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Only One Thing To Share- And It’s Brilliant!!

472135521Much of my time is spent advising others how to grow their businesses. Yet it took a client to give me the answer on how to grow mine. Magical advice. Powerful for business and life. Here it is.

Education industry leader and thought leader Ryan Trainor grabbed my arm when I told him I was ‘drowning’ – that my little business was over-flowing with opportunity – too much to do, too little time to do it. “Wait here,” he said as he sprinted upstairs to bring me a book. I read it on the plane. It has changed everything. It’s advice I give clients. But had to hear it myself before I took my own medicine. Quite simply, that advice is this:

Be absolutely single-minded about the ‘one thing’ that will underpin your success.

“Focus. Focus Focus., If I had a dog, I’d call it Focus.” Edge’s Geoff Campbell told me that. And it fits with Ryan’s book gift, The One Thing by Gary Keller. Before explaining its key message, a powerful story told to me by Tom Moult when I mentioned Keller’s book.

Sir Peter Blake is the brilliant New Zealander who led that country to its amazing America’s Cup yachting triumph in the 1980s. When preparing for that competition, as he was introduced to various people who would join the team – a carpenter, a PR person, an accountant, etc – he asked them all this one very simple question: ”How will you help the boat go faster?” He knew his ‘one thing’, and worked with a total sense of priority around how he spent his time, and the decisions he made – all shaped around that ‘one thing.’

Gary Keller calls it ‘niching.’ Narrow the focus. Do a few things well. Do fewer things for more effect. Successful companies, he suggests, ask themselves: “What’s our one thing?” Then they drive with single-minded focus for the one thing on which they have decided.

So- in your lives right now, whether this relates to your career, business or just YOU, here’s my ask:

Pause to determine what matters the most right now for you to achieve progress and success. Then give it a clear sense of priority. Give it all the time it deserves.

The majority of what you want will come from the minority of what you do. Keller says a focus on the ‘one thing’ creates a domino effect in our lives. We just need to find that lead domino.

The ‘one thing’ concept has sharpened the focus of the financial PR firm I’m launching with two industry leaders in two months – our focus is unashamedly around helping clients grow. That’s it. If what we are doing is not adding immediate value to growth, we won’t do it.

And in my life, that ‘one thing’ is getting my health back on track- diet, exercise, weight. A big job. But I’ve made a start, knowing it’s the lead domino that will create a tsunami of positive impacts in all aspects of my life.

So- pause and reflect.

Too much going on in your life and job? Overwhelmed a little. If so, read this post again. Get its core message. “How can you help the boat go faster?” What is that ‘one thing’ for you – that one, biggest priority that if you put the right amount of focus on it, every day, would have the biggest impact on your career, business, life, happiness.

Find it. Choose what matters most and give it all the time it demands. Most importantly – get started! I have – and it’s making a wonderful difference.

Thanks to the very talented Guy Downes for the cartoon below. Guy Downes is an illustrator who helps individuals and organisations connect with the audiences that matter to them using a range of visual techniques such as cartoons, illustrations, doodles, graphic recording, strategy maps and video scribe animations. For more information on Guy and his work, please visit Guy Downes and Office Guy Cartoons.

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23 Responses to Only One Thing To Share- And It’s Brilliant!!

  1. Corina April 13, 2016 at 10:12 am #

    Just the post I needed to read Chris. Thanks for sharing.

    • Chris Savage April 13, 2016 at 1:55 pm #

      Thanks Corina.

    • Louise O'Brien May 3, 2017 at 6:58 pm #

      Apparently Bill Gates and Warren Buffett were in a room and Gates’ father asked them each to write on a piece of paper the one word that made them successful and they both wrote ‘focus’

  2. Jenet Depke April 13, 2016 at 10:22 am #

    Good morning Chris

    Thanks and gratitude for sharing your pearls of wisdom this morning.

    Your topic is perfect timing in my own journey and in my business. I related to exactly where you were on that day you shared your frustrations and dilemma with your client. And I have no doubts that most executives and employers who read this blog will also be truly inspired as much as I was; its fantastic and insightful advices.

    My thanks and gratitude once again for sharing your teachings and wisdom with the world at large – we are blessed to be coached and mentored free of charge by someone who is so committed and kind enough to make the time to share these blogs so that we can all reach our dreams and goals in our life journey with smarter strategies for success.

    Congratulations on the launching of your PR Agency soon. Wishing you success and abundance on this journey.

    Have a blessed day.

    Warmest Wishes:)

    JENET DEPKE

    • Chris Savage April 13, 2016 at 1:56 pm #

      Thanks as always, Jenet. Chris

  3. Catherine April 13, 2016 at 10:35 am #

    Brilliant. Thank you. I started a business at the end of last year and it always feels like there’s more to do than hours in the day. This is timely advice.

    • Chris Savage April 13, 2016 at 1:56 pm #

      Thanks Catherine. Good luck with it!! Chris

  4. Sam Musgrave April 13, 2016 at 1:17 pm #

    Brilliant Chris. Like you, I spend my life trying to get my clients to focus and grow! It is a timely reminder for me to do the same. Thanks for the reminder!

    • Chris Savage April 13, 2016 at 5:28 pm #

      Thanks Sam!!!

  5. Shayne Priddle April 13, 2016 at 1:34 pm #

    Love this Chris! Too often we get overwhelmed by the myriad of ‘tasks’ that seem to need our attention. A clear focus on the ‘one thing’ that will ‘make the boat go faster’ and the rigour of calling ourselves to account on that, everyday, is a simple but effective approach. Only when we have done that ‘one thing’, can we attend to the inevitable clutter that we usually gets in the way. Thanks for sharing.

    • Chris Savage April 13, 2016 at 5:27 pm #

      Pleasure Shayne. Good to hear from you. Chris

  6. Allira Carroll April 13, 2016 at 4:54 pm #

    Could not be more timely – thanks Chris!

    • Chris Savage April 13, 2016 at 5:28 pm #

      Thanks Allira. Chris

  7. Peter Giles April 13, 2016 at 10:45 pm #

    Thanks Chris, good advice for individuals and business of all sizes. Focus gives clarity of purpose to efforts. a great read

    • Chris Savage April 18, 2016 at 2:15 pm #

      Thanks Peter!!

  8. Luke Cook April 14, 2016 at 8:52 am #

    You did it again Chris – this is the type of advise that definitely will help my next stage of career. It is also refreshing to see that people I respect also have the same battles. Thanks for your honesty

    • Chris Savage April 18, 2016 at 2:15 pm #

      Thanks Luke!

  9. Lisette April 18, 2016 at 2:37 am #

    It sounds simple, but arriving at the “one thing” can be so hard. A lot of times, we want to be seen as being “so busy” and “doing it all” when in reality that can mean you spread yourself way too thin. This post is a great reminder of the importance of focus. Thank Chris.

    • Chris Savage April 18, 2016 at 2:16 pm #

      Good stuff, Lisette!

  10. Katherine April 19, 2016 at 11:50 am #

    Love this Chris, thank you!

    • Chris Savage April 26, 2016 at 11:15 am #

      Thanks Katherine!!

  11. Chris Galloway May 15, 2016 at 7:27 pm #

    This is good stuff. I don’t run a business but I do do things like public speaking and seeking to make a difference overseas as well as on the uni campus where I work — I have more opportunity than ever and the message of focus is reallyh helpful.

    • Chris Savage May 16, 2016 at 10:50 am #

      Thanks. Good luck with it. Chris

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