In his book entitled “How The Best Get Better”, management consultant Dan Sullivan describes a pattern of behavior that he has coined the “Rugged Individualist”. A “Rugged Individualist” is someone who feels that they can do everything by themselves and that they don’t need anyone else to help them. The problem with trying to do everything yourself is that you will eventually hit a ceiling where you cannot do any more. You get held back because you only have so much capacity, put an Agile way, your velocity (A measure of how much progress you are making) is limited.
In order to increase our own personal velocity (I.E. Get more done in the same amount of time) we need to embrace what Dan calls “Unique Ability® Teamwork”. Basically we need to determine what our strengths and our weaknesses are. Rather than trying to improve our weaknesses, we should focus on our strengths by surrounding ourselves with people who can do what we can’t.
For example, I am getting ready to finish a room in my basement. I am pretty confident that I could eventually learn how to do the electrical work, but by the time I figured it out it would have been cheaper to just hire an electrician. By forming my own “team” in other areas of my life, I have been able to find the time to focus on my strengths, rather than being bogged down doing things like; mowing my yard, getting supplies ready for my classes, etc.
Many of you might be thinking, “But, Brian it takes money to form your own team.” Sometimes we just need to get creative… Do you have kids? While they might not appreciate it now, they will learn the value of hard work by completing chores. Another option might be to barter services with your neighbors; assuming that you don’t like to clean and your neighbor doesn’t like to shop… you go to the grocery store to shop for both households and your neighbor cleans your home while you are out.
Another option for forming your own team for little money is to sign-up for a service such as FancyHands.com. Sites like this one will allow you to request tasks to be done, such as find a reputable electrician, for as little as $5 a task. As we have realized the value of having our own team, sites similar to this are popping up all over the internet (~50 Sites To Get Things Done For About $5 – http://tbcg.co/1h8NPuD).
Want to form your own team in order to increase your personal velocity? Make a list of all the things that you are not good at, don’t have time to do, or just plain don’t enjoy doing. Look for ways to add members of your team to take care of these tasks for you and you will be well on your way to freeing up your time to spend doing the things that you love.
Tell us about what you have others doing for you in the comments section below.