Entrepreneurs are ambitious and excited people.
They have a brilliant ability to imagine a bigger and better reality. They can envision the future and set brilliant goals to pursue that future.
The problem for most entrepreneurs isn't their ability to come up with a bigger future or to envision.
The problem is that once they see that bigger and better future, they then ask themselves the wrong question.
They ask themselves: "How do I accomplish this?"
This is the WORST question an entrepreneur can ask themselves.
This question leads to a great deal of pain, frustration, and ultimately, procrastination.
Rather than asking yourself "How?", you should ask yourself "Who?"
This is the insight that Dan Sullivan, the founder of Strategic Coach, got after coaching over 30,000 successful entrepreneurs.
When you begin asking, "Who can help me accomplish this?" then you stop trying to do everything yourself. You stop procrastinating and you stop spending large amounts of time in your head. Dan calls this "dread time"-- or the time you spend dreading to do the work you don't want to do or don't know how to do.
Remove the dread time and starting WHO'ing your way to all of your dreams.
The better you can get at asking, "Who?" and then getting smart and intelligent people to help execute your goals, the more successful you can become.
As Dan is known for saying, "Millionaires ask 'how?' while Billionaires ask 'Who?'"
He would know. He's coached more successful entrepreneurs than anyone alive.
Applying "WhoNotHow" As An Entrepreneur For Mind-Blowing Results
I recently had experience applying this principle.
I was organizing and running a mastermind group. But I'd never done that before. I didn't even know where to start.
So I spent a few months procrastinating. There was a lot of dread time and very little progress made.
So I decided to apply what Dan calls, WhoNotHow!
Jon Berghoff became my "Who." Jon is the founder of Flourishing Leadership Institute, and creator of Xchange, an approach to creating exponential outcomes, through choreographing conversations that unlock group genius.
Xchange is the go-to approach for industry-leading companies like Sensi, BMW, Facebook, Vitamix, Nike, and has also been relied upon by leading peer-to-peer learning organizations / mastermind groups, like Vistage, Keller Williams, Gobundance, Quantum Leap Mastermind, and Front Row Dads, Additionally, over 250 forward thinking coaches and consultants, representing 21 countries, have now been trained and certified in the XChange approach.
The companies and leaders who leverage Xchange are considered to be at the forefront of an evolutionary leap, in how human beings lead and learn. Central to their philosophy is that "command-and-control" approaches to leadership are broken and ineffective. Rather than answers known by only a few at the top, Xchange emphasizes questions targeted toward as many minds as possible-- what they call collective intelligence or group genius.
The problem is, most people don't know how to do it. Neither did I, until I got 60 minutes with Jon.
Jon helped me organize my mastermind event with their methods in less than an hour. This is something that would have taken me dozens of hours, and there's no way I would have created something as powerful, simple, and clear as what Jon helped me create.
Jon and his team of researchers, consultants, and behavioral scientists have spent tens of thousands of hours honing the Xchange method. He can look at any situation in which a group of people is trying to shape their future, solve a complex and shared problem, or dramatically multiply the learning across a mastermind group like the one I was trying to organize, and INSTANTLY see multiple pathways for unlocking group genius - fast, naturally, and consistently.
And with his experience, that's exactly what he did for me.
Expertise is powerful, and if you want to be very successful, you need to leverage experts in your network. You need to stop asking "How do I do this?" and start asking, "Who is the best in the world at this?"
According to Kevin Harrington, the reason most people fail is that they hire people who aren't smarter than them. The smartest people in the world are those who hire people smarter than them! If you want to be the best team, then you get the best players. If you want to be average, then get average players.
It's all in your mindset.
A Fundamentally Different Approach To "Leading" and "Learning"
Unsuccessful people think they must first have enough money to hire big players. What they don't realize is that it is the key players that increase profits. You'll never get there thinking small. Play big, create powerful incentives for everyone involved, and create something beyond what you could ever create on your own.
This is exponential thinking, and that's really what Xchange is all about. Exponential transformation through the unlocking of group genius, which doesn't happen with traditional perspectives, models, and attempts at leadership.
Exponential leaders and entrepreneurs listen more than they speak. They allow the voice and insights of the group to guide the ship to a much higher and more powerful place than a single vision could ever do.
So, not only did I want Jon's help in organizing my event, I decided to leverage and team with his growing team of who's. Jon connected me with Adair Cates, a stand-out in the Xchange community who has been in the leadership and personal development spaces for over ten years. Adair uses whole-person and team-focused techniques which have won her organization numerous awards.
By combining her unique approach to helping leaders and their teams transform with the Xchange methodology, it would be obvious that Adair was a capable "WHO" to facilitate my first mastermind.
Who-thinking accelerates progress and energy, while how-thinking creates dread-time, procrastination, and a lack of progress. How-thinking is small-minded.
To further illustrate the power of "who"... when Adair and I wanted to get support from another trained facilitator, she simply put an "ask" into the Xchange private community, and within 24 hours, had 8 qualified candidates offering to fly in and help our mastermind event. We were honored to have Rachelle Nieman join us, who was not only trained in the Xchange approach, but knew exactly how to support the environment, and Adair's facilitation.
I had a few phone calls with each of them to prep for the event. These phone calls to less than 3 hours altogether, and I had complete peace of mind. They took great care of me.
This is one of the most powerful reasons for applying WhoNotHow, you don't have to over-stress the details. Those details are handled by the experts you're working with.
Peace Of Mind: An Essential Yet Rare Experience For Entrepreneurs
Peace of mind is a powerful and rare commodity in entrepreneurship. The entrepreneur tries to do too much.
When the week of the event came, Adair and Rachelle were there to make it happen. All I needed to do was pay attention to the people who flew from all over the country to have a transformational experience.
Adair facilitated the whole experience. She took our group through multiple experiences and it was completely seamless. She knew exactly how to engineer psychological safety, how to choreograph powerful conversations, and ultimately unlock the highest potential of the group - individually and collectively.
I spoke with one of the participants and asked her how the event was going. She said, "I'm so glad you have Adair here. You are the talent. You need to have people around you so that your brilliance can shine. You wouldn't be able to do that if you were trying to take care of the logistics and facilitation."
I'm blown away by how easy and successful the experience was.
Also, I'm blown away by everything I learned from this experience. When you learn from and work with experts, you quickly can learn what they have spent decades honing. You learn through experience rather than by theory.
Questions to Consider
How fast are you learning?
How much peace of mind do you have when trying something new?
How much dread time are you dealing with?
Are you stuck in how-mode or focused on finding the right who's?