Insights from 100 Ways to Create Wealth

Since I discovered the power of having my local library at my fingertips (via Hoopla), I’ve been powering through significantly more audiobooks on my ½ hr walk home from the office. I’m currently listening to 100 Ways to Create Wealth by Steve Chandler and Sam Beckford. If you haven’t read this book, I highly recommend the read. It’s a light read. Steve Chandler is a motivational speaker and coach in business. Sam Beckford is a very successful entrepreneur. Together, they have coached some very high-profile companies in the past few years. They’ve put together this humorous guide full of practical tips on creating wealth in your life. Most of these methods literally can be applied immediately in your work and even in your personal life. Here are my favourite three.

1. The Power to Reduce Friction

My first favourite corollary talks about looking for ways to reduce friction. As they say, time is money. Efficiency and streamlining processes are also money. Simply put, you don’t necessarily have to have a fabulous new, earth-shattering idea in order to make money. If you can reverse engineer something existing, but do it in a manner that eliminates little annoyances, it can be immensely valuable. This should hardly be a new concept. If you’re at all familiar with the world of IT, you’ll know that efficiency and streamlining processes is a multi-billion-dollar industry unto itself, known as Business Process Re-Engineering.

 

 

You probably already know that management consultants get paid top dollar to come into an organization and literally find ways to remove the annoyances. Their sole purpose is to re-design the process of doing something – anything to make it run more smoothly. It doesn’t take a world-renowned firm like a McKinsey or an IBM to send a bunch of stiffs in suits to do this for an organization. You can do this today in your very position, starting with your own duties. Then share and train your team. Then perhaps you might communicate it to other teams. Little do you know, that you actually might be the catalyst to spark positive change in your company. The seemingly insignificant waves that you set off amplifies as it reaches all corners of the organization.

 

You might think, “why should I put in extra effort? I’m probably not even going to see the benefit come back to me.” Here’s the rub. Not all benefits need to translate immediately into dollars and cents. But employing the mentality to strive for optimal efficiency soon becomes a habit to you. Then, you extend this to all areas of your life.

 

This is one reason why people commute to work via public transit instead of driving themselves. They can better use the time to read something instead of stressing out about traffic. This is also why people work out at lunch. I know I do. I get it. It’s usually pretty hard to get to the gym after a full day’s work when you’re rushing home to feed your family. After you get home? Forget it.

 

 

Once you’ve sat down to dinner, it’s impossible to peel yourself off the couch and go into the cold, dark night to the gym. So eliminate the friction. Go at noon. Make it a compact workout. Make those 45 minutes impactful. Way too many people take their time in the gym. They do their sets. The rest in between. They check their phone, then go and do their next set. Eff that. Stop wasting your time. Here’s what I mean. You can literally get twice the workout in by doing exercises that are new to your body. Perhaps incorporating explosive movements in your workout for a supercharged 45 minutes. Using plyometrics and super setting is another way to get a better bang for your buck… or in this case hour.

 

2. The Power to Astonish

Another corollary that sticks in my mind is to employ the power to astonish. Not all professionals are alike. Just because you are professional, it doesn’t mean that you’re a superstar. Ok. I feel that we’ve reached this moment in our relationship: Let’s get real. I spend hours writing quality material every week to support you in your jump to that second curve. And, well, if you’re not interested in being a superstar, I’m not interested in writing for you. If you are, let’s talk. Anyone can be a professional. But it takes a certain “x-factor” to be a superstar. In fact, there are various x-factors, actually, if you’ve been following me regularly. In this case, it is the power to astonish, according to Chandler and Beckford. The question is what can you do to wow your customer, be it an internal customer (aka. the business for which you serve) or an external customer… (aka. some new client from whom you’re looking score your next gig.)

 

baby orang-utan ITsolopreneurs How the 100 Mile Man Re-Defined Digging Deep

 

 

How does one ‘astonish’ a customer? In the brief years that I have studied marketing, one recurring theme prevails. If you want to astonish your customer, you must first understand his pain point. Once you understand what causes him pain, you then find an elegant way to relieve it. No, eliminate it. Eliminate it in a manner that not only makes the pain go away forever but gives him new benefit as well.

 

Case in point. On many projects of which I’ve been a part, documentation (or lack of it thereof) is always a pain point. The pattern is always the same. Consultants are so eager to parachute into an organization, implement the solution and leave. They spend most of their time in the implementation. They care much less about how well the client will be able to operate solution once implemented. In my 16+ years of systems implementation, I have rarely seen a project that was properly documented, with proper user guide documentation for the end users to easily continue.

 

Bearing this in mind, I seek to create helpful mini-guides for my clients. They love me for it. It’s one of the ways I do to astonish and delight them.

 

 

Now you know. I don’t mind sharing it with you because I know most of you won’t take the time of day to do it. That’s ok. I do it because it happens to play to my strengths, which is training. It might not be one of yours. You just need to find how you can wow your clients. It could be something as simple as being super-supportive and answering their questions or troubleshooting a problem for them. Whatever it is, think of how you excel and use that to go the extra mile.  Use that to give your clients that wow factor.

 

3. The Law of Cause and Effect

This afternoon as I was walking home I was on Corollary 53: The Law of Cause and Effect. Most people believe in luck and circumstance. Strong people believe in the Law of Cause and Effect. Peyton Manning is a prime example.

 

The worst case scenario in football is to have a game in the rain when everything is wet. Add to that Peyton Manning suffered a thumb injury, as the Colts entered Super Bowl XLI. Here’s the difference: Instead of succumbing to the crummy luck of an injury and the rainy weather, Manning committed to a ‘wet snap’ drill. Every day, he would practice with dripping wet footballs. He controlled the cause, instead of merely being at the mercy of the weather and hoping that fortune would favor them. Through his practice of wet snaps, he eliminated the weather factor altogether.

 

Photo Credit: http://nbcnews.com Peyton Manning

 

In the corporate world, we might not have to worry about rain and thumb injuries, but we happen to do a lot of presentations. We do even more conference room pilots and a plethora of solution demonstrations. I have a rule. If there is anything that would go wrong in a presentation, it will. I wrote about this intimately in my post 6 Ways to Screw Murphy and his Laws. I’ve learned that it doesn’t much matter how much you practice. Anything can happen when it’s showtime. The training environment might go down in the middle. Someone in your audience can ask you a question in the middle of the demo. You attempt to answer it, and you end up messing up your entire demo.

 

I’ve done a plethora of presentations and demos where it starts off well, but then something unexpected happens. The next step doesn’t go the way I practiced and I suddenly feel the stress. My ears go hot. I can feel the blood rush to my face. Palms start to sweat.

 

 

Nowadays, I have a new strategy of doing demos. I don’t ever do live ones. Instead, I record a series of video clips that demonstrate the function. I then embed them into my presentation. Then I can go through the presentation stress-free because I know exactly what will happen. I’ve eliminated the reliability factor of any training environment, the internet, and any other impromptu tangents that my audience might ask me to explore. Fail-safe.

 

The added benefit to pre-recording the demo and embedding them into your presentation is that you can now send it home with your audience. They can refer to it at a later date and not have to try to remember everything from that one exposure. Going back to astonishing your client, this is one way that you can wow your client. No consultant does this. I’m not sure why. It doesn’t take any more effort. Most just don’t care enough to go the extra mile to do this. I’m glad. Otherwise, you and I couldn’t use this to look a grade above them.

 

So there it is. A few pages from 100 Ways to Create Wealth. As you noticed, creating wealth doesn’t only happen in the entrepreneurial world. It doesn’t just have to do with additional ways to rake it in. It can apply to anywhere and everywhere in your life.


Also published on Medium.

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