Staying persistent and positive are probably the two most important things for entrepreneurs to do. Sometimes this is difficult when facing 100 NOs in a row. However, if you understand the law of averages in the scenario you are facing, 100 NOs may mean you are 90% of the way to YES! Staying persistent and positive after each NO is easy if you know this ratio up front.
This is more or less the insight I gleaned from reading a blog post written by the founder & CEO of Buffer, Joel Gascoigne. Joel calls this concept Ratio Thinking. He states:
As soon as I accepted that the whole world works in ratios, that’s when it became easier. Knowing that success happens in ratios allowed me to go ahead and send that email, without worrying about not getting a response, about ‘failing’.
Read Joel’s full blog post here.
My Example of Staying Persistent and Positive Using Ratio Thinking
Applying Joel’s thinking to my situation right now was easy. I write one blog post everyday. I have done this for 50 days in a row at this point, with today being my 51st day. Looking at my numbers, I have had 14 breakout days where visitor traffic spiked. Using Joel’s ratio thinking I now know that it takes about 4 days to have a breakout day.
Now, I can stop worrying about my traffic numbers everyday. I can also stop feeling disappointed when I write a post that doesn’t breakout. Instead, I will stay persistent and positive each day. I will keep my focus on writing inspiring and insightful commentary and let the universe take care of the rest.
Can using ratio thinking change your outlook on something? Can it even change your life? Maybe, maybe not, but it’s worth a try. What ratio can you find in your life that will help you stay persistent and positive? Please share.
Low hanging fruit is not as good as the fruit at the top of the tree. True of false?
The answer is not what you think because obviously I’m not talking about real fruit. I’m talking about the fruit of your labor. In this case, the answer is true and let me explain why.
We all know what the metaphor of going after low hanging fruit means. It means eliminating the most difficult, risky opportunities and instead perusing the easiest opportunities. The problem with this is that the most difficult and risky opportunities are where the biggest wins live. At the top of the proverbial tree is where greatness is achieved. It’s where breakthroughs happen.
Going after low hanging fruit as a practice eliminates the possibility of getting a breakthrough. Going after low hanging fruit will guarantee an extraordinarily ordinary life. Going after low hanging fruit amounts to settling for less than the best.
With that said, their is a logical argument for the low hanging fruit approach. It’s that going after it is just a step in the process. However, how many times do you think people settle during this step?
Examples of When You Get Stuck with Low Hanging Fruit
- Taking a job for the sake of a check instead of figuring out how to get the job you really want
- Staying on a career path that pays well but makes you unhappy instead of finding out how to turn your passion into the career of your dreams
- Settling for a mediocre offer instead of negotiating for the offer you really need
- Staying in an unfulfilling relationship instead of facing the fear of going at it alone
- Only going on dates with people who ask you because of your fear of getting a no from the man or women of your dreams
It’s likely you know someone who is currently settling in one of the above situations who initially planned to keep working their way up to the fruit at the top of the tree. Take head and don’t fall victim. Sometimes it’s best not to waste a step in the process with the fruit that’s easiest to get as that fruit just might be the fruit that poisons your future.
Are you a small business or entrepreneur? This is a very intriguing question. Intriguing in the sense that most small business owners would call themselves entrepreneurs, but not all entrepreneurs would call themselves small business owners. Not even if their revenue is small enough to qualify as a small business in the traditional sense.
Seth Godin touches on this topic on his blog in a post titled So, what’s wrong with small business? Godin states:
The distinction I’ve always made is that an entrepreneur is trying to make money while she sleeps, and does it with someone else’s money! That she builds a business bigger than herself, that scales for a long time, that is about processes and markets. A small businessperson, on the other hand, is largely a freelancer with support, someone who understands the natural size of her business and wants to enjoy the craft of doing it every day.
I think it’s critical that you know what type of business you are building. This will drive many of the trade-offs you must make in your business.
Here are three example trade-offs driven by the small business or entrepreneur choice:
- If you need money to start, do you find an angel investor or get a loan? Entrepreneur – angel investor, Small Business – loan
- If you are not technical, should you find a technical co-founder or outsource? Entrepreneur – co-founder, Small Business – outsource
- Should you spread into multiple steams of income or focus on one core? Entrepreneur – focus, Small Business – multiple streams
Read Godin’s full post on this topic on his blog.