Wow. Chuck Blakeman’s clear.
That’s the first reaction when I read Part 1 of his first book: Why Making Money is Killing Your Business: How to Build a Business You Love and Have a Life, too. Part One is titled Get Control - Conquering the Tyranny of the Urgent.
The biggest urge I had while reading his book and preparing this review is just to cut and paste whole sections of it, pasting it here and standing back and going...'Nice, huh?' The whole book's like that. Here's another sample:
I think businesses should grow up...I don’t mean “it would be nice if it happened.” I mean we should all, everyone of us, expect our businesses to grow up and start giving back to us and to the world around us. We should assume that at some point our business would move from survival right through success to significance.
BOOM! As I read that portion here again, I had to ask myself:
- What part is not clear?
- What part do we see being implemented in the majority of companies?
Not too many, right?
Nobody would argue with me that we should intend for our children to grow up, leave home, and become grownups we could enjoy for decades, but when was the last time we had a similar conversation about our businesses? It’s normal for children to grow up, so why isn’t it normal for businesses to do the same thing? Frankly, we’re in charge of both of them at birth, and if you’ve had kids, you’ll know that you’ve got more control over the maturity of your business than the maturity of your kids
I'll say it again: boom!
And, see? That’s a paradigm shift using an excellent metaphor. Raising children to be adults you can enjoy is like growing a business to maturity, one you can step back and enjoy. Children come home to share their excitements and achievements and sure, a few setbacks - it’s life we’re talking about. Your business should do the same.
Chuck does more than offer a simple paradigm shift before kicking you out from this reading nest to either fly or die. He shows how to move your daily meter from the Tyranny of the Urgent to the Priority of the Important. Simple, yes. Crucial, very. That’s how you move off the Treadmill of Making Money and through the 7 stages of a business from Concept & Start-Up through Survival and Subsistence to Success by Walking Around, Significance and arriving at Succession. He shares examples of clients who walked that walk with him, through all 7 steps and others who...didn’t. Real crisp, concise examples too including the client’s words. Oh, and actionable steps that you can do...today. Consider the Three Life-Changing Steps and the 3to5 Club...no, you’ll have to read it.
Naturally there are potholes and places to get waylaid and he helps you avoid those and keep walking through those 7 stages until your ‘baby’ is ready to walk and live on its own. And you have a life again and your business is something to enjoy, like your kids when they grow up.
All in all it’s sort of a Dr. Spock and The Common Sense Book of Baby and Childcare but for business owners and their businesses; and this one works. In its first fifty-two years Dr. Spock's book sold more copies than every other book except for...The Bible. I’m thinking that given the clarity of writing and the proven, doable steps that Chuck shares in Why Making Money is Killing Your Business ... that he deserves sales second to...what Good to Great by Jim Collins? That would put sales for Chuck's book at around 3-4 million. That sounds right.