Dan Sullivan, the founder of Strategic Coach, is considered by many to be the #1 entrepreneurial thinker and coach.

Over the past 30 years, his company Strategic Coach has had over 20,000 highly successful entrepreneurs as clients.

Dan simplifies the entrepreneur's lives by helping them clarify their unique ability, their vision, their ideal audience, their team, and their collaborators.

In this article, I'm going to break down 4 "who's" that Dan helps entrepreneurs maximize.

When you focus on "Who" instead of "How," then you can go from average to 10X successful, and even on to 100X growth.

Here's the 4 "Who's":

1. Yourself (Clarify Your Unique Ability)

The first "Who" is yourself. Most people don't have high enough standards to truly clarify the type of work they love doing. Instead, most people "deal" with work they hate. 

Your "Unique Ability" as Dan calls it is your "What" and "Why." It's why you do what you do (your "Purpose"), and the specific activities you enjoy doing. 

The more time you spend focused on your Unique Ability, and the less time you spend on activities you don't like, the happier, more innovative, and more successful you will be.

2. Your Audience (Who Do You Want To Be A Hero To?)

The second "Who" is your audience. Specifically, the people you want to create value to in the market place.

Dan has his entrepreneurs ask: "Who do I want to be a hero to?"

Who do YOU want to be a hero to?

Who do you want to help?

Who's life do you want to improve?

Who do you want to give value to?

When you clarify who you want to be a hero to, then you can know your mission and purpose in life. It's to serve them through your Unique Abilities-- those activities you do extremely well.

3. Your Team (The "Who's" Who Take Care Of The "How's")

The third "Who" is your team.

Once you clarify your VISION and the people you want to be a HERO to (your audience), then your next job is to get your team clear on how to execute that.

Dan has a framework he calls, "V.O.T.A."

  • V = Vision
  • O = Obstacles
  • T = Transformation
  • A = Action

The vision of the entrepreneur creates obstacles. Between you and your goal are the "How's" that must get done in order for the goal to be achieved. 

If your goal is beyond where you currently are, then there are tasks, challenges, and other "obstacles" to providing the level of value you want to create. 

It is not your job to solve or "do" the obstacles. 

Your job, as the entrepreneur, is to cast the vision. The clearer the vision, the clearer the obstacles between you and the vision. If your vision isn't clear, your team won't know how to make that vision real.

When you have the right "Who's" they can then transform the obstacles into effectives strategies. Once strategies are in place, then effective action toward the vision can occur.

The entrepreneur stays in their Unique Abilty. They don't execute on all of the "How's" to tackle the obstacles. The entrepreneur gets "Who's" to take care of the "How's."

4. Collaborators (Your "Free Zone" Partners)

The fourth "Who" are experts or other organizations outside of your business. These are people who also want to serve the same audience but in a way totally different from you.

If you want to serve your audience to a higher and different level, without changing your business model, you can join forces with other entrepreneurs. 

In order to do this effectively, you must have what Dan calls "Cash confidence," meaning money isn't your initial motivation. Instead, new capability for serving your audience-- those people you want to be a hero to-- is your motivation. 

As you collaborate with other entrepreneurs, you'll be able to SEE opportunities to serve your audience in unique ways. You'll create a Unique Collaboration. 

Through that collaboration, you'll leave all the competition behind. Your former "competition" won't be able to see the new opportunities you see through your collaboration. You'll create a "Blue Ocean."

Competition is for chumps.

Collaboration is for people who want to go 100X and be heroes.


How are you doing on these 4 "Who's"?