Darren Hardy’s landmark self-improvement book, The Compound Effect, offers powerful insights for life that translate directly to sales, marketing and entrepreneurship. At its core, Hardy’s deceptively simple message is that your choices influence your habits, and your habits influence your outcomes. The key is making a habit of making the right choices … daily. This is how seemingly routine everyday actions turn into great outcomes over time.
So, where are the sales and marketing parallels? Well, as with any job, you need to start with a goal, and then create a concrete plan for reaching that goal. And every day, you take steps toward that goal until it is finally achieved. These principles are not magic; they are actually the foundation of what Tony Robbins calls ‘the science of achievement’ in the book’s introduction.
Imagine your sales quota or marketing lead-generation goals … you have a monthly or quarterly number to hit. It seems really abstract and/or formidable at first, but once you start planning out the daily activities that will bring you to the desired total volume, suddenly the goal is realizable. You may not notice in the moment, at the end of this week or even the beginning of next month, but if you’re following your plan, you will eventually meet your goal (assuming you have the right plan).
Another big key to the compound effect is consistency. Hardy writes:
“Small, Smart Choices + Consistency + Time = RADICAL DIFFERENCE”
Again, forming the habit is essential to reaching the destination, so that every day you are doing the right things without even necessarily being aware. Imagine as an entrepreneur or CEO, you want to grow your company to a certain size next year or in the next three years. You need to map out the plan—and steps—to get there: Increase staff by x amount, sell y percent more products/services, add key positions a and b within given time limits. Whatever your plan is, you can’t accomplish it except through sticking to the daily discipline of focused, hard work. Neglect the daily work, and the goal will slowly evaporate. It’s not glamorous, but it’s the time-honored, odds-on way to be successful.
The sales/marketing professionals who want to get by on lazy shortcuts will not bring in the kind of new business that those who deliberately apply the compound effect do. So, put your head down and get to work! Ask yourself: What are the things you need to be doing today to achieve success tomorrow? How can you keep yourself on task to repeat these beneficial and productive behaviors over time?
Whatever you need to be doing every day, do it! For example:
- Create more content
- Spend more time on existing content to make it exceptional
- Do proper outreach/sharing
- Research your audience
- Clean up those email nurturing streams
- Tighten up your sales process
- Address conversion and user experience issues on your website
- Talk to your customers or other departments in your company.
Read at least 10 pages a day of a book that guides you toward success (like The Compound Effect), and implement its ideas in direct action. There’s a reason why the famous author-speaker-strategist Tony Robbins wrote the introduction to this book: The principles behind peak performance are universal; Hardy just happened to put them all together in one easily digestible format. So if you haven’t already, start directing your own success. Thank me later. Or better yet, thank yourself for taking responsibility for some great choices.