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Finding Your Master Metric to Help You Achieve Your Goals

Master Metric

When you have diluted focus, you get diluted results.

And it’s easier than ever before to be distracted.

You think “Oh, I’ll just check a quick email.”

But then somehow that leads to Facebook and then to YouTube and then to an hour later you’re watching a video about how to make a giraffe costume.

That’s why we, at Southwestern Consulting, often promote the concept of having a Master Metric.

Your Master Metric is your lynchpin activity.

It’s your keystone goal.

It’s your primary focus.

Your Master Metric is the one controllable activity that if you focus on it and accomplish it, that all of your other goals will come true as a bi-product.

This concept was first introduced to many of our coaches when they began their career in sales working for Southwestern Advantage.

Back in those days the Master Metric was 30 demos a day. They promised us that “if you show the books to 30 families every day you will have a successful summer.”

They said “it may not be true on any given single day but it will always be true over the course of the entire summer. Because it’s not the theory of averages; it’s the law of averages.” They were right – and it’s probably why the program is still around after 160 years!

When we started Southwestern Consulting our Master Metric used to be “2 Strong.”

The way it worked was we would get 1 point for setting an appointment and 1 point for running an appointment and every day we had to get some combination that added up to at least two.

It was our minimum level of acceptable performance.

When I was pursuing the World Championship of Public Speaking, I set a goal to practice each of my speeches 21x in front of live audiences prior to the competition.

Each of these are great examples of a principle we believe in at Southwestern and that we promote heavily with our coaching clients which is to put your self-esteem into your work habits and not your production.

The concept is to focus on what you can control and let the results and outcomes be the bi-product.

The benefit is that it keeps you zoned in on the right thing: doing the work it takes to be successful.

And that’s a good thing because if your self-esteem is in your results, rather than your work habits, then it tends to be an up and down inconsistent roller coaster of emotions.

But when you’re focused on the work, you’re always consistently improving your skills, skewing the averages in your favor and increasing your self-confidence which all inevitably point to an increased likelihood of eventual success.

And reducing it down even further to a single Master Metric increases the likelihood of your success even more because it improves the concentration of your focus.

It doesn’t mean you don’t track other things. It doesn’t mean you don’t monitor other indicators.

Most of our coaching clients have 6-9 CSFs (Critical Success Factors) that we measure. But whenever we can, we try to find one that is the special Master Metric. If you’d like help finding yours please click here.

But no matter who you are, what industry you are in, or what your goal is, you should ask yourself “what is my Master Metric?”

“What is one thing that is in my control that I can focus on achieving that if I do it consistently and repeatedly, over the long term, it will help me intimately accomplish all my other goals?”

That will help you win.

That will help you become a master.

THE BLACK DOOR – Dealing with Fear of the Unknown

the black door

The very first day I ever learned about Southwestern and began interviewing to work in the student program (way back when I was in college), they told me that the journey would require me to learn to master overcoming fear.

And they handed me a piece of paper to take home and read that night. From that day until this, I’ve never once forgotten about the unique lesson.

Here is what the paper said:

Several generations ago during one of the most turbulent of the desert wars in the Middle East, a spy was captured and sentenced to death by a general of the Persian army.

The general, a man of intelligence and compassion, had adopted a strange and unusual custom in such areas.

He permitted the condemned person to make a choice.

The prisoner could either face the firing squad or pass through the black door.

As the moment of the execution drew near, the general ordered the spy to be brought before him for a short, final interview.

The primary purpose was to receive the answer of the doomed man to the query: “What shall it be—the firing squad or the black door?”

This was not an easy decision and the prisoner hesitated, but he soon made it known that he much preferred the firing squad to the unknown horrors that might wait for him behind the ominous and mysterious door.

Not long thereafter, a volley of shots in the courtyard announced that the grim sentence had been fulfilled.

The general, staring at his boots, turned to his aide and said, “You see how it is with men: they will always prefer the known way to the unknown. It is a characteristic of people to be afraid of the undefined. Yet, I gave him his choice.”

“What lies beyond the black door?” asked the aide.

“Freedom,” replied the general, “and I’ve known only a few men brave enough to take it.”

Paraphrased from Don McCullough, Solana Beach, California, quoted in Leadership, Winter Quarter, 1992, p. 57.

6 Elements of Great Communication with Dianna Booher – Episode 203 of The Action Catalyst Podcast

Diana_Booher

Dianna Booher is the bestselling author of 47 books, published in 60 foreign-language editions, with nearly 4 million copies sold. Her personal development topics include leadership communication, executive presence, writing, and life balance. Her most popular titles include:

  • Creating Personal Presence: Look, Talk, Think, and Act Like a Leader
    • What MORE Can I Say? Why Communication Fails and What to Do About It
    • Communicate With Confidence: How to Say It Right, the First Time and Every Time
    • Speak With Confidence: Powerful Presentations That Inspire, Inform, and Persuade
  • Communicate Like A Leader: Connecting Strategically to Coach, Inspire, and Get Things Done

National media such as Good Morning America, USATodayThe Wall Street JournalInvestor’s Business Daily, Bloomberg, Forbes.com, FOX, CNN, NPR, Success, FastCompany.com, and Entrepreneur have interviewed her for opinions on critical workplace communication issues.

Keynotes, consulting, and training clients include IBM, Exxon Mobil, JP Morgan Chase, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, BP, Chevron, Conoco-Phillips, PepsiCo, Novartis, Honeywell, Merrill Lynch, Department of the Navy, and NASA, just to name a few.

She has been inducted into the Speakers Hall of Fame by the National Speakers Association. Success Magazine has named her to its list of “21 Top Speakers for the 21st Century.” She also appears at #54 on the Richtopia “Top 200 Most Influential Authors in the World” list (2017).

Show Highlights:

A leader improves the situation beyond what it was when they took over. @diannabooher

A Leader improves the status quo. @diannabooher

People micromanage because of fear and misunderstanding. @diannabooher

Micromanaging is a sign that a leader hasn’t developed the necessary strategic perspective. @diannabooher

Leaders need to think strategically about the long-term effect of their actions. @diannabooher

The one question every leader must answer correctly: “What are you working on?” @diannabooher

On social media: have a strategy, choose your channels, be consistent and engage. @diannabooher

People have to take responsibility for their own career development. @diannabooher

Fire people to be fair. @diannabooher

Great communication must be clear. @rory_vaden

Great communication must be concise. @rory_vaden

Great communication is consistent. @rory_vaden

Great communication is strategic. @rory_vaden

Great communication is always straight forward. @rory_vaden

Great communication is servant minded. @rory_vaden

Learn more about Dianna and check out her book by visiting: communicatelikealeaderbook.com

The Action Catalyst is a weekly podcast hosted by Rory Vaden of Southwestern Consulting every Wednesday. The show is regularly in the Top 25 of Business News Podcasts, has listeners from all around the world and shares “insights and inspiration to help you take action.” Each week Rory shares ideas on how to increase your self-discipline and make better use of your time to help you achieve your goals in life. He also interviews special expert guests and thought leaders. Subscribe on iTunes and please leave a rating and review!

Meet the New Southwestern Consulting

Over the years, we’ve learned from customers that there is a specific reason why they choose to do business with us instead of our competitors. They’ve helped us understand that while we do help them grow revenues, increase sales, recruit and build sales forces, and help them achieve their goals-there is also something else inherently unique and different about our team and culture that makes them work with us.

They said that it’s because:

We don’t just teach people how to sell more; we teach people how to sell better.

We teach people a different way of selling.

We teach salespeople how to sell ethically, honestly, and without shortcuts.

We teach salespeople how to be better listeners, not just better talkers.

We teach salespeople how to be more service-minded, not just better closers.

We teach salespeople how to take pressure off of people, not put more pressure on them.

It’s true.

We teach people and businesses how to sell more. It’s the core of what we do.

But we also care just as much about teaching them to do it the right way. This is because we want to help the world think about selling as one of the most honorable professions there is, and not just think of it as a job.

We love sales.

We love salespeople.

We are salespeople.

And like you, we believe there is a higher purpose you can serve by being in sales, which is why we are happy to share with you and announce the core essence of our rebrand.

You will see this new mantra integrated throughout our brand new website, videos, social media presence, and all of our updated marketing collateral.

We don’t just teach you how to grow your revenues or increase your income; we help you:

ELEVATE SALES.

P.S. – Thanks to all our customers and fans for all your love and support throughout the years! We hope you’ll take pride in being part of this new brand that we’ve created for you. Check out our new website at southwesternconsulting.com.

Become Successful Faster

Become successful faster

“How do I become successful faster?”

It’s a common question people have. Especially if they’re just starting out in a new industry or pursuing a new dream.

The intention behind the question is usually very pure and humble and coachable.

But the answer is more simple than most people want to hear and so it sometimes gets overlooked.

For years I’ve wondered if this truth transcended across multiple industries and different professions.

Now via Southwestern Consulting having worked with more than 8,000 teams in 40 different countries, I’m convinced that it is.

The way to become successful faster is to master the fundamentals sooner.

That’s it.

That’s really all there is.

See, when we’re first learning something, we are enamored by the excitement of it all and we want to believe there is some secret.

We hope there is a magic trick that we need to discover.

Sometimes we even idolize industry legends thinking that they must have a set of strategies that are only shared among elite secret circles.

But that’s not how it is.

Really.

The reality is that almost every job, dream, business, or venture has a handful of fundamentals.

These fundamentals can usually be explained in a matter of minutes.

But they usually take a matter of years to master.

You have to master the fundamentals.

You have to be brilliant at the basics.

You have to be committed to the critical success factors.

Sometimes new people wish there was more to it and so they waste time looking for the shortcut.

And sometimes experienced people forget how critical the fundamentals are and they get lured by the “shininess” of chasing something new. Often only to lose valuable momentum and later end up having to be humbled back to the basics.

The shortest path to success is to master the fundamentals sooner.

Even if you’re not convinced that it is; do it anyways and then once you’ve mastered the fundamentals, then you can worry about innovating and experimenting.

But the longer you wait to embrace the fundamentals…

The more you spend time looking for the easy way…

The deeper you become convicted that there is a shortcut…

The longer it will ultimately take you to become successful.

As Zig Ziglar used to say, there is no shortcut to success; you have to take the stairs.

The Potential Principle and Bettering Your Best with Mark Sanborn – Episode 202 of The Action Catalyst Podcast

potential principle

Mark Sanborn, CSP, CPAE, is president of Sanborn & Associates, Inc., an idea studio dedicated to developing leaders in business and in life. Mark is an international bestselling author and noted expert on leadership, team building, customer service and change.

He has created and appeared in 20 videos and numerous audio training programs. His video series Team Building: How to Motivate and Manage People made it to the #2 spot for bestselling educational video series in the U.S.

Mark’s list of over 2600 clients includes Costco, Enterprise Rent-a-Car, FedEx, Harley-Davidson, Hewlett Packard, Cisco, KPMG, Morton’s of Chicago, New York Life, RE/MAX, ServiceMaster, ESPN, GM, IBM, Avnet, Sandvik and John Deere.

Show Highlights: 

The only thing holding you back from getting better is the lack of desire to do so. @Mark_Sanborn

Strength overused becomes a liability. @Mark_Sanborn

Use all four areas of the potential matrix to create synergy in improvement. @Mark_Sanborn

The path to improvement is the potential matrix. @Mark_Sanborn

The first step to getting better is to disrupt yourself before someone else does. @Mark_Sanborn

Most people change only when they have to; Leaders change before they need to. @Mark_Sanborn

Who or what in my life needs to be disrupted? @Mark_Sanborn

Your life change is only possible if you first take responsibility of where you are and where you are going. @rory_vaden

You have to own it before you can change it. @rory_vaden

You have to be in charge of it before you can improve it. @rory_vaden

You have to accept it before you can update it. @rory_vaden

You are responsible for your life. @rory_vaden

Your life is your fault. @rory_vaden

It’s not about hard work or smart work; It’s about both. @rory_vaden

Find your performed mode and the potential matrix at Potentialprinciple.com

The Action Catalyst is a weekly podcast hosted by Rory Vaden of Southwestern Consulting every Wednesday. The show is regularly in the Top 25 of Business News Podcasts, has listeners from all around the world and shares “insights and inspiration to help you take action.” Each week Rory shares ideas on how to increase your self-discipline and make better use of your time to help you achieve your goals in life. He also interviews special expert guests and thought leaders. Subscribe on iTunes and please leave a rating and review!