People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill. They want a quarter-inch hole.
If you work in marketing, you have certainly heard this quote by professor Levitt. But that is not true, because nobody wants a quarter-inch hole in their wall. They might want to install some shelves to keep things organized, or perhaps they want to fix the furniture to the wall to prevent it from falling, or they might want a tool that makes them feel more comfortable and ready when there is some work to do around the house.
The point is that you should never stop at your product, nor you should stop at the first thing people do with your product.
Go further, understand their motivations, accompany them on the journey they are taking, and you will be with them all their lives.
Doing is what anchors the vision. Vision is what lifts the doing.
Without vision, doing is pointless activity. At best, it is meeting standards, delivering on goals, complying to rules. It ends the moment it has achieve its purpose. It is static as it does not allow for growth.
Without doing, vision is but a dream. A gap that will just be filled with delusion and dissatisfaction. The continuous wondering of a restless mind. It is static as well as it does not set you out on a journey.
Doing and vision go together. Keep this in mind the next time you sit down to work on your goals.
Two years ago, I committed to becoming a more active person. I had started running regularly and I had set myself the goal to run a half-marathon by the summer of 2021.
And it’s ok. Because when you stretch your practice, some times you grow. Other times, you fail.
I have known I would have failed for some times now. So, my focus has been on two things. First, on the times I have actually went running. While you are building an habit, keep in mind the times you have actually stuck to it, and it will be more difficult to be overwhelmed by the despair for the beats you have missed. Second, on the commitment I had taken, which is still valid: I want to become a more active person.
If you do focus your attention on these two things, it’s going to be a whole lot easier to get back on track.
What is success?
Is it revenue? Profit? Cash?
Is it a title? A promotion? A bonus?
Is it likes? Shares? Comments?
Is it cutting corners, jumping on the bandwagon, getting distracted by the new thing?
Is it doing more of the same?
Is it the achievements of those around you?
Is it how many of your employees can afford a house, a baby, a debt repayment?
We quickly get stuck in habits. We think that just because things have been done in a certain way for a long time, just because somebody has achieved some status by doing that, then our only option is to follow the same path. Often miserably.
Find the courage to define what success means to you.
You need to subtract, not add.
You need to cut, not expand.
You need to combine, not fragment.
You need to connect, not divide.
And when you are down to the bare minimum, that’s when clarity kicks in. In life, in writing, in business, in projects, in marketing, in communication, you do not get to deep understanding by adding chaos on top of chaos.
And when you are down to the bare minimum, that’s when you can slowly start building. On solid foundation, in the direction you have chosen, taking the right people with you.