you gain only by trying hard, and by trial and error – just go and do stuff you feel passionate about. Passion, mission and vision give you extra strength. Money alone is almost never the best motivator, although it sure makes life easier and more enjoyable.
  • Networks help you reach the people and opportunities that are in need of a problem solver. Get out of your comfort zone and meet people: both online and offline. Face your fear of rejection and never surrender to it. First it hurts like hell, but with time you get used to it.

Think about it: Are you using all of your potential or would you like to win more? If winning is your choice, do what it takes to be Ever Better!

Lets recap and go a bit deeper – in order to solve big problems and get big rewards you must find out:

  1. Who you wanna be
  2. What kinds of problems you want to solve and how you plan to do it
  3. Who has these problems
  4. and how to connect and convince these people that you are the right person to do that?

Step 1. is your vision and mission
Step 2. is your strategy
Step 3. is your target audience
Step 4. is your marketing and sales tactic

You have just created your personal business plan, so now go and execute!

Head there; where problems cause despair!

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Inspirational Image: Get Massive Results!

I recently started Grant Cardone’s great book “The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure“. The book is very testosterone filled motivational self-empowerment sales book that is not meant for those who do not aim to dominate the market they operate at.

After listening 80% of it I have encountered several empowering quotes like:

“Massive results require massive actions.”

“Duplicate the actions and mindsets of successful people and you will be successful!”

Or

At this point (80% completed) I dare to recommend “The 10X Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure” for those who fear not to play hard and to set the bar high. But if you feel that being an average is enough for you, I think it is better to focus on reading something else. Do that what makes you happy!

Grant Cardone is rated one of the top most influential 10 CEOs in the world , author of 5 business books, international keynote speaker, and and an active CEO of five privately held companies that do 100m in sales.

 

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To Excel Now And In The Future

In my opinion

If we are truly interested in the organizational growth and excellence, it is crucial to tap into collective wisdom and to the brainpower of many. Modern leadership is not about forcing people to execute one’s vision. The more there are brains working to solve problem, the more likely it is that the best solution is found in a shorter time. This is pretty simple math.

It is also good to note that by committing employees to the company – by letting them co-create the vision – the leader is not deemed to take all of the pressure of the progress by him- or herself.

To excel now and in the future

  1. The organization must get better in the things it is good at
  2. The organization must be willing to try learning, creating, and innovating something new that has demand I.e. someone is willing to pay for.
“Our belief was that if we kept putting great products in front of customers, they would continue to open their wallets.”
Steve Jobs

What if the organization focuses just on the another one?

If the organization focuses on just getting better in where it is good at, there will be a time when our product/service will be obsolete. Think for a second about Kodak, Blockbuster, Reader’s Digest…

“Intellectual property has the shelf life of a banana.”
Bill Gates

If the organization uses too much time just on innovating and never releases a product or service, there is a risk that someone will go out and steal the business opportunity. It is also possible that in reality there is no market available or the world just is not ready yet for the product/service. The latter two scenarios usually happen only if the strategic market research has been done poorly.

Timing

“Observe due measure, for right timing is in all things the most important factor.”
Hesiod

It is absolutely crucial to understand that the timing is the most important factor in business and growth: because customer demand is the key factor. Even if we had the perfect team with the perfect idea, business-model, and execution, there is no value without demand.

The role of an ever better leader

  1. The great modern leader is a servant of employees,
  2. who creates an atmosphere of trust and fellowship,
  3. where passionate people are able to reach their potential,
  4. with proper incentives to make miracles happen
  5. while making sure that the company is profitable.
“Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.”
Henry Ford

* : Co-creating the vision can get awesome results, but only if the organization is a high performing one. If people are not passionate and fully committed, the leader’s vision is crucial for the organization to survive. In an organization that is reactive and lacks motivation, the leader should first uproot possible organizational primal fears and increase motivation and happiness as I have written earlier. Then it is time to communicate the personal vision until the organization is ready to be co-creative.

This posting was inspired by my experiences and by the following TED Talks:

And as a curious reader bonus here is a checklist you can share, print and check all that apply:

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Primal Fears – Why Some Organizations Never Manage To Thrive

I want to share you something I bumped into as I was listening the awesome book “The Coaching Habit”. A great abbreviation “TERA” was mentioned, which contains the source of our primal fears that guide all of our actions.

“run, fight or die” mode prevents higher level of thinking

To try to put it in short: in fMRI scans scientists have found that our brain asks 5 times per second if there is something to be afraid. And IF there is, we enter into “run, fight or die” mode that prevents higher level of thinking and tapping into the collective wisdom the situation might hold. In the state of primal fear, our world is black and white and filled with adrenaline. That is something we might be able to use as advantage in certain situations, like public speaking or a bar fight, but not in a daily life of a high efficiency expert organization.

“Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear.”
Mark Twain

The abbreviation TERA comes from the words Tribe, Expectation, Rank and Autonomy. The following summaries are my own interpretations and the official explanations may vary. But these I find simple enough to remember and easy enough to understand.

TRIBE

Do you feel yourself as a member of the group or do you feel as an outsider? Being an outsider is usually not an enjoyable state of mind, because from evolutionary perspective an outsider presented threat. *

EXPECTATION

Do you know what is coming next, or are you afraid of surprises? In the past surprises could mean danger and that is the reason why we subconsciously are terrified of possible unexpected events. That is why routines, plans, to-do lists, agendas, road-maps and written strategies make us feel more secure.

RANK

Humans are very hierarchical mammals and have highly developed sense of estimating who is the leader and so to be respected. Luckily these days the leader does not usually attack you physically – at least in the western business world – but weak leaders might do it verbally when feeling threatened. That leads us to the autonomy…

AUTONOMY

Due to the hierarchical nature of our species we are super cautious when there is someone ranked above us in a situation. Especially if he or she has a reputation of having a big ego and a tendency to punish those who do not agree with him/her. We ponder our words carefully and speak only if there is no imminent threat. Some brave souls are so self-confident that they might have guts to open their mouth even if there is a possibility of humiliation or confrontation. That happens usually in one of the following cases:

  • The individual feels that the leader is weaker than him or herself.
  • The individual is equipped with shitloads of testosterone (boosts self confidence I.e. why young males are often those who are not afraid of positional leaders).
  • The individual is facing a situation where their values are threatened and they are willing to die because of them – even though metaphorically.
To sum this post
  • Fear is something that should not be present in any organization.
  • Learn to know people your work with, that generates the feeling of being in the same tribe.
  • Make agendas for meetings and road-maps and strategies for organizations.
  • Egoistic people – and especially leaders – are always bottlenecks in organizational growth and big-time success and should be either educated or let go if they fail to see their bad behavior.
  • By subscribing to Ever Better Leadership Blog you will gain the necessary information on how to make your organization thrive by removing primal fears to the degree it is possible:

THE ONE EXCEPTION WORTH MENTIONING

There is one special type of people who do not follow the normal rules: narcissists. They are beyond the help of mortal men and should be left to be dealt by HR-department or mental health care professionals. In these rare cases I strongly recommend to relocate as far away as possible. Luckily only around 1% of population have narcissists personality disorder. Although there are some recent articles that indicate that narcissistic behavior has risen during the birth of social media.

* For more information about neuromarketing you can read the awesome Brainfluence. It is filled with great neuromarketing insights.

Disclaimer: this article is a mixture of content from The Coaching Habit as well as my own research and reasoning. The text should not be considered as a psychological playbook of any kind, but rather as a simplified tool to understand how human brain is working in situations where primal fears are involved.

 

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My TOP 5 tips to boost and increase effectiveness

Whether you want to get to your goal faster, to have free time for something important or just to be more productive, there are several great ways to boost effectiveness. I have read pretty much about the topic and also done some testing with myself and at the time of writing this blog, I think these five are the best boosters suitable for me. Maybe also for you? So try them out and feel free to share your experiences or your personal suggestions for increasing effectiveness / productivity.

  1. Get enough of sleep

    This is by far the most important single factor. Being tired feels like shit, makes people more prone to accidents, reduces motivation and lessens cognitive skills. I am super aware that it can be really hard to get the usually required 7.5-8 hours of sleep, but it really is worth a try if you want to be the best you.

  2. Do the hardest/shittiest task first thing in the morning.

    Studies have shown that we have limited amount of willpower to be used daily. And EVERY decision drains it, meaning: if you use your willpower to solve petty problems first thing in the morning, it is not getting any easier during the afternoon or evening… Unless you get some rest. Pro tip: Arrange all the important meetings late afternoon, but make sure you get an hour of rest before that meeting to fill up your willpower.

  3. Do NOT open e-mail/social media first thing in the morning.

    Do the step two instead. This might sound stupid as “surely little Facebooking can do no harm while drinking morning coffee?” WRONG! You are using your best time to learn and study for utter crap. Stop it. Read something important or listen to an audiobook. If you’re not spending your mornings in a smart way, in a week you’ll have spent easily few hours just idling around reading pointless status updates.

  4. Do a list of things that matter today…

    This week. This month. This year. In five years. During your life. Start to build it backwards. I.e. think what really matters to you. What you want from your life. Then think how you can advance that in the next five years. And in the next following year. In a month. In a week. In this day. During the next hour. Focus on your list of things that matter. And start it now.

  5. Turn off e-mail notifications and check mail only once in 2-3 hours – the longer interval the better for the quality of work.

    E-mail is a great servant but a terrible master. If you let it pace your day, there is a big risk that you’ll just end up running around stressed and losing the focus on the things that really matter. Respect the list you made in step four.

As a bonus tip I would recommend trying out meditation. Tim Ferris says in his book “4 hour work week” that approx. 80% of the top leaders he has met do some sort of meditation or mindfulness practice. There are also huge amount of evidence and studies that show how meditation improves cognitive skills and helps to reduce anxiety. This can really make a difference to your well-being. But be prepared: regular meditation can cause big things to happen in your life. Luckily they usually are positive after the dust has settled down.

Ever better wishes,
Jukka

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