In this latest “Listener Question of the Week” episode, James and Phoebe look at what you do when you have too many good ideas. Is there such as thing as a bad idea?
James believes that having too many ideas is not a problem. Looking at it from a spiritual point of view, it means we’re channelling genius from a version of our higher self.
It’s also not the case that by choosing one idea, you have to say “No” to all of the other ones that you have.
He shares that there’s nothing wrong with a crazy idea, and there’s nothing wrong with one being considered “bizarre.”
“You’ve got to be able to believe it’s going to produce the outcome or results that you want it to have”
Phoebe feels that for some ideas, she needs external validation from others that it could work.
“That’s something inside of me that I need to work on”
James adds that it’s a fact that for your idea to become something more, there will come a moment in time where you will have to face your fear.
“Step out of that comfort zone and into the realm of uncertainty”
We often make excuses as to why the time isn’t right for an idea, but the time will never be “just right.”
James calls the moment that you’ll have to take action as the “ledge.” He adds that the beautiful part is the fear won’t be there once you take that step.
Trying asking yourself what is the one big action item that you’ve been avoiding.
“When we don’t take action on the ideas, the ideas stop coming”
One strategy is to start with the idea that gets you the most excited. Remember that as a business grows, it can’t stay in the innovation stage and it must mature to develop better systems.
Before you move on from an idea, identify what is the completion point.
“You might as well make sure that it can keeping working, running and moving efficiently without you before you move on”
Phoebe mentions that there might be little projects you can take on within your company without completely abandoning that idea.
In this episode, James and Phoebe are joined by special guest Jason Friedman, the founder and CEO of CXFormula. They discuss how to develop a customer-centric mindset, while touching on the topics of emotions, confidence and much more.
Jason started his career in theatre, as a lighting designer and technician for such groups as Rush and Fleetwood Mac, as well as touring with Broadway.
“I spent a lot of those years really understanding audience on a whole different level. Everything we did was to add value to the customers.”
He cites a study where 80% of CEOs believed that they were creating amazing experiences for their customers, where only 8% of the same customers surveyed agreed. He calls this divide the “Experience Gap,” and the result of organizations not having a customer-centric mindset is a common problem today.
Jason tells entrepreneurs to literally step into the shoes of their customers in order to see situations through their lens, and from their perspective.
“You have to understand what it’s like for that customer. What are they feeling?”
He believes that the customer isn’t always right, but there has to be an alignment between the business and customer, with clear expectations in place. When this occurs, businesses are able to really create value for the customer.
Most businesses create customer experiences by default, whereas Jason’s methods reverse engineer the process and design the desired experience.
In order to really understand what the customer wants, we need to understand what is going on in his or her world, as well as what they’re looking for when interacting with your brand. In one of his businesses, he had all of his employees take an improv acting class to help them listen better and react to customer frustrations in certain situations.
“The key to any customer-centric journey is beginning with the end in mind”
In order to improve our customers’ experiences, we need to meet the client’s expectations at all times using any process or system necessary.
Jason also says businesses need to create what he calls “moments of wow.” In these situations, a spontaneous sequence is used to surprise and delight them.
It is possible to create a custom, tailored experience for a larger group. Jason says you can do this without spending a lot of time or extra money.
“How do you make them feel like the hero and that you’re the guy that takes them on that journey?”
In the latest “Listener Question of the Week,” James and Phoebe answer an infamous question. If you had to start all over again, what would you do first?
James notes that when you’re just starting out and having a smaller business, you can make adjustments much quicker and easier than when you are larger. When you’re lean, you have the advantage of your time, along with possibilities that come with it.
You need to start first with your goals and intentions. Think about what you want for yourself 5 to 10 years in the future.
“Start to form the vision of the company and the lifestyle that you want”
It’s important to remember that you don’t need to do everything all at once, and you can take “baby steps” to get to where you’re going.
“I always look back on all these experiences I’ve had in my life that led me to this point”
Next, you need to know who your customer is and what problem he or she is facing. If you want to make more money, then solve bigger problems.
James adds that you have to describe the problem in the customer’s terms, then sell them your biggest asset: your time. This could be through coaching or consulting, or some other service.
Phoebe shares that once you learn how to do a service, you can offer your service for free to them. James says this will create a case study and experience that you can test and prove.
“If you’re not willing to do that, then you shouldn’t start a business”
If he were starting over, James would first reach out to online authorities and make them a video, asking to do the same for each of them. He would then market them and manage their YouTube channels. He would invest the money he made from this venture into a studio that local businesses could use, and start hosting workshops, offer online courses and boot camps. By doing all of these steps, without having the advantage of his previous name or brand, he feels he could generate $100,000 in revenue in only 6 to 8 months.
Phoebe sees many people not planning for the long-term and are skipping steps to try to get to 6-figures in their business as soon as possible.
James believes people replace passion with fear, and often get distracted when comparing themselves with others.
Phoebe wishes she had her mindset straight when she started her latest business.
“I wish I had that confidence to just go for everything”
James masked his fear with logic, and if he could go back in time, he would embrace that fear and realize that everything we do is going to come with that feeling of uncertainty.
He would raise his prices in order to work with more extraordinary people, and to solve bigger problems. He would also learn lessons sooner!
“Not believing in myself really held me back for a long time”
Do shortcuts to success really exist? In this episode, James and Phoebe give their thoughts on shortcuts, and on what’s really holding us back in our lives and businesses!
James believes that we all secretly want shortcuts, although the logical part of our brain has convinced us that they don’t exist. He says there are shortcuts to success, but not in the way you may be thinking they look like.
A lot of people will sabotage themselves and let fear control their decisions. We don’t spend enough time doing the 5% of things that account for 95% of the results in our businesses.
Are we just doing things to keep busy? He calls this the “Hustle Denial” mindset.
Successful people seem to have an extra “something”, such as a desire or feeling of being unstoppable, that they often don’t talk about.
There are big action items that are never going to be easy and will always feel scary, but by doing them, you do get the chance to do what you want, sooner.
There is a Zen saying that states, “Leap and the net will appear.”
“You’ve got to strengthen that muscle of feeling the fear, and doing it anyway”
People can literally outsmart themselves by using logic to determine why something won’t work.
“I can give you reasons that sound logical and make so much sense, but it’s all based on being reasonable and playing small”
Try writing down a list of the things you are procrastinating on and know that you need to do. Identify the results that you want and role-play with it. How would a successful business do this?
“Life is lived just outside that zone of uncertainty; that’s what’s fun.”
Many people often want to take the longer route to success, just to prove to the world the sacrifices they had to make to get there. They tend to make excuses (such as having no list, no testimonials, etc.), which is really just fear stopping the action that they need to do.
The shortest distance between two points is a straight line.
“That’s the irony; the shortcut is to go from where you are, to where you want to be.”
James believes that if there is something that you really want, it is a true possibility for it to happen, but you need to get out of your own way to have it become a reality.
“We all have the courage, it’s there. Maybe you just haven’t used it in awhile”
Phoebe notes that sharing your intentions with people that you know and trust is an important piece to holding yourself accountable.
You need to ask yourself what it looks like to be fearless and unstoppable. What got you here won’t get you there!
In this “Listener Question of the Week” episode, James and Phoebe share their thoughts on what you can do when your patience starts wearing thin, the difference between patience and persistence, the importance of milestones, and much more!
James says we’ve all felt our patience wearing thin, and in his early days in business, he was impatient and wondering why he wasn’t getting what he wanted fast enough.
“I was trying to win the baseball game without even stepping up to the plate”
He realized that the more time he spent “stepped up to the plate”, the more he increased his chances of getting the results he wanted.
James now comes from a place of patience, rather than persistence.
“True patience means you have a knowing that it’s going to work out”
You have to fall in love with where you are at right now. You can’t rush the “birthing process” of your business.
He stresses the importance of creating milestones in your business, so you can predict revenue, how long it will take to complete a project, and more.
Coming from a right-brained approach, it’s helpful to look for signs to see if you’re on the right track.
The left-brained approach is to look for proof of profit, and your product doesn’t need to be finished before you start selling it.
Phoebe has created logical and practical steps in her business to work towards generating $1 million in revenue.
“That enthusiasm propels me forward; when I’m not excited about what I’m doing right now, there’s no way that I can keep focused.”
James adds that impatience is leading to a fear that what you’re doing isn’t going to work, and we really need to get back to a place of knowing, and certainty that it will.
In this episode, James and Phoebe talk about the magical power of listening, and the clues it can uncover about the language you use!
Often you can’t see what’s happening around you, or have the right perspective on things. An outsider can see things more clearly, as he or she is detached from the situation.
We all have blind spots, which shows a lack of awareness and uncertainty as to why we haven’t gotten what we’ve wanted in life. Our language can help us identify these blind spots.
James says the answer is often in your language, but only if you’re willing to listen. If you want to get “unstuck”, it’s not about filling your head with more content.
“We know nothing but our lens, perception and experience of our life”
Because of an experience with a coach at a mastermind event, James realized he had been afraid to ask affiliates to promote him, just from the language he used.
“It’s forever altered the way I can look at my business now”
Every time Phoebe says the phrase, “I don’t know”, she has a friend call her out on it by stating, “You do know.”
4 action items you can do to bring the power of effective listening to your awareness:
1) Practice listening to others
Isolate the words the person is using and wait until he or she is finished speaking. If you’re on the phone with the person, you can write down what is being said, think about it and wait a few seconds before responding. This exercise will train you to listen to what you are saying as well.
2) Identify what you really want and write down all the reasons you haven’t done it
Look at the words you use, because the language will give you clues. That thing, or things, that’s keeping you from what you want will most likely be showing up in other areas of your life.
3) Start to notice your complaints
Your complaints will be a huge indicator of your beliefs and what’s holding you back.
4) Go to the people closest to you and see how they would describe you if you weren’t in the room
This can be a difficult exercise, but it will get you to understand how people see you and how important we make those perspectives. You’ll start to see how much of our own lives are controlled by the opinions and judgements of others.
In the latest edition of the “Listener Question of the Week”, James and Phoebe show you how to grow and scale, while stepping into that CEO role in your business.
The first thing you must ask yourself is why you would want to scale and grow.
Stepping into that CEO role means taking on some new responsibilities for who you are in your business.
James notes that when you’re a “do-it-all” entrepreneur, your business won’t see as much revenue, but due to the lower costs involved, you will see a much higher profit margin.
Having higher expenses really started putting pressure on his business, but it can be motivating when you don’t let fears and concerns get in the way of your profitable business.
Usually scaling a business comes down to having a desire for something bigger than yourself, and having a vision. When you bring on team members, this vision becomes essential.
Many entrepreneurs have trouble stepping into the CEO role due to fear of letting go and not having everything be “perfect” anymore. Not only is the vision crucial, but also it has to be measurable.
The CEO’s number one job becomes protecting the vision. James stresses that he has to determine “what” needs to be done, and leave the “how” to the team to figure out.
A helpful exercise to do on a daily basis is recording every single task as a $10, $100, $1,000 and $1,000 per hour activity. You’ll want to spend most of your time in the $10,000 per hour category, doing activities involving strategic planning, decision-making and deal making.
Investing in your business on a higher level can give you that one little nugget that will make all the difference in the success of your business.
People tend to focus on activities without knowing what the actions will produce, or without hitting a measurable metric.
Besides having a vision, a leader’s goal should be to become an effective communicator, along with making your team a priority.
Phoebe shares that when you put a positive spin on having others help you to scale your business, it’s going to allow you to have that bigger vision.
James adds that some of your best future team members are going to be your biggest fans, or past students of your courses.
In this episode, James and Phoebe provide listeners with 8 powerful questions that they can start asking themselves today to help improve the quality of their lives.
Everyone wants the answers quickly, instead of staying in the question and enjoying the unknown. Staying in the unknown will give you the opportunity and experience to come to the answers yourself.
A few great quotes about “questions” are:
“The quality of your life is determined by the quality of your questions” (unknown)
“Effective leaders ask questions, instead of giving orders” (Dale Carnegie)
“Questions that we ask ourselves can shape our perception of who we are, what we’re capable of and what we’re willing to do to achieve our dreams” (Tony Robbins)
James believes that asking the right questions will give you access to your path of seeking your own way, instead of always wondering why something isn’t working.
Asking “What’s wrong with me”, and similar questions, will produce a negative answer which will start to become our reality. From an energetic standpoint, questions carry their own vibrations, which is why you need to ask yourself more empowering ones.
James always asks himself first what he wants, or what is the essence of it, as desires will attract the answer.
Gary Keller’s “focusing question”, from his book, “The One Thing” (see
"LINKS") will help drive you to make the best decision by determining what is the one thing you need to do each year, quarter, month, week and day.
There is no incentive in our school system to ask better questions. However, often the “right” answer actually cuts off all other possibilities.
8 empowering questions that you can ask yourself every day
Before asking these questions, considering what you are committed to achieving will help frame the questions better.
1) What is the one thing that I can do today that would have the impact on what is important to me?
2) How can I improve, or contribute, today?
3) What would make tomorrow better than today?
4) What is the most effective way to achieve your desired result?
5) What is the lesson or takeaway? (particularly important in a breakdown)
6) What am I missing? (this will give visibility to your blind spots)
7) Who can I connect with?
8) Who do I need to be today?
You don’t have to pick all 8 of these to ask immediately. Start asking the one or two that you feel are the most important questions, daily.
The question is the first step that will allow the opportunity to get out of the problem!