What is Your Job?

The post prior to this one was about two football coaches, Bill Belichick and Nick Saban, who succeed beyond all comparison. One thing they share is the simple message to their players to, “Do you job!”

That’s true for you too, but with such a complex business and so many moving parts, you might sometimes wonder what your job is. You may conclude that you have dozens of jobs, but I’m going to make the case that you only have two:

  • Customer Acquisition
  • Great Design

That’s it. In a perfect world, that’s all you would do. But in an imperfect world, you have to try to build an infrastructure or scaffolding to support these activities. For example, you may have made commitments to social media or other online platforms in the name of “customer acquisition.”

And you may have purchased and spent hundreds of hours learning AutoCAD or some other drawing tool in the name of “great design.”

Then there’s accounting, legal, contracts, other software, employees, sourcing and on and on.

But if you think about it, all of those are only in the name of the Big Two. In fact, what you will find is that some of those peripheral activities are enablers and some are “disablers.”

Some truly help you in the pursuit of customers and doing great design, while others erect barriers to same.

I always try to draw a map of the way information flows through a firm when doing consulting work. I make a list of virtually every software tool, app, process, workflow, etc. that I can find, and then try to connect the dots to see if these are enabling or blocking.

That would be a good idea for you as well as we come to the end of the year. Track your time for a week or two. Jot down what programs and tools you are interacting with, including ones you may not think about much like your email and calendar. And then ask theses question (another great Post-it-Note?),

  • “Is this moving me closer to acquiring a new customer, or further away?”
  • “Is this enabling me to do more great design, or getting in the way?”

After all, those are your only two jobs. Now, as I said in the previous post, “Do your job!”

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