Did you ever have an idea for a product, service, or a book? Did you get pissed off when years later you saw that product or service and it was wildly successful? What was the difference? EXECUTION! There are millions of book ideas out there, thousands of problems waiting to be solved by the next entrepreneur with the big ideas. The difference is execution. The work of actually making it happen is the difficult part.
Tim Ferriss says that if you want to write a book you need to dedicate a year, at least, and it needs to be your number one priority. Nothing else, or guess what. It’s probably not going to happen. Once you right that book, how committed are you to selling the book and the idea or story that it is conveying? Again the idea is easy, writing the book and selling it is the hard part. There are 1000s of better written books out there that you have never heard of that are languishing on some obscure bookshelf or a box in a closet . They were well written, but no one sold them.
Ever see a new restaurant startup in your town, which seems like a good idea, has a nice location. Only to notice that they are never open, and when you ask about them to locals they say, it isn’t very good, they don’t have a very good menu, and they are never open. Again, the idea for the restaurant was the easy part. Signing the lease a commitment, but easy. Being open a lot, listening to your customers feedback and executing on the restaurant, that is the hard part. I recommend Kitchen Confidential by the late Anthony Bourdain for some insight in that world.
I would love to give you an easy 15 point list on how to make execution, and the required follow through and grit required to do any of the above, a simple reality, but there isn’t one. It requires dedication, goal setting, time management, and above all work.
Most of us have day jobs. We get to slog it out for a minimum of 8 hours a day, plus commute and when we get home we want to work on our dreams and making them into a reality. The bottom line is those dreams become reality one hour at a time. And if it takes 5000 or 10000 hours to make that dream into a reality, you do the math, how many days, weeks, months is it going to take. It’s a lot. Something else is going to have to give to make room for this dream to become a reality. Your going to have to sacrifice. Some things might be easy to give up, like not watching TV. Some things are tougher like sleeping a lot less. When I got my MBA it took me 5 years at night school. I went to class from 6 to 10 pm 2 nights per week, worked full time and use to wake up at 4 am to study and do my home work. It is amazing how quiet it seems at 4 am. Only the cat is awake.
I am one of those dreamers. I have work full time, have 3 businesses on the side, and have a million other ideas. Focusing and execution to make a few of there other million ideas is key to that success.