By Casey Grey
First I need to start by saying this post was inspired by Tim Ferriss' Podcast Episode with Derek Sivers. It was a repost on Tim's part but perfect timing for myself. It definitely got the wheels turning and had me questioning what I do and why I do it.
There are two schools of thought out there:
So which one is best?
I believe it depends. Like most things in life, there are many factors at play and people have different reasons for doing what they do.
For example, let's start with my business. More specifically, the types of projects we do. We say yes to everything that either requires a general contractor or carpentry skills. That's a rule I have set (we're not going to say yes to a plumbing repair). Yes, the small projects are often a pain because they take up a substantial amount of time based on the financial reward but there are other reasons for us to say yes right now.
First, it keeps our team busy. The large projects never line up perfectly and if delays happen it is good to have something in our back pocket to make sure the guys stay busy and get paid. Second, you never know what a small project will lead to. Even if we can't do it it is another person we can help and refer to somebody else if required. It's one more opportunity to create a raving fan. Third, it helps with cash flow within the business. At the end of the day the business has bills to pay so the money needs to keep flowing.
In the future will this change? Absolutely! The plans are already in motion. Larger projects are coming our way and partnerships are being formed. Soon we'll be saying no much more than we say yes to. We'll get to the point where we can shift to "say no unless it's a HELL YES!"
And that's the key. I believe we need to work up to saying no. Especially in business. If you want experience in a certain area, say yes to every opportunity that comes your way. No matter how small or mundane it is. Once that foundation is built and the opportunities continue to come, you can then begin to pick and choose.
I don't believe it's one or the other. I believe it's one and then the other.
In other parts of my life, I'm applying the "say no unless it's a HELL YES!" option already. Actually I'm applying this in parts of the business as well. We get approached all the time to be a part of events. Our go to answer for this is "no". It really has to be intriguing for us to be a part of it, meaning it has to be a HELL YES!
In my personal life, it's the same thing. There's always something going on. Unless it's family related it's typically "no" unless it's a HELL YES!
At the end of the day it's important to have rules for your decision making. But it's also important to review those rules every once in a while and see how they're working for you. As we grow and evolve, we change. Our businesses change. Our relationships change. The economy changes. Our needs change.
That's life! It's always changing. Nature is never the same and that's what makes it beautiful.