In my last two Carfagno Cleaning updates, I shared the story of Doug Floro and how a seed turned into an opportunity. I started this week by completing his house cleaning proposal with 6 options and hit send! Like I always say, you never know! Right after the proposal, I wrote, published, and repurposed (to social media) a new cleaning newsletter.
I also sent out my monthly invoices and something amazing happened. One of my office clients asked if I would be willing to bill ahead for 6 months instead of one. That was an easy answer... "YES!" I read three things into this request:
Now, let's get to the meat of this week's episode. In 18 Gutter Balls, I shared the story of my infamous bowling game of 12 when I was 12. My 83-year-old Pop-Pop still heckles me about that day! The final question I posed was this. "Have you learned yet?" I was doing the same thing, over-and-over again, and expecting a different result. This is the definition of insanity by the late, great Albert Einstein. I was guilty of it that day with my engraved bowling ball and now I get to answer the question.
I shared a detailed account of how to wrap up your year in review. It's called Think Week. I have followed this process every year and even published the podcast episode ahead of my 2019 version. Let me get real and transparent. "I haven't learned yet, Pop-Pop." I started to do Think Week by reflecting of my 2019 goals and comparing them to what I accomplished. I achieved about 67%. Not bad. But I dug deeper and saw something that demanded explanation. So I pulled out my 2018 notebook for Think Week and saw the same pattern. To make matters worse, I pulled out every year back to 2012. This revealed that I have been a broken record.
I've been doing the same thing over and over and over, expecting my end-of-year results to change. But at the end of each year, I threw a 6 instead of a strike (using the bowling analogy). Some years, I did throw a gutter ball. Here's what I realized. I am a dreamer, an optimist. I love working on my passion projects and I've always had one. Early on, it was an Amway business with Teresa. Then it was writing a novel for dads to read to their kids, followed by coaching & consulting cleaning company owners. The mistake I repeated was setting my SMART goals to grow my passionate side-hustle, while setting the mark for my main business for "just enough". Whether I was an engineer or a solo cleaning owner, I have not set SMART growth goals to raise our level of income past 'just making it' to 'prospering'. I chose to set my SMART growth goals on my side-hustle, that I WANTED to do, yet had no proof of concept! My optimism kicked in as well because I made many assumptions that weren't realistic or attainable. So I'd complete a year with the same main business income and a side income that barely increased. But I was happy and rationalized that I did good because I loved doing it.
If you remember from my Make Your Goals SMART episode, an unattainable goal is SMRT. Sure, I figured out how to stabilize and optimize my solo cleaning business. I had SMART goals every 90 days, but they weren't for more income. I set them to have MORE TIME at the SAME INCOME. I looked at 8 Think Week notebooks and fell into a short term depression and frustration. I couldn't believe that after 30 years, I was still throwing gutter balls. Why would I NOT set growth goals on my main business that was tried and tested? I could have doubled my income so much faster. These are the questions I was left pondering and quite frankly, sobbing about on that hardwood floor with 8 notebooks.
This was so visceral that I was forced to make a change. Coming out of Think Week was different this time. 2020 was going to be different. I have labeled it VISION 20/20. "I have learned, Pop-Pop." I made the change and set my growth SMART goals on my new solo cleaning business and activity SMART goals on my side passion projects. I am super excited to see where this year ends up compared to last.
How about you?
Previous Show Mentioned: "Think Week"
The Smart Cleaning School Podcast helps cleaning business owners from start-up to the struggling solo to the striving seven-figure get SMARTER in their businesses, reshape their mindset, increase productivity, clear the overwhelm, and get clarity through SMART goal-setting & personal accountability. Ken Carfagno is a lifetime learner and teacher. His mission is to help visionaries make the impact they were meant to make.