Hi Friends! This week, as I prepare for the Total Business Blueprint workshop (our 7th one, wow!) class I teach, I was reading from Seth Godin and wanted to share his thoughts mixed with my own:

There are two kinds of cooks:

One is very skilled at following the recipe. Quality control, consistency and diligence.
The other understands how the recipe works, sees patterns and opportunities and changes the recipe to fit the problem to be solved.
It’s about metaphor in addition to process. Both are useful. If you think this is a post about cooking, you might be the first kind of cook.
I compare the early stages of implementation of a system to an Ant-Farm (did you ever have one of these when you were a kid?). In the beginning – it’s super interesting! There is a blank slate of dirt….and slowly the ants dig down and create their tunnel system and the tunnels connect to a hive…and watching this flurry of activity is fun and engaging. But….once the ants have done their work and the tunnel system is there….it’s kind of boring to watch. There’s nothing new being created.
In a similar sense…In the early stages of creating your system (your conveyor belt way of doing mortgages) it’s super interesting! You’re carefully making sure that each part of the system connects seamlessly to the next and that the flow has a certain feel to it. Detailing out each step and how it connects to the next is engaging and creative work. Creation and execution of this check-mark-box style system is just like the first type of chef – if you follow the recipe, you will deliver a beautiful mortgage-chocolate-cake to every single client. Just as you wouldn’t dare add an extra ingredient to the cake you’re making, you wouldn’t dare change any ingredients to the mortgage system.
Once the conveyor-belt-system is in place and you have mastered it….it can be kind of boring (just like the ant-farm). This is where the second kind of cook comes into play – mastery of the system (or the recipe) means you can add your own flavor – you can tweak the recipe. What if your system is primarily intended to communicate by email but you have someone that doesn’t read email? Change the recipe a bit and make your communication through text or phone call. What if your system is intended to primarily help with forward mortgages and you start to originate reverse? Change the recipe a bit and make it work for reverse.

The point? You can’t change a recipe that doesn’t exist. If you don’t have grandma’s recipe for her amazing chocolate-cake it will take a lot of trial and error to re-create that recipe (or you may never actually re-create it). It all starts with the recipe. This is why Total Business Blueprint exists- because I learned the hard way that I had no recipe, no system, no real method. Once I created my system, everything changed.

Hope you enjoyed this week’s ‘longer than normal’ #WednesdayWisdom!