Some time ago I heard a wonderful song by Richard Mekdeci called Ready, Willing, and Worthy. So struck was I by the title that I found I could focus on nothing else for the remainder of the event. I am always on the lookout for the simple and effective things in work and life. And Ready, Willing, and Worthy immediately captured my attention as a simple and effective tool for exploring and making changes in your business.
Here is how it works:
In thinking about this first step of readiness, what immediately comes to mind is a race. In almost all racing events I have witnessed, the starter begins the race with some version of “Ready (or on your marks), Get Set, Go!” Think of the chaos if the starter simply yelled “Go!” Some people would be ready; others would not. I suspect there would be a bit of jostling and maybe even people who would trip and fall over one another.
Being ready means having a well thought out plan and having what you need to fully implement that plan. All too often, our human tendency is to jump right into an idea and then suffer the consequences of not testing our readiness.
Example: Joseph decided that his healthcare staffing company needed a new marketing strategy. His first instinct was to create a brand new four-color brochure to grab the attention of buyers. In pricing this piece, he learned that the brochure he designed was going to cost more than $10,000.
As he was writing the deposit check so the printer could begin the work, he asked himself a money-saving question: “What else do I need to know before I commit to this decision?” What he realized in asking himself this question was that he had almost jumped right in without being absolutely certain that this was the best move.
So Joseph did some further research and what he learned came as a bit of a surprise. He found out that staffing companies in other markets were having success using postcards instead of brochures. Joseph also learned that postcards were not currently being used in his area. In addition, when he thought more carefully about his current brochure, he realized there was absolutely nothing wrong with the one he was already using.
The result: For less than half the price of the new brochure, Joseph sent a series of postcards to prospects and clients in his area. Within four months his company picked up four large clients and nine smaller firms as customers. He had never seen that kind of return when sending brochures over the past ten years.
To test your readiness, ask yourself the following questions:
- What else do I need to know to make this decision?
- What have I overlooked?
- What would make me even more ready?
- Do I have everything I need to make this change?
So, are you ready?
Once you determine you are ready, it is important to ask yourself if you are really willing to do what it will take to fully implement the change.
Example: Pamela decided to add a new niche to her recruiting firm. After careful research, she determined that the financial services sector would be a great focus to add to her business. Through her digging, Pamela gained a clear picture of this potential market, the type of needs they had, and even a starting list of over 1200 prospects to contact. She had no hesitation in saying she was ready!
But this second step stopped her in her tracks. In asking herself, “Am I willing to do what it will take to achieve the desired result?” she came back with a resounding “NO.” In carefully thinking about what it would take for her staff to fully develop the financial services market, she realized how much attention that would divert away from their existing clients. She was also not willing to add additional staff or shift any existing resources to make this happen. What became clear was a strong desire to make better use of their existing base of prospects and clients.
The result: Her business grew by more than 50% in their current niche and they became known as the “go to” experts for recruiting needs for management positions.
To test your willingness, ask yourself these questions:
- Am I willing to do what it takes to achieve the desired result?
- How willing am I to make adjustments along the way?
- Am I willing to accept that this change may not turn out the way I think it will?
So, are you willing?
Two quotes that refer to worthiness are: “You’ve gotta believe to receive” and “Energy flows where the mind goes.”
Example: Chandra had been trying to grow her book of business for three years. And for three years she consistently maintained the same level of sales. She was clearly ready. She proved her willingness by consistently sticking with and adjusting her plan during that time. Yet, nothing happened. That is, until she identified and removed a self-imposed roadblock.
You see, Chandra had heard a few prospects and clients refer to the staffing services her company provided as a “necessary evil.” What she had not realized until she asked herself, “Do I really believe in what I am doing?” was that she was buying into their perspective. So Chandra made a list of all the benefits of the service she and her company provided and reviewed it every day. At first, she was filled with doubt, but over time her thoughts shifted to a firm belief that her service was valuable, powerful, and of huge benefit to her clients.
The result: Within six months, Chandra added six new high-volume clients and more than doubled her sales volume.
To test your beliefs about worthiness, ask yourself these questions:
- Do I really, truly believe in what I am doing?
- What do I need to shift in my thinking to truly believe I am worthy of the success I desire?
So, are you worthy?
Three simple and powerful questions: Am I ready? Am I willing? Am I worthy? If the answer to all three is a heartfelt YES, then I know you are on your way to making a powerful change!