Secret to Success: Don’t set your Business Goals. Crazy but it works!

The Secret to Success: Don’t set your Business Goals. Crazy but it works!

Setting Business Goals has proven to increase success by 33-47%.

I’ve personally added up to 86% more value to businesses by implementing our business operating framework which uses a different approach to set business goals.

So why do I say YOU shouldn’t set goals in your business?

Critical components for the secret to success:

  • Success takes drive, determination, and focus.
  • Setting goals is a very effective way to drive people to focus on business goals.
  • People are individuals we need to ignite the drive in each and every person.

If you want to achieve your business goals you must be able to mobilize everyone involved in your business to focus on the thing you want to achieve.

This includes employees, customers, suppliers, and business partners.

The problem here is that each of these people may not be aligned with your business goals. They may have their own personal direction and desire that isn’t perfectly aligned with what you want to achieve in your business.

How do you get all these parties aligned to YOUR business goals and hold them accountable?

Secret to success #1 Publicize your goals

Every business owner has goals. But many keep them hidden away silent but to a very few people in the business.

Those that publicize their goals for everyone to see have a significantly higher chance of achieving them.

Publicizing goals is good. It tells others what you’re trying to achieve and brings them along the journey.

But it’s not enough….

99% of the time the publication business goals are a one-way street, it is simply telling others what YOU want.

Some will hear it, some will believe in it, but only a very few will be 100% aligned with your business goals.

This is a fundamental mistake most Business Owners make. It happens across the board, in global multi-nationals, and in small family-owned businesses.

The result…. Lack of staff commitment to your business goals.

Secret to success #2 Get others involved

The key is to get the people in your business to set the business goals themselves…

If this sounds scary to you, it is!

It was scary for me in my business, it has been scary for every client I have worked with over the last 20+ years.

But the results are worth it!

Secret to success #3 Take away the Fear with a proven framework

It’s less scary using a proven framework. A tested and proven approach that helps you set goals and empowers staff to achieve them.

I’ve been using and teaching clients to use this approach for many years now with unbelievable results.

32%-89% improvement in fact.

Using this model the largest increase in profit I have seen was over 200%. The smallest was  32%.

Using existing staff and no new technology solutions – purely with good old fashion focus!

And you can use this approach not just for profit. For any area of the business you like.

I’ve even used this same framework to improve Customer Experience and change Customer Behaviours.

Our framework, Financial Peak Performance™, provides the approach.

It involves staff at the center of business goal setting. Provides a clear path to measure and celebrate success, and really really effective communication across the business.

When you involve staff the right way each person’s individual goals come into alignment with your business goals…. this is extremely powerful.

This is how you get consistently overachieve your business goals.

Secret to success #4 Take action

You can do this in your business too. The first step is to take action.

It took me 2 decades to create and perfect the Financial Peak Performance™ framework.

I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to test and refine the framework over hundreds of businesses, across dozens of industries.

You don’t need my framework to do this in your business, you can do it on your own, it might not even take you 2 decades to perfect…

But if you want to unlock that potential value in your business right now, our Financial Peak Performance™ framework will get you there in weeks not years.

If you want to get started I offer a free growth clarity call to make sure we are on the same page and I can really help your business (I can’t help everyone).

Want more knowledge?

We’ve curated these pieces of content just for you…


About the Author:

Brad Horan is an accomplished Business Advisor and Chartered Accountant.

He loves business and particularly the human psychology of business decision-making and its role in achieving success.

Brad has over 20 years of experience in providing Business Advisory services across finance and operations. Early in his career, he recognized that there was a disconnect between operational and financial goals within businesses. This disconnect often resulted in businesses taking different conflicting actions despite trying to achieve the same result.

They unknowingly sabotaged their own business, and in extreme cases, they led to the demise of businesses.

Brad worked with hundreds of businesses over the years big and small, eventually coming up with a framework to drive ownership through all levels of the business. This improves employee relationships, customer experiences, and ultimately reduces work and stress for those managing the business.

Businesses big and small have benefited from Brad’s unique services; Midas, Diamond Pasta, Universal Pictures, HSBC, MetLife, Otis, Transport NSW, Hannover Re, Exxon Mobil, Care Fusion, Cleaning Star, Lonergan Research, Jim’s antennas to name a few.

How to Protect your business from a COVID-19 Coronavirus Recession

A COVID-19 Coronavirus recession is looking likely but it may not happening. (updated June 2020)

You can protect your business, by adjusting your business strategy to ensure your business success.
I’m not here to preach doom & gloom, I just want all people and businesses to plan for the worst so they can come out on top.

Want to protect your business from Coronavirus COVID-19 induced meltdown?

I’ll show you how.

Ok – just a few things 1st.

  • I don’t know why people want so much toilet paper.
  • COVID-19 is not as deadly as other viruses (SARS/MERS)
  • We’ve had more flu victims over the last year than COVID-19 Coronavirus victims

So what’s all the fuss about????
Here’s my view:

  • The global economy was already teetering on the edge with a slow down in many global markets eminent. COVID-19 is simply a catalyst.
  • Death rate from the COVID-19 is not the main issue, the issue is the rate of spread could overwhelm our health systems.
  • Serious cases require ICU treatment. We don’t have thousands of empty ICU units laying around doing nothing. So how do we manage a mass spread like Italy?
  • As more people get sick the rate of spread can also affect the number of people available to support patients – hospital staff, cleaning staff, etc.
  • The quarantine approach will likely affect all businesses, supply chains, etc. We may see a Coronavirus Recession, or even a Global Coronavirus Recession.
    • Quarantined & sick people will produce as much,
    • Quarantined & sick people spend their money on very specific things (e.g. Panadol) and not other things (e.g. drinks at the local pub).

I’m about to give you the tools you need to survive (absolutely free – no sign-up, no trickery)
So what’s all the fuss about????
Here’s my view:

There are several things you need to think about. I have highlighted the main topics here. Download our comprehensive set of tools to get the full picture:

  1. First and foremost is Health and Safety – you must prioritise health and safety over profit at this time.
  2. Reassess your Business Strategy – focus on Cash Flow over all else in the short-term
  3. Implement Remote Working capabilities – this includes your sales cycle. Plan for shutdowns for you and your suppliers.
  4. Look for opportunities – there will be demand for delivered goods, online services, perhaps safe travel options
  5. Secure your Supply Chain – we have already seen kinks in the armour where goods are sourced overseas

Using our free tools below will give the best chance of Business Success…
So what can you do?

I’m not going to give you advice on how to protect your health (I’m not qualified) but I do have some ideas on how you can protect you business.

I’ve been collaborating with Andrew from Jazoodle to come up with a comprehensive set of tools to help you plan for a COVID-19 Coronavirus Recession.

Use these tools to plan for the worst, whilst hoping for the best:


Jazoodle is also offering free access to there financial modelling system to help SME businesses (details within Coronavirus COVID-19 FINANCIAL HEALTH CHECK) – Use Promo Code

Check out the Podcast in Audio Only or Video format
Audio Only; Here
Video version; Here

Please Help by taking our Coronavirus Business Survey:
Fill in our Business Impact Survey here:
Coronavirus (COVID-19) impact on Australian Businesses – Survey

Free Downloads:

I am opening up my calendar to support businesses. If you want help to understand and/or apply these tools to your business. Please book a 15 or 30 min phone meeting with me here.

About the Author:

Brad Horan is an accomplished Chartered Accountant, that loves business and particularly the human psychology of business decision making to achieve success.

Brad has over 20 years experience in consulting to businesses across finance and operations. Early in his career he recognised that there was a disconnect between operational and financial goals within businesses. This disconnect often resulted in businesses taking different conflicting actions despite trying to achieve the same result.

He recognised these conflicting actions were at great expense to businesses and their employees. In extreme cases they led to the demise of businesses.

Brad worked with hundreds of businesses over the years big and small, eventually coming up with a framework to drive ownership through all levels of the business. This improves employee relationships, customer experiences, and ultimately reduces work and stress for those managing the business.

Businesses big and small have benefited from Brad’s unique services; Midas, Diamond Pasta, Universal Pictures, HSBC, MetLife, Otis, Transport NSW, Hannover Re, Exxon Mobil, Care Fushion, Cleaning Star, Lonergan Research, to name a few.


Additional reading curated for you:

  1. Roadmap to Recovery – Recession Proof and be a Corona Virus Winner
  2. 1 Hour of clarity for a successful business and a better life.
  3. How to get More Money Fast in your business


The Catalyst

Customers were unhappy, the wait queue was getting longer and longer. Staff were complaining and staff turnover was at an all time high – who can blame them you would frustrated too if you were constantly listening to unhappy customers all day. Day in, and day out. The business leaders had tried “everything” they were exhausted, frustrated, and overwhelmed with everything they had tried, but failed with. They had some ideas but had lost the confidence to choose because the issues they were facing felt bigger than Ben Her.

The Discovery

When I first met with Toshi and discussed the issues he was facing in his business. I could feel the frustration and concern. He knew the poor Customer Service and high staff turnover was quickly turning into a downward spiral. He had thrown more staff, more training and ore money at the problem but nothing seemed to stick. His management team was adamant they need 20% more staff to bring their 3 centers up to meet performance targets and stem the turnover problem. We performed our usual RoadMap review of the business. As you can imagine I was really really nervous when I discovered they were already overstaffed…..

The Prognosis

Current processes need restructuring, they were not set up to service Customers in an efficient and effective manner, nor were they structured to achieve the business vision and goals.

The business KPI and communications were not functioning effectively. Essentially they were measuring the wrong KPI and did not have an effective way to identify issues and opportunities and learn from the best performing staff.

We knew that simply adding more staff was not going to fix the problem. We needed to address the underlying gaps in the business processes and the management framework to move this business forward.

The Solution

Using our Financial Peak Performance™ framework, we restructured the processes and set up specialist teams for complex situations. We shadowed the best performing staff and identified a bunch of quick help examples and best practice materials to improve the speed and consistency of service.

Once we implemented Ultimate Customer Value KPI™ the business could see exactly what the customer was feeling in Real-Time. We added an Active Management framework that held staff accountable for resolving issues and sharing those solutions throughout the business. Creating a continuous improvement loop.

The Result

I was honoured when Toshi invited me and my team to their internal awards ceremony. We were the 1st ever group to be invited outside their business.

He was so proud of the work we had done together. He said to me “you must come, my people, those who are getting rewarded would never have achieved the level they have without your help.”

Customer service was through the roof tracking at 97% (up from 49%, target 80%). It was so good they won a national award for best customer service (across all industries). Wow what a turnaround!

Now that business could see what the customer was experiencing and the had the management framework in place they could take rapid action. Customers were happy, Staff were happy (in fact staff turnover is the lowest in the industry).

Whats more the business now had 15% additional capacity, remember when they said they needed 20% more I said they were already overstaffed? Yes they had 15% more staff than they needed. I asked Toshi to look at reducing this cost, but he didn’t want o do that instead using this capacity to expand their service offering and offer better service than the competition.

Toshi was was now much more relaxed, he was a different guy compared to when we 1st met. He was working less hours, was delegating more tasks to his team and was confident in the decisions they were making.

He said to me “You did more than improve my business, you gave me my life back”.

KPI MASTERCLASS – Develop Kick-Ass metrics to elevate Customer Service and Increase Profit


In this KPI master class I will the answer the Five W’s – Who, What, Where, When, and Why.

This Masterclass will cover the following topics:

  1. The definition of KPI – Key, Performance, Indicator
  2. What Customer Value Chain KPI or Customer Service Metrics are
  3. The importance of KPI in determining Customer Service / Customer Value
  4. How measurements can provide a higher level of Business Success
  5. How you can implement Ultimate Customer Value metrics in your business right now

Other topics you may be interested in:

How to develop your successful Business Strategy

Innovation at its best – what BMW engineers have to say

Having the ability to track and take action on our Ultimate Customer Value is critical to success. If you do not have this in place you are flying blind!

Who – should have KPI.

Typically we think of KPI in a business sense but that is not the only place they are used. We use them in sports e.g. batting/bowling averages for example. They are used in Trading and gambling e.g. odds, payout, and win ratios.

We even have KPI in our technology – battery performance, energy consumption (cars/appliances), internet performance are all areas in our everyday life where we use KPI without even thinking about them.

Who should have KPI? Every business should have Ultimate Customer Value (UCV) KPI in my view. Having the ability to track and take action on our Customer Value is critical to success.

Customer Value is made up of the 4 proven analytic (non emotion response) elements built into the human buying decision.

      1. Cost
      2. Quality
      3. Speed
      4. Customer Service

When making a buying decision human being quickly analyse these 4 factors to determine the value. There are emotional factor to be considered also but these are almost impossible for us to accurately measure whereas Ultimate Customer Value or Customer Service Value we can measure within our business on a daily basis!

If you do not have this in place you are flying blind!

I’m small, I have an intimate relationship with my customers, I don’t need UCV KPI….. I hear this a lot. The reality is that you may forget that you were overdue with a client or that you had to change out the product due to quality issues 3 months ago. You have forgotten because you are busy but the client has not forgotten.

All too often we are left scratching our head when a customer leaves or complains – we didn’t see it coming….. That’s because we are not tracking their value experience. Once you track it you can keep refining it until it’s perfect, otherwise it is hit and miss.

In additional to every business, any person wanting to to understand the performance of something should use KPI.

Who = everybody (we already do)

All too often we are left scratching our head when a customer leaves or complains – we didn’t see it coming….. That’s because we are not tracking their value experience. Once you track it you can keep refining it until it’s perfect, otherwise it is hit and miss.

What – is a KPI?

KPI is short for Key Performance Indicator.

Let’s break this down before we look at it in total.

K is for Key – what is a key?

A key for a lock, a keyboard, a musical instrument, or key for example in keynote speaker. Each of these keys drive towards a predetermined action. A key locks or unlocks a door, a keyboard key creates it a digital signature that can be translated into letters or pictures or movements, when striking a key in music there’s a predetermined known sound that is expected from that key, even the keynote speaker is typically design to drive interest and get bums on seats at the event.

This is critical because where there is no predetermined action or we don’t know what action we want from a KPI, it’s not really a KPI.

If we don’t know what action we want from a KPI, it’s not really a KPI.

P – is for performance . The typical definition for performance is execution of an action to accomplish something.

Whilst a key is designed to provide predetermined outcome, performance is execution of the action to accomplish that outcome. This is pretty cool because it means a single KPI must be measuring both the execution and the accomplishment.

I often see KPI setup that only measure one or the other for example measuring sales as a value this is the outcome but does not measure the execution, we may measure the number of hours it takes to do something, this is execution but does not measure the accomplishment.

A good way to look at performance is by using the formula output divided by input equals performance (p=o/i). Output is the accomplishment and input is the execution value.

Using sales again, a simple example of this might be sales per hour.

The great thing about using a true performance formula is you’re measuring both efficiency and effectiveness at the same time. Let’s go for a simple example.

Bob and Joan are both salespeople at ABC company. Bob is old school, and although almost retired he has not let up at all. He pulls the highest amount of sles every month. He has a lot of connections within the industry and makes a sales primarily through face to face meetings, coffees, lunches, and the like.

Joan on the other hand is new age she loves digital. Joan has a young family and requires flexibility, because of this she works less hours than Bob.

Over last month Bob made $80,000 in sales he works 50 hours week on average.

Joan on the other hand does $60,000 in sales over the same period and she works an average of 30 hours per week.

We decide to set the KPI of sales dollars per hour worked.

You take Bob’s $80,000 divided by 200 hours for the month gives us $400 of sales per working hour.

Let’s look at Joan we take her $60,000 divided by 120 hours and that gives us $500 per hour.

See that’s interesting Joan is actually 25% more efficient and effective than Bob.

The great thing about using a true performance formula is you’re measuring both efficiency and effectiveness at the same time.

This is an example of just one month across a sales cycle which is typically lumpy, on it’s own with just 1 month of data this doesn’t mean much, however if this was regular it would warrant investigation.

We will want to understand whether there are any opportunities to learn from Joan’s approach to apply to Bob and others.

Importantly if looking at only the sales value Bob would be the superstar, perhaps we would be encouraging Joan to take more coffee and lunch meetings because that gets us $80,000…

Whereas enabling Joan to work an additional 20 hours would likely give us more sales than Bob is providing.

I’m not suggesting we fire or replace Bob he may be a valuable member of the team he may have a wealth of information and connections that we still require. We may like Bob in our business!

However now that we have a true performance metric of sales $ p/hr we get the right information to assess the situation and make decisions based on both effectiveness and efficiency.

The third letter in KPI is for indicator.

I see some businesses that create a tremendous number of ”KPI” in the hope that the result will tell me exactly what’s wrong and give me a solution. Sorry that is not going to happen!

Indicator means to point to something, to direct towards, it doesn’t give an exact result and certainly does not solve the issue.

To identify the root cause of an issue and solve it you need to do some investigation. Discuss with staff, stakeholders, and maybe even customers. You need to come up with an action plan and apply a solution to see whether it resolves the issue. There is no way around this.

More KPI will not give you a solution it simply dilutes the “Key” in KPI making it confusing for staff to understand what is important.

Instead invest that time in applying problem solving skills, invest time in discussions with staff and customers. This will not only help resolve existing issues you will also have more engaged staff and customers and it will generate Innovation within your business.

It’s not about the KPI score it’s about the discussion and resolution it’s about moving the KPI in the direction that you want the business to go in.

I see some businesses that create a tremendous number of ”KPI” in the hope that the result will tell me exactly what’s wrong and give me a solution. Sorry that is not going to happen!

What – Easily understood performance metrics that drive people to take action.

Where – should I have KPI in my business?

The short answer is, it depends…

It depends on the core functions of your business the ramifications of cost, speed, quality, and service of each process. The size of the business has an impact, how easy it is to communicate and keep your business on track? The business culture and type of people working within your business will also have impact, unfortunately there is no magic number, no Magic Bullet.

But there are some basic rules you can follow. Where you should have KPI in your business is based on your business strategic direction and its success driver’s.

First focus on those processes and steps that add the most value to your business along with those processes and steps that can cause the most pain in your business if you don’t do them right.

For example in manufacturing where you are heavily systemised and machine-based you absolutely want your KPI at each process get that provides an input for another step or final assembly. This will help improve your quality assurance which is far less costly than adding quality control (I will wrote an article on quality assurance vs quality control – check out my blog in a couple of weeks here).

In larger firms you would typically have your KPI said in each function or area. There is a cost vs benefit decision to be made here. Processes that drive your sales revenue and your main components of cost should have KPI to drive to correct outcomes.

Basically if it’s important to manage that process to be successful in your business I would recommend you set up Ultimate Customer Value KPI in that process.

However don’t forget less is more!

Have less KPI but make them consistent across functions and teams. This will provide a management operating system that allows you to compare teams, divisions, and processes across functions. You will understand which are improving and transforming and which are not.

Setting the right KPI in the right processes is absolutely critical to achieve Financial Peak Performance and business success.

Focus on those processes and steps that add the most value to your business along with those processes and steps that can cause the most pain in your business if you don’t do them right.

Where – where they will have the most impact on both the sales and cost driving processes.

When – to set up and review KPI?

In defining the “When” we have two questions to ask – first of all when should a business implement KPI, and second when/how often should the KPI be reviewed.

The first one is easy – Yesterday, or at least right now!

Whether your business is brand new or mature, in growth mode or in mature stagnation, it doesn’t matter – now is the time to implement KPI. KPI are critical to success whatever stage your business is in.

However for your KPI to be effective they must be aligned to your business strategic direction.

Yes that means you need a strategy before you set KPI. If you don’t have one sit down right now and work it out. It should be super simple and fit on 1 page. Most clients I see have a strategy even if they don’t have it written down. Write it down and tell people about it.

If you need to build out your strategy answer these questions. – Where will you play? How will you win? What needs to be true to succeed?

The second “When” – when should we review and revisit our KPI?

Review is daily this will give very quick response and visibility into your business. If your business is running everyday, your KPI should be running everyday.

It’s not enough to simply review your KPI everyday you must review identify variances, investigate root causes, and take action on a daily basis. That’s not to say you will solve every variance everyday of course some things take time to investigate and get to the best solution. You must be taking down issues and forming actions every single day.

This brings KPI management into the everyday business activities it is no longer a monthly round table of hot air from managers, it becomes the guideline for staff to make every business decision throughout the day.

This is why it is 100% critical that those KPI be aligned to your business strategy.

Review KPI daily this will give very quick response and visibility into your business. If your business is running everyday, your KPI should be running everyday.

When – Now, Every Single Day!

Why – do we have KPI?

To measure stuff of course – we all know that. But why do we want to measure stuff?

The “Why” is not to just to measure something. The “Why” is to determine whether outcomes seen in the execution of our daily business activities is the outcome that we are aiming for based on our business strategy.

Let’s take it one step further, we have a KPI in order to identify variances and take corrective action to ensure we achieve predetermined outcomes within the business goals (strategy).

There have been a ton of studies into happiness within the workplace and one of the key things is that employees want to know their work is valued and are even happier when they’re rewarded for achieving highly valued work.

Another really key “Why” of the KPI is to show the value of the work done, once staff see how their work fits into the Ultimate Customer Value KPI they can immediately understand the value of their contribution to the business.

There you have it the 5 W’s of KPI development.

Get to it – develop your Ultimate Customer Value KPI today.

If this blog resonated with you, I would love to have a chat. Book a FREE consultation to see how I can help your business achieve Financial Peak Performance.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) impact on Australian Businesses – Survey – Please help

Help us to track the Coronavirus (COVID-19) impact on Australian Businesses, just like yours.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) impact on Australian Businesses

Take this short (5 min) survey to indicate how your business is impacted by Corona Virus.

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If you provide your email address we will send you an updated results summary.

This impact study will provide insights to help us provide great free resources to businesses all over Australia.  – Check out our latest resource Protect your business from a COVID-19 recession.


#Time is NOT Money, it is worth so much more

Time is (NOT) money.

Time is worth so much more…..

I was that busy-ness guy. The 80-90 hrs per week, the 260 days of travel, neglecting relationships, caught-up in the day-to-day panic stations of a business – That guy.

But I found a way to #breakfree, to have my #cake and eat it too.

So can you!

** Warning what you see here may change your business life – forever…**

“Time is money!” It’s an old saying but does it still hold true today? I’d say no!
I mean I think there was a time when maybe it was true there was a time when we
weren’t connected 24/7 through our smartphones we didn’t have laptops to
take our home with us in those times where people worked you know 8:00 to
4:00 maybe it was true, but in this day and age it’s just not true anymore.
Time is so much more valuable than Money!
It’s really really important I think to think about that and you know I know
this firsthand I started a business a number of years ago and you
know I was working 80 to 100 hours a week
and I was on the road traveling I was traveling 260 days a year I was missing
seeing my family grow up it was really hurting my relationship with my wife I
was neglecting friends and family really and I wasn’t doing it because I loved it
I mean of course I I was driven and I enjoyed the business and I had loved
growing it and doing those things, but I was really working those long
hours because I didn’t know any other way and I was sort of stuck I was you
know always running from client meetings and sales meetings to fighting fires
with staff you know operational issues dealing with those. Just day-to-day
thinks constantly coming up and you know taking up a lot of time and I and I
we had staff, good staff, and you know they wouldn’t be able to get things done the
way I expected. For a long time I thought you know this is because the
staff I’m wrong you know it’s difficult to get good staff and all these things
and then I dawned on me that it’s not them it’s me! That the
problem is I don’t have a framework to manage
I came from accounting background have a lot of technical
knowledge and but I didn’t really have the the framework and
knowledge to manage these things appropriately so when I when I realized
that I set about changing that. I developed a framework for management
that has become extremely effectively and I’ve actually been able to sell this
framework into very large operations and I’ve just recently adjusted this
framework to be able to sell it to medium-sized and small businesses at a
much more reasonable rate in ways so they can get access to it as well and
really there was sort of three key things that I had to change in order to
achieve this and to achieve what I call financial peak performance which is a
way of teaching your business to manage itself. The first thing that I had to
do is I had to ignore the old way of managing people. Your typical
way of managing people is to you know give them instructions here’s how you do
something go and do this like this and instead really pull back and think
about the WHY rather than how you do it, why you do it and give them some
parameters around what needs to be achieved and then let them work out the
how and you know the funny thing is they actually came up with better ways of
doing it anyway so it was a huge benefit there. The other piece really is around
measuring your business understanding business so I sort of just I just got
rid of the old way of measuring a business. Sales, Profit, monthly reporting and
instead I switched it to what I call Ultimate Customer Values. Which is a way
to really focus on your business from a customer point of view and understand
your business from a customer point of view, this is great because
it adds more value to your customers which then in turn adds value to you business.
Then the last thing I did is I developed short interval feedback sessions and
what these are really a process for your staff to be able to come up with ideas
to problem-solving and make it decisions on their own so that you see you don’t
have to be involved in everything and this was a massive game changer!
This allowed me to step away from business and really allowed the businesses
start managing itself. Now I’m still involved of course but the staff have
taken on you know they took on much more of the day-to-day activities they took
on a lot more of those they took ownership of them and that allowed me to
step back and look on those bigger things you know work on where the
business is going work on managing those bigger items, to make any problem solving
ideas they came with work and you know at the end of all of that I think
so for example today I’ve been heavily an hour of clarity session.
Three, four years ago this would be impossible I just couldn’t get away and
take an hour out to sit down and just think about the business and I think it’s
totally totally critical for you to grow and to really improve so you know these days
I like work less hours, I make more money and the business ticks along without me
which is which is exactly what I was aiming for my business I started a
business to flexibility to have more time with my family to have choices and
you know it didn’t work out that way because I had less choice I had all
of these things going on until I built this framework and so now the framework
is in I have those choices now, I can make those choices.
You can do the same, anyone can do the same in their business, you just need to make
sure that you focus on those key three things and remember it’s not a “magic formula”.
You need to take some time and you need to take some effort but you can do it.
Get a methodology, use a methodology if you want more information about my
Financial Peak Performance methodology then reach out, but you can use
a different methodology. Just get in there and get it done.
Focus the energy and the time and get it done!

Give yourself Permission to take time out – to increase your success

You have permission….
to take time out…
Actually it is your job so make it your mission!

As a business leader it is important to recognise that your role must change from doing to leading.

It is your role to do the heavy thinking for your business.
It’s not a nice to have but a must have!

It is easy to get stuck in the grind, answering questions day in and day out.

Managing every aspect of your business.

Not able to fee yourself from the continued cycle of fighting fires to catching up on last week’s tasks….

I’ve been there.

I thought that I had to be busy to show a good impression to staff, I had to be there, on call to solve all their issues immediately….

That’s my job… isn’t it?

It was my job and I was stuck in a perpetual cycle I couldn’t get out of.

I thought I was doing the right thing, by my customers, mys staff and my business.

But I wasn’t.

Staff relied on my decisions more and more. Not because they couldn’t make decisions but because it wasn’t clear is they should – “Bob asked the boss so I should too”

Customers got frustrated as questions were not answered quickly whenever I was not available.

Innovation dwindled, and the business whilst still successful was losing its lustre….

I was frustrated and so was everyone around me.

Then I gave myself permission to take time out.

I started small 1 hr per week.

At first it was hard.

I had to set up the management support and infrastructure (using the Financial Peak Performance framework) to be able to pry myself away from the day to day.

But it got easier.

Staff struggled too at 1st I wasn’t available to answer every question. I had to give them permission to make decisions.

I had to set the goals and expectations to help them make the right decision.

But the returns were phenomenal, happier staff, better customer service, better quality and more profit!

I give myself permission every week now – here is quick update from last Friday’s.

1 Hour of clarity for a successful business and a better life.

1 Hour of clarity for a successful business and a better life.

This is a simple and extremely effective task, when you consistently apply this you will take your business to the next level!

Today we live in the information age, it’s great, things happen at the touch of a button.

My dad travelled for work he would have to get a bunch of cash in different currencies with him before he left, then if we needed more cash he would have to take a 1/2 day out and go to a bank to exchange money.  To speak with him whilst he was away was a complicated scheduling task.

Now we access cash in any country in the world through a machine, instantly chat over Skype or Face-time.

But there are some downsides.
These days we are busy and distracted, always connected…

Volumes of research tells us that to really solve problems, to really be creative or innovation we need to focus.
Business leaders are constantly being overwhelmed with a barrage of information, decisions, questions, problems.

This overwhelm leads to decision fatigue (yes it’s a real thing), poor judgement, negative attitudes and ultimately hurts both our business and personal life.

I recommend taking 1 hr of clarity to think about the big things that matter in your business.
The things that make your business a massive success.

Its simple but not easy….

Fallow this  simple 10 step plan:

  1. Clear your diary for 1 hr
  2. Find a quiet place no computer/tablet/phone.
  3. NO DISTRACTIONS (see not easy)
  4. Go old school, pen and paper only.
  5. Dedicate the 1st 30 mins to just thinking about the future. ]
  6. Dedicate 10 min to just writing – write your thoughts, your emotions, whatever comes to mind. – REFRAIN FROM PLANNING (that comes later)
  7. Take a break 10 min – have a coffee/water, walk a little stretch
  8. Revisit your notes – spend 10 min defining each item by its outcome ($, hrs, emotional state). This is your success factor.
  9. Put the piece of paper in a safe place.
  10. Give it a few days – go back re-read. Prioritise and create your plan.

This works wonders, try it today!

Want even more Clarity…..?

Book a Free 45 min Strategy Call 

How to succeed in business, Learn the secret skill to business success that Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffet, and Bill Gates share with this Ape.

How to succeed in business like Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffet, and Bill Gates…

From the Business & Science series – by Brad Horan

There are many successful entrepreneurs out there, I am focusing on these 3 however I am sure there are others using the same techniques.

(The Ape is also there for a reason. We’ll get to that soon.)

I am referencing Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffet and Bill Gates because they have some very specific traits that other famous (perhaps more famous) entrepreneurs do not share:

  1. They are 3 of the world’s top 5 richest (by high net worth) people in the world. (see summary later in the article)
  2. Despite their massive empires they are known to have balance in their lives. They actually have time for family and friends.
  3. They have very stable businesses that have proven to return profits over time (although that is arguable for Amazon)

I work with business leaders everyday and it surprises me that so many aspire to be Steve Jobs, or Elon Musk.

When did being busy, working long hours at the expense of friends and family become a measure of success?

Don’t get me wrong they are brilliant minds and very successful but they have both achieved success through incredible hardship and at a great cost to their personal relationships.

It has been reported that Steve Jobs regretted not spending enough time with his family.

Elon Musk… well there have been many reports of crazy long hours, emotional explosions, and poor relations with people in both his professional and personal life.

Despite this both Steve and Elon’s (yes we are on 1st name basis’) jam packed calendars and excessive working hours have somehow become a hallmark of being a successful entrepreneur….


When did being busy, working long hours at the expense of friends and family become a measure of success?

Or worse an aspiration for young leaders….

How and why did this come about?

No-one on their death bed ever said “I wish I spent more time at the office” or “I wish I spent less time with my family and friends”.

Is it the lust for media attention that we have developed? Does having a full calendar equate to innovation and success?

Perhaps (as is my theory) it is simply that they are/were frequently in the media so it is at the forefront of our attention….

Meanwhile….. the richest people in the world DO NOT have full calendars. They make time for family and friends, and are reported to have strong professional and perhaps more importantly personal relationships.

No-one on their death bed ever said “I wish I spent more time at the office” or “I wish I spent less time with my family and friends”.

So if the measure of success should not be being busy, spending long hours at the office, and losing touch with friends and family, what should it be?

That my friend, is a question for another article (or hundreds).

But I do want to highlight you don’t have to spend forever at the office and alienate yourself from loved ones to be have a highly profitable business. That is not to say it is easy or you don’t have to work…

You guessed it!

Work smarter not harder. The Science proves it! – Metacognition, a deeper order of thinking.

– Oxford Dictionary

I.1         metacognition

I.1.1   NOUN

mass nounPsychology 

Awareness and understanding of one’s own thought processes.

Metacognition – this is deeper thinking, and its a key ingredient for creativity and innovation.

Is deeper thinking becoming extinct?

It’s funny, we are the most sophisticated life-form on earth (that we know of), yet we are thinking deeply less than ever.

I recently saw a great talk on millennials by Simon Sinek a famous management theorist. He suggests that society has failed the younger generations who expect instant gratification, are constantly on their devices and struggle to hold enough attention span to hold a conversation much less to spend time deep in thought.

Our addiction to devices, technology, social media, and instant gratification is killing off deep thought, and with it creativity and innovation.

But I’m too busy to spend time just thinking…..

A quick history lesson.

A penny for your thoughts….

This saying (c.1535) was used to encourage re-engagement when someone was lost in thought. This metaphor indicates that thinking was valuable (offering what was 1/2 days wage just for your thoughts).

Scientists have discovered that other primates like Great Apes and Orangutans are also deep thinkers and that this ability is what enables them to solve problems and innovate.

So history shows that deep thinking was a very important part of our evolution.

Why you need Metcognition to be a great business leader.

As a business leader you must make the most impact in your business. ‘Thinking sessions’ help you accomplish this.

What is your role as a Business leader?

A quick Google search will provide 822 million answers in less than 1 second (amazing) they contain words like inspiring, motivating, instilling, problem-solving, strategy, innovation, honesty, empathy and the list goes on.

Ultimately your job is to ensure the business can perform at it’s very best which will require leveraging other people and technologies as well as employing innovation to always stay ahead your competition.

The research shows in order to inspire people, be creative, and innovate you must be self-aware. To be self-aware you must think about thinking, employ a higher level of thinking, deeper thinking otherwise know as Metacognition.

What now? You ask?

Put it into practice.

In contrast to Steve Jobs and Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos spends breakfast with his family most mornings. Warrant Buffet claims his calendar is 80% empty (yes empty that is not a misprint), and Bill Gates blocks out weeks at a time for intensive relaxation and thought.

These leaders allocate significant time in their calendars to thinking (Warren Buffett built his whole calendar around thinking).

Jeff Bezos will only schedule meetings that need complex problem solving in the mornings to reduce decision fatigue. That is how highly he rates thinking.

These business leaders are in the top 3 wealthiest people in the world and still manage to have time for friends and family.

They will tell you that allocating calm time to think has a massive impact on how well they perform as business leaders.

As a business leader, you don’t need to be the first one in, the last to leave, or have the busiest calendar, but you must make the most impact in your business. ‘Thinking sessions’ help you accomplish this.

In a world that is growing more complex and rapidly changing, the calendars of successful CEOs and business leaders will look more like Warren Buffett’s and less like Elon Musk’s!

If Apes can do it, so can you!

If you like this article there are plenty more of other interesting article (I’m also a big Ted Talk/ Tedex fan).

About the Author:

Brad Horan is a director of Lucrature – Financial Peak Performance.

All great businesses start off with a seed, an idea. They need support and nurturing to grow. It is not possible for one business leader to master all the necessary skills to really grow a business into greatness.

It’s confusing there are so many conflicting business management techniques and frankly many are difficult or impossible to put into practise.

Traditionally good advice is difficult and expensive to access, but armed with the belief that every business deserves a chance, that with great business advice everyone in the economy wins, he is disrupting the consulting market. He is leveraging technology and community learning to make top tier advice more accessible and affordable.

He has took 20 years experience as a chartered accountant and business consultant, distilled all that knowledge down into Financial Peak Performance, a business framework for mid-sized businesses that teaches business leaders to not only survive but supercharge their business.

Want to know more connect with Brad in LinkedIn or just send a message and say hi. He loves a coffee and chat!

Wealthiest people based on Net Wealth as reported in the Business Insider Jan 16 2018

  1. Jeff Bezos (Net Wealth) — $108.9 billion.
  2. Bill Gates (Net Wealth) — $91.9 billion.
  3. Warren Buffett (Net Wealth) — $90.1 billion.

Ultimate Customer Value – Why Every Business Needs it!

Ultimate Customer Value is critical to success.

Businesses often try to understand their customer outcomes by gut feel…

or worse by negative experiences e.g. complaints.

No complaints – customers must be happy….. Really do you go to complain to your local supermarket before you go to the big mall supermarket?

By the time someone makes a complaint you have pretty much already lost them.

Ultimate Customer Value helps you determine how you are delivery against your customer promises in real time! It’s no so much a system and methodology for defining and measuring your business against your customers’ experience.

UCV are the only measurements you need in your business!

Want to know how to set your Ultimate Customer Value KPI? Check out our Masterclass