The FAA requires a runway length of 7,500 feet for a 747 airplane to take-off and land. This length adds on considerable margin for slippery surfaces from poor weather or possibly malfunction. Have you ever noticed how exact air traffic control and schedules are? Your plane has an exact take-off time. It takes a few minutes to depart from the gate and taxi to the assigned runway strip. Then it stops, awaits permission from control, and then barrels down the runway lifting off into the great blue. There are so many great analogies and metaphors that speakers and writers have used over the years to compare this airplane take-off process to some process in our lives or businesses. I was on a coaching call with Josh Melton in early November 2021 and he said this. "Ken, you need to learn how to clear the runway."
Let me explain the issue first. I had booked a month-long trip to Florida over the summer and had 6 months to accomplish a significant goal. This is explained full in "A New Freedom Vision". Essentially, I had to add 5 new buildings in my commercial cleaning company and delegate them to 5 new team members. But I would need to delegate and develop systems as a foundation for this all to stay together while I was gone. This seemed very doable once Coach Josh started guiding me. I was taxiing onto the runway and ready to take off. There were just a few giant obstacles blocking my take-off.
I was operating under this assumption. I would complete all of these major life events and drains on my time. Then I would go all-in on building and delegating my cleaning business. I assumed that I'd have the time. Josh didn't like this plan. He 100% supported all of my priorities and for the reasons I've stated. He just didn't like my procrastinating plan. I was using this stuff as my excuse for my lack of cleaning business success toward the plan and goal of Florida.
Josh addressed all of my worry and concerns with the metaphor of the airplane on the runway. He simply said this. "Ken, a plane needs 7,500 feet to take-off. It needs the runway to be clear of debris, snow, or ice. Not to mention, the airplane itself needs to fully inspected, fully fueled, safe, and operational. Your airplane is not ready yet and your runway is blocked with all of the things going on in your life. You feel like you need to wait until the runway is clear before you can take off. The truth is this. The runway will never be totally cleared. Something else will always find a way to block your flight plan. Just when you think you're 2 weeks away from having time, something else pops us. Murphy's Law states that if something bad can happen, it will happen. Parkinson's Law states that the scope of a project always expands to the time you have to fill it. Ken, you are distracted. There will never be a perfect time to take off. Successful people learn how to always clear the runway so they can do the most important things at the time. You have to learn how to clear the runway yourself, every day!"
What is on your runway right now that's holding you back from your number one goal? Do you want to talk about that? Make sure to check out the many free & paid resources available at the Smart Cleaning School website. Also, do you have questions for me? Book a free coaching call on my website!
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.