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“Needle in a haystack’s easy – just bring a magnet.”
Eliot stared witheringly at Hardison. “You take the poetry out of everything.”
“Says the man who’d just punch the haystack.”
~ Keith R.A. DeCandido, The Zoo J

You can beat a wall with a feather duster or a ten pound hammer. Achieve more, with less frustration, in less time using the right tools. Take half the time to make a sale, and you’ll probably close more of them. Here are a few pointers for hardworking business owners:

1. Evaluate and Choose by split test.
Take two systems, closes, adverts, approaches, and measure the results. If A produces ten and B produces four, test your best producer, A, against C. If C producers more than A, test C against D. And so on until you find the best close or system or advert or approach to use. This, alone, can increase your results by 400%. (And use contingency.) Talk to me and find out how you can do this for pennies on the dollar.

2. Get advice from smart, experienced people.
You can’t buy the years and pain and mistakes they paid to get that experience, so jump onto the fast track by paying them to teach you.

3. Look at what your competitor is doing and improve upon it.

4. Learn from what rich people do, what big business does, what lazy people do.

5. Be objective and unattached. Once you are emotionally involved in the business choices you make, you can lose perspective and accurate judgement.

6. Consider all your alternatives regularly.

7. Be prepared to walk away, cut bait, accept fault, lose the battle to win the war. Even though you may have invested time and money into a project, when you see the thing (or person) isn’t going to work, cut your losses before you lose more time, because time is irreplaceable.

8. Play “What if?” games more often. What if you lost your best producer or best client? What if you paid more incentives or commissions? What if you fired half your workers? What if you were paralysed or hurt in an accident and you couldn’t work / walk / talk? What if you expanded or limited your product line? This game opens one’s mind to possibilities and lurking threats.

9. Think like an army general – read Sun Tzu’s Art of War. Spend the money you would spend training ten people on the five producers and see what happens. An army that isn’t regularly trained will fail.

10. Grow a pair. Stop apologizing, making excuses, quitting, rolling over, giving in, feeling sorry for the wrong people, rescuing parasites. Read Atlas Shrugged. Stand up for yourself, your business and family and for your principles. I know some great people who have risked a lot to stand up for their values and beliefs and it made them stronger and more successful.

Robin Elliott LeverageAdvantage.com