Podcast: Blake Stratton


This week Dr. Ted McElroy sat down with Blake Stratton to discuss running a better business by leveraging your strengths.

You can check out their full conversation here, by searching "EyeCode Media" in your favorite podcast app.


Read the full transcript below:


Blake Stratton

Blake: [00:00:00] Awesome. Good to see you. Good. Seeing you as

[00:00:03] well.

[00:00:06] Excited to do a little podcast and with you.

[00:00:08] Ted: [00:00:08] Yeah. you know, and, well, for me, it's a little podcasting for you. It's a lot more podcasting as you're doing it every single week. how do you guys keep up that schedule, I guess is the hard part I'm y'all are y'all stacking them, doing them all at one time.

[00:00:23] I mean, how are y'all doing that?

[00:00:24] Blake: [00:00:24] Yeah, so we, second, I'm gonna just that, here we go. So we used to do just one day of recording a month. That was back when we were all together in the office and life was simple. restaurants and bars were open and we would just batch record a bunch. And since March we shifted for awhile, we shifted to just recording every week.

[00:00:56] And part of that was because the world was changing so fast. Like what was relevant last month feels inappropriate this month type of thing. So we just said, let's take this one week at a time. And now we're doing a, about every other week. We'll record a couple of episodes. some were a little bit ahead, but.

[00:01:18] Usually we do every other week. We'll record two in a row as things even out a little bit, but it's still like this over zoom. So it's a little different. I personally miss the batch days, I'd rather just get kind of in the podcast sound and plow through. Right. But, this allows us to keep pace with the world and keep pace with.

[00:01:41] It's kind of a different perspective because we can get feedback from listeners on recent episodes and actually incorporate stuff that we hear. So that has its advantages.

[00:01:52] Ted: [00:01:52] Right. Right. So are you coming from the studio you're coming from your home? Where are you doing everything when you're doing your podcasts and such?

[00:02:02] Blake: [00:02:02] Yeah, from right here. So I have an office that's adjacent to our co-working space and. That's great. Cause it's just, we have sort of a series of single offices and so it's, you know, still isolated, but allows me to separate from home, which is a very good thing for all parties. in terms of recording for a while, I was recording, you know, in April and then.

[00:02:34] Most of may. I was actually at home recording in my closet and stuff. This is, this is definitely an upgrade. Yeah.

[00:02:43] Ted: [00:02:43] I've toyed with recording in my closet today versus doing it here in the den. But I got both. I just kinda like having some light a little bit more than just staring at my clothes. Kind of creepy, just staring at your clothes all day long.

[00:02:57] You know what I mean? Weird. But, yeah, this is, it was a lot of, and it's I'm bro. I really enjoy doing these and hopefully you're continuing to enjoy doing on your podcasts. It sounds like you and Courtney you're having a blast.

[00:03:10] Blake: [00:03:10] Yeah. It's, it's, it's a lot of fun for sure. I enjoy podcasting. How, remind me, you may have mentioned this in one of your emails, but how many.

[00:03:18] How long have you been doing this? How many episodes in are you?

[00:03:21] Ted: [00:03:21] I have been doing this since the beginning of the year. Let's say published. well, I'll take that back. I interviewed my co-host well, excuse me. I'm his cohost. you know, truly, I mean, not like you and Courtney are coasting. I mean, I'm literally like the, you know, I'm Robin.

[00:03:37] Out of Batman, you know, that kind of thing. And barely at that, you know, you know, the boy wonder barely. so he, he basically has been kind enough to share this platform with me, which is just, so sweet and nice because he could have said, nah, you know, you could do your own thing, but he's really helped me a lot on that side of it.

[00:03:54] Cause I, I, I enjoy this. Process of how this works. And so I've been at it for about a year now and well, almost, but I haven't done a lot of episodes. I've done probably eight episodes, which that's, you know, it's hard. It's been trying to get the time and doing it right. Part of it's been trying to get people to agree to do this, you know, that's the other part.

[00:04:15]because I guess they just, don't quite a lot of people still don't get quite the hang of podcasts. I'm still amazed at how many people really don't. The podcast yet, but it's continuing to grow.

[00:04:37] welcome to the vision of leadership podcast. I'm your host, Ted McElroy. This podcast is dedicated to helping you find your wins, have a better quality of life and become the best leader you can be. Hey, have you subscribed to this podcast yet? Don't miss an episode, they're worth every single thing you paid for them, which is nothing because they're free.

[00:04:57] I invite you to subscribe to the podcast by hitting the subscribe button and give us a rating and a review on your specific podcast player. This helps us with our podcast rankings and makes it easier for people to find us. And as always, please support those who help support

[00:05:10] Blake: [00:05:10] us.

[00:05:37] Ted: [00:05:37] On episode 102 of this podcast, Chris interviewed Justin Quan, Michelle Andrews and Richard Ruth. They pointed out that as a profession, we had done a great job of letting our patients know that myopia is not a big deal. If you can see 2020, there is no worry. It is the high myopes that are more danger.

[00:05:54] And as they said, that message is tragic. Any myopia has a higher risk of maculopathy glaucoma and earlier cataract development in the, my site one day clinical trials, only 4% of study participants who got procure one days stayed stable in their myopia progression over the three-year period. That means you can confidently say parent by not going to a system geared to slow them up your progression.

[00:06:18] There is a 96% chance your child's vision will get worse. This may take away some of the choice your child has in the future as to how they will correct their vision choice. Not fear of the disease associations with my OPA is what best resonates with parents when it comes to my opiate control for their children.

[00:06:36] And with Cooper visions my site one day, we now have an FDA approved, single use contact lens to lessen the progression of myopia in our patients. Contact your CooperVision representative to find out more about my site. One day contact lenses. Welcome to the vision of leadership podcast. This is Ted McElroy, and I am really thrilled today to have, as our guests, Blake Stratton, Blake is a business consultant on the sales team with Michael Hyatt and company.

[00:07:01] He's a formerly been in the music industry in Nashville, Vegas as a musician, a songwriter, but also was getting the love of doing sales and marketing when he was in that. And, he also has a cohost of a podcast called focus on this with his cohost Courtney Baker. and I guess I'll start off with the first question.

[00:07:18] How do you get to be the most productive podcast on the internet? Yeah, because that's really,

[00:07:25] Blake: [00:07:25] yeah, that's a really good question. And I hesitate, I hesitate to give away our secrets here, Ted, but I reluctantly will because, you know, you're. trusted associates, trusted clients and, and friend of the show and of the people, Michael Hyatt and company, you know, our secret was just telling people that it was the case.

[00:07:54] So that was our big secret. We actually became the most productive podcast on the internet, because our genus copywriter said, so. And it's incredible. The power that that has had, you know, we name it and claim it. You might say if you've ever heard that phrase, that's what we had.

[00:08:13] Ted: [00:08:13] Yeah. In fact, that's kind of, one of the things a friend of mine has said, you know, if anything you want to ever be as an expert, all you have to say is I'm an expert,

[00:08:20] Blake: [00:08:20] you're an expert.

[00:08:23] Ted: [00:08:23] Right. That was wonderful. I got another question too. And what is it up with you guys in Chicago? Sports? I mean, you put on your bio that you're a big Chicago bears fan. Chad's a huge cubby stran. What's the, what's the big draw there. And national was Chicago sport.

[00:08:39] Blake: [00:08:39] Yeah, I think we just, at some level just don't like ourselves.

[00:08:45] And so we'd like to endure pain. I think that's the it's, you know, it's a little masochistic, just getting your hopes up every year and then losing, you know, the cubbies, turned around four years ago. And I remember thinking that 2016 was a while a year and now I've learned that it, it really was. It was nothing compared to this year, but yeah.

[00:09:05] Yeah. I don't know what it is. We both, you grew up from there, you know, in Nashville where I live, there's a lot of Chicago transplants and I think it's because they stopped off here one time on their way for their, you know, their week vacation in Florida. And they were like, you know, this is a pretty cool town.

[00:09:26] Plus winter is less than eight months long. Like it is in Chicago. So. Maybe we should move here. No state tax helps as well. And so you end up with a lot of Chicago fans, who are loud, but sad and, and that's, you know, if I could characterize myself and Chad, I think you're referencing it in a couple of words, it'd be loud and a little bit sad on the inside,

[00:09:50] Ted: [00:09:50] what a great tag for yourself.

[00:09:53]so to get a little bit more insight on you and how you fit in. Kind of go through your origin story. How did you end up where you are, with, I mean, from your humble beginnings to where you are now with Michael Hyatt and company?

[00:10:07] Blake: [00:10:07] Mm, well, it was a winding trail for sure, but I think maybe I would start in terms of how I got in connection with Michael Hyatt and company.

[00:10:20] I remember I was. Working for a software company. And it was that even getting, there was kind of a windy trail for me, but had been working with a couple of different agencies doing marketing and then myself and, my boss, we kind of got out of our agency and just joined this software company to help it just grow as fast as we could grow it.

[00:10:47] And that was really exciting, really small team. I think we were employees nine and 10 or 10 or 11, something like that, but really fast growth, very exciting, but it was exhausting. I was overwhelmed on a daily basis and it slowly started to affect every area of my life from my relationships to my health.

[00:11:13] I would get sick pretty often because I wouldn't sleep very well. I would go to bed feeling stressed. And you may know this, but stress is just this underrated cause of a million problems in life. health wise, and I would wake up at two or three in the morning. I don't know if this has ever happened to you, Ted, when you wake up and your brain is decided that that is the best time to try to solve these problems that you couldn't figure out during your work day.

[00:11:43] And you're like, I literally can't do anything about that. Now. Just go to sleep brain. But your brain wants to keep you up. And so that would happen essentially every night it was years. I didn't sleep through the night, wake up tired, do it all over again. And I remember even my wife pulling me aside once and just saying, Hey, I feel kind of alone.

[00:12:06] Like you're, you're home, you're here, but you're not really here mentally. You're you're kind of somewhere else. And that. You know, that's hard to hear. so I was in that place, I felt like I was a really productive person cause I was doing a lot of things. I was managing a lot of things. I had some systems and a bunch of digital tools and I read blogs like Michael Hyatt and other things to always try to get new tools or better ways of doing stuff.

[00:12:35] But I was still stressed, still feeling like I was behind every day. Not sure if I was really moving the needle and a friend of mine, his name's Eric. Recommended this planner, this physical planner called the full focus planner. He said, I started using Michael Hyatt's new planner. You should really check it out.

[00:12:55] And I said, you know, I've got an iPhone, right? I don't file. Would I need a paper planner? And he said, trust me, just give it a shot for a couple of weeks. See what happens. So I ordered one, give it a shot. And one morning I wake up. And I realized that it's actually morning. I realized it's actually morning time.

[00:13:18] And I slept through the night. It was the first time in years I slept through the night and I thought, wow, that's pretty cool. And I started using the system, started writing things down, physically with a pen and paper. And my brain seemed to like that. I would, I was less overwhelmed. I ended up accomplishing.

[00:13:39] More things or maybe I wasn't accomplishing more things. It just felt like I was winning. Right. You know, I kind of redefined what the wind was, what was most important started actually hitting some goals. And that eventually led me to ultimately leaving that company and starting my own consulting business.

[00:13:59] And it was, while I was doing that consulting business, I was just a fateful, full focus planner user. I was in a coffee shop and a guy came up to me. He says, Hey. What do you think that planner and I just, I in beaming dad and I share with him all of this that I just shared with you, how it had helped me, how my, my own consultancy that month had had grown.

[00:14:22] And over the course of that year had just grown, you know, month after month, it was improving, thanks to the system. And he said, wow, that's really cool. You know, I'm the chief marketing officer at Michael Hyatt and company. And I would love to get that on video. Can you shoot a video testimonial for us?

[00:14:42] And so that was, that was Jabie referenced earlier. And we became friends. He eventually invited me to speak on a panel at one of Michael's conferences, just to share about our experiences and the full focus system was there with a handful of other leaders. And that was the first time I met Michael and got to see him backstage, Ted.

[00:15:07] And for those listening, maybe you've heard of Michael Hyatt, or maybe you have your own quote unquote guru or person you follow online and maybe you've wondered what's that person actually like what's that person like behind the scenes? I have been fortunate to rub shoulders with a lot of different leaders and personalities.

[00:15:28] And it's not always the same. I can tell you that it's not always, what you see is what you get. So I was interested to meet Michael and I can't tell you Ted how bold over impressed I was with him as a person and as a leader, the event I was. Doing with them was the first time it was the first of its kind.

[00:15:53] They had conceived, planned and executed that event in less than three months, I think. And Michael was cool as a cucumber. All of his team was functioning diligently and he was totally calm. I didn't see one employee passing by backstage where he didn't pay them a specific, direct, thoughtful. Compliment or encouragement about what they were doing.

[00:16:20] I ended up getting lunch that day with these five women. One was the COO of Michael Hyatt and company, Megan, but the others were his other daughters. And, you know, they had come not because they had to be there, but because they love dad loved being around and supporting his events. And I saw him. Go off to the side.

[00:16:45] I was kind of eavesdropping. Maybe it was a little creepy, but he went over to his wife, Gail. They've been married over 40 years and I saw him casually, you know, ask her on a date saying, guess what? I cleared the calendar tonight. There's nothing going on. I'm going to take you wherever you want to go.

[00:17:02] What's going on a date. And I thought to myself, this guy has figured it out. Yeah. You know, I'm, I've been productive, but. If I ever can learn how to build a business where the team is, these high functioning, enthusiastic individuals, a lot of Michael high-income. And I don't know if you know the study of people that used to own their own business.

[00:17:29] Yeah. That's Chad, myself, Neil Deidre. I mean a lot of folks and. How do you attract people like that? How do you motivate people like that? And yet scale the business, do what you love to do. And meanwhile, you have plenty of margin to sustain romance in a marriage for decades in. You can still be friends with your adult children.

[00:18:01] I thought to myself, man, I. I want to be around that if I ever get the chance to be around that I'm in. So anyway, fast forward, I don't know how many months, but I was getting breakfast with Chad and we were talking about this full focus planner and we were just excited about it. And I thought, you know, what would be really fun?

[00:18:18] Have you guys ever thought about taking this to teams, making this a corporate tool? He said we have, we just don't have anyone who can speak, who could teach, who could deliver this conceive of this and sell this. And even though I told them, I didn't think I'd ever want to work with another company again, after going off on my own, I was like, man, that sounds exciting.

[00:18:39] And I I'm all in on the mission here. So that's how it began. So that's a long story long, but, that's, that's how I got connected here.

[00:18:49] Ted: [00:18:49] Yeah, this, I mean, that may have been the length of one of your entire episodes. That's pretty good. Blake. I'm glad you,

[00:18:53] Blake: [00:18:53] I think we're all set, so thanks for having me on.

[00:18:56] Ted: [00:18:56] Yeah. Perfect. That's great. you know, it's that, and I'll tell you my first true, like personal experience with. Michael. This is Andy ladies and gentlemen. This is not going to become a worship Michael moment, but I just, I think this is important to say this because just like Blake said, he truly is exactly what you get.

[00:19:12] And he's personally involved with almost every single person. He comes in contact with. my sister lives like. on the 700 block of West main in Franklin. And so on Sunday before the conference, we had a Monday start. I had come in to town on Saturday, and spent the night, had some friends, had dinner with some friends that live over in Brentwood.

[00:19:35] And then, on Sunday I was going to go hang out with my sister that just happened. So happened to be the same weekend as Pilgrim Fest. And you live in. Franklin and Pilgrim presses happening places it's kind of busy. It's it's like having Lollapalooza show up in Tifton, Georgia, my little dinky hometown.

[00:19:54] So it's a huge, huge mess music fast. And my sister and brother-in-law have gotten to know quite a few people in the music industry, just by proximity. They just sort of have they fallen into their laps and they were invited to go to. Pilgrim festival. I wasn't going to get to hang out with her as long as I wanted to, but I took what I could get.

[00:20:13] And I'm sitting on her front porch at about 11 o'clock we're chatting. She's going to meet Eddie back at the Pilgrim Fest cause he's already out there. And so I said, okay, so I'm going to walk around town. I go to eat lunch at this place called the mercantile, I believe is what it's called and had lunch.

[00:20:27] And then I'm walking around looking for something sweet to eat. And I've looked at this one place that wasn't good with another place. Didn't really like that. And I walked into this ice cream shop. And, I'm standing at the counter actually looking at their sweets, the chocolate stuff. And I said, and then maybe also some ice cream.

[00:20:42] So I walked down to the end of the ice cream and there's this gentleman and a lady and this younger child there. And all of a sudden the man speaks and I go, Oh my gosh, Michael, I'm Ted macro. I'm going to be in your conference tomorrow. And he turns around and says, wow, You know, I said, I just recognize your voice and, realized it was you.

[00:21:00] And, I'm just, I can't tell you how excited I am. He says, I am really excited about his. He was asking me what I do, all this kind of stuff. Next thing I know. Gail's pepper me with all sorts of questions too. I mean, it's, it literally is. They were truly involved in the next day, you know, after this little brief encounter, in front of the entire crowd, he said, Oh, by the way, I ran into, one of our BAC people yesterday, Ted macro right here.

[00:21:23] Shakti. You remember who he was, you know, so he truly does get involved. And that's, I think a really good lesson that you said there Blake was becoming involved with people, regardless of what standard status of life they have, especially with your team. that's the thing that I fall short on more than anything else I can think of is not.

[00:21:42] Just giving them a common courtesy of hello. Sometimes, you know, you just get so busy, you get tied up into whatever your life is and you don't take that moment just to say, I see you there. I appreciate what you're doing. Thank you. If God had not dropped you in my lap, I don't know what I would have, you know, without it.

[00:22:00] And I think that's the kind of thing that Michael does extremely well. And, thank you for calling that out because that was you basically doing the exact same thing.

[00:22:11]

[00:22:11] one of the biggest lessons that I think we all get through when we're going through a business accelerator or any of these kinds of programs, and this isn't, again, a business accelerator advertisement either.

[00:22:21] I really think your coaching is important regardless of who you get it from. But I think almost every coaching program has the same kind of story of if it's worth doing right. I should. Do it myself. Okay. And I think that's the thing that Michael has learned how to do really well is he has learned that it's not as important that I do at all.

[00:22:43] As a matter of fact, even if it doesn't get perfectly well done, 80% done by somebody else is better than a hundred percent done by me. And, I think that's where a lot of us tend to fall in to a challenge is that we're so busy doing so many things. And identifying what those so many things are that it just becomes a challenge.

[00:23:04] So how does somebody get out of that trap?

[00:23:09] Blake: [00:23:09] Yeah, I think you have to come to terms with what you really want. That's probably the first thing before we get into any tool or strategy or tactic, it's important to recognize what you want. Right. I mean, for you, dad, I'm curious. When you joined business accelerator, what was the primary motivation?

[00:23:35] Ted: [00:23:35] It was kind of twofold. and Oh, by the way, everybody, just to let you all know, every time I do one of these podcasts, it's basically like $10,000 of free consulting that I get. So this is all about me right now. This is not really about the audience, but. it was really about, two things. First of all, finding some margin in my life.

[00:23:52] Very similar to what you talked about. My wife, is a, is an educator. She also was a coach, for swim and you know, there in the winter, her time is. Really tight too. We're both getting home at about six o'clock if I'm lucky and that's where the problem became, it was if I'm lucky I'm coming home at six o'clock.

[00:24:11] A lot of times it was more like seven, sometimes seven 30, you know, and I get that, you know, same situation you had, you know, where she's kind of feeling like she's alone in this kind of thing. And it really became a lot more like that when my children left and went to college. Because now we're empty nesters and, you know, that's become a challenge.

[00:24:29] The second part was I had deemed 2019 as being my year of growth. And I went through a vetting process of looking at what kind of, which one of these programs was going to fit best into what I needed out of it. And the business accelerator program worked out to be the best thing for me. not just because of what they delivered.

[00:24:48]I probably could have gotten this same. I wouldn't say exactly the same. Process, but I would have gotten just as much enrichment if I'd have gone with say Dave Ramsey, entre leadership or something like that. But what I got out of it was the timing. So I know that was part of God had put that in the right place for me to be there at the right time.

[00:25:09]but also just the, the conversation that I have with Chad and realizing how it did fit really in what I needed. And then there was this other little trinket that had nothing to do with it at all. But Becca Turner Chad's, executive assistant. Happened to grow up two blocks away from the house that we were living in before we moved in the house we're in now, here in Tifton.

[00:25:29] So I had no idea actually, that was even a connection until I got an email back from Becca saying, Oh my gosh, I can't believe that. You know, I got a, I saw an email from Tifton, Georgia. So that kind of sealed the deal, I guess. But yeah, but Jamie, she's a great

[00:25:43] Blake: [00:25:43] kid. Yeah. I think that you hit on something, which is.

[00:25:50] You recognize you needed more margin, but you were also desiring growth. And I think a lot of business owners or optometrists people with a practice, they want to see the revenue go up, right. Or they want to see the amount of people they can serve increase. They want to see growth. That's a healthy, natural thing to want, but there.

[00:26:16] Building in such a way where they've really reached their capacity and they also want more capacity, maybe it's for their relationships, like in your case. And in my case, maybe it's for their own health and wellbeing, or maybe it's because man, I'm working so hard. I want to enjoy the fruits of my labor.

[00:26:32] I want to be able to unplug and for things to not fall apart. I mean, I talk to people every day that. They haven't. I asked him when they took their last vacation and they say, Oh, well, you know, we took a week in July and I said, Oh, awesome. So what was it like to not have your laptop or your phone around?

[00:26:50] And they say, Oh, I haven't done that in 10 years. Right. And I think of one of our clients is her name's Amy. And she came to us and it was, she was just exhausted. I mean, she is someone who like, she's not an optometrist, but she is in. kind of healthcare business as a counselor and really was running on fumes because she makes money when she's in the chair.

[00:27:19] And so there's only so many hours in the day. Right. But then there's all the other things that go along with running the business. So she didn't really have a business as much as she had a really demanding job. And she was experiencing a lot of negative effects with. With all the things we mentioned, health-wise, you know, having to take certain medications and that sort of stuff.

[00:27:42] These are things that she's shared openly before. So I'm not disclosing anything. She wouldn't tell you herself, but it was affecting her life in a lot of different ways. She's like I'm working so hard. I love helping people, but I'm just exhausted and run down. How do I. Have the impact that I feel called to have, it's almost like a, do I, am I cursed for having this vision for something big?

[00:28:03] When I clearly don't have the capacity before, and it's a really painful place to be in and fast forward. A couple of years, she has increased her revenue 300% and is working rather than hours and hours and hours. He's actually only going into her office three days a week now. And she has enough free time.

[00:28:24] She's actually become one of our one-on-one coaches. Who's just helping people get transformation that she's had, you know, she's off. So many of those medications that helped her sleep. And because those problems went away because she actually had the margin and the stress relief that she had been really needing.

[00:28:41] So if you can tap into why, you know what you want and why you want it, I think that's the starting place, Ted, because that gives you. The clarity to know. Okay. So then what do I need if I, if I'm looking for margin and I'm looking for growth at the same time, how can I change the rules of the game so that it's not an either or it's both.

[00:29:04] And it's, how can I do that together? So those are the tools that we are. I shouldn't say it this way. We provide tools to help people do that. And you know, to your question, there's one in particular that I was excited to talk to your. Your audience about, because I think it's such a helpful lens through which to look at this concept of how do I achieve more, but gain freedom simultaneously.

[00:29:33] Ted: [00:29:33] Right. And, you know, part of the thing that, that happens, it doesn't happen by accident. You've got to be very deliberate in how this is doing and intentional with it. I think one of the traps we also fall into is looking at our strengths and weaknesses. And the first thing we think is, Oh, if I'm going to get better, I've got to make my weaknesses better.

[00:29:53] Hmm. When actually what we tend to find that really works well is to spend more time working in our strengths area and finding someone. To fulfill those weaknesses that we have. Instead of working on those weaknesses. And I'm not saying we don't want to, you know, ignore our weakness. We don't want to do that.

[00:30:11] But when I am saying is, you know, if I do this particular, I mean, I'm pretty good at organizational stuff. Not that you could look at my desk and tell that, but as far as putting processes and systems together, I'm really good at that. I'm good at doing those kinds of things, but if I'm constantly in an, in a dark room with one other individual asking them, which is better, one and two, it's always two by the way, just a hint there.

[00:30:35]but if I'm asking that question constantly and doing those kinds of things and talking about their eye diseases, when am I going to have time? To help make my business better. So I've got to find a way to do those kinds of things. And also a lot of the stuff that I don't really have time to do, like monitoring my calendar.

[00:30:54] I know it sounds crazy, but my calendar is pretty full or looking at my email. I mean, I'm sure everybody has a problem for their email. So, The development of, of executive assistants have helped out a lot of that. And off-boarding that one, but the challenge that I have, and this is kind of the tool I think you were leaning in toward is this thing you guys have called the freedom compass.

[00:31:14] And I think that's where making sure that those strengths and weaknesses line up the best and the challenge that I have is. Trying to figure out exactly what I should be putting in my what's called the desire zone, the things that only I can do and taking the other pieces and putting those in the other pieces of the pie, in that freedom compass to make it where my life is so much easier.

[00:31:37] And it's, I mean, I've had this tool in my hand for nine months and I'm still struggling with it a little bit, to be honest, that's, that's kind of a challenge for me.

[00:31:46] Blake: [00:31:46] Okay, well, let's get into that then, but first maybe for your audience, let's provide some context. So you mentioned, you know, this idea of, Hey, I could get something a hundred percent done, but maybe if someone else can get 80% done, that's better.

[00:32:00] And I think the concept that you're really talking about is just leverage, how do we find leverage points? Because. If we're going to grow our practice, if we're going to grow our business, if we're going to achieve more at work, but do so with less time or do so with less activity so that we have more margin, ultimately, it's not about how do we get more things done.

[00:32:26] It has to be a very selective process of how can I do the right things. That will create the most leverage. So if I were to do those things, everything else becomes easier. Everything else becomes cheaper, everything else becomes faster or maybe outright unnecessary. So you, your audience is probably heard of the 80 20 rule.

[00:32:49] You know, that principle, the Pareto principle maybe you've heard of, or it's just, you know, Pareto is this economist. Who's just identified that Hey, 20% of the effort drives 80% of the results, basically anywhere you look. It's not, you know, even in your line of work, 20% of, you know, the, probably the procedures that you do probably drive 80% of the income that you make for instance, or 20% of your activities are driving 80% of.

[00:33:21] What moves things

[00:33:21] Ted: [00:33:21] forward in 20% are doing 80% of the work. It seems like a lot of times too.

[00:33:27] Blake: [00:33:27] Yeah. Yeah. So this, this principle, the 80 20 is, is that hand everywhere. The question that you've got to answer is what is the 20% for me? What is my 20% that will drive 80% of the results. And so. To me. I, I think of this in two ways to, to identify that one is it's got to be things that are producing results, right?

[00:33:58] It has to be things that are producing revenue. So what are the things that you're doing that are really producing for your business, for your practice for most people like it? And I don't care if you're listening to this, you own a practice, or if you are an employee. I'm an employee I'm, I'm paid to do certain things.

[00:34:20] And the reason I'm paid, what I'm paid is because I'm good at doing those things. So what are you being paid for is a way to think about that or what are those things that I think you've raised it this way that only I can do meaning there's a reason I'm getting paid by and pay it's because I can produce these things.

[00:34:37] So what are the things that drive results is the first question we would use a term called proficiency for this, because it's, those are typically the things that you're really good at. And when you do them, revenue goes up. Am I explaining this well so far? It's ad. That makes sense. All right. So this, the second component is if you want to create momentum, create leverage, you better be doing tasks that you can do with speed and with consistency, with speed and with consistency, right?

[00:35:07] Because there were some things you could do that maybe produce revenue, but gosh, it takes forever. It's draining. And it's inconsistent, like your ability to deliver on that. And one of the biggest factors for speed and consistency is actually enjoyment or the word we would use is passion. So have you noticed, you tend to do things more consistently that you actually enjoy doing.

[00:35:35] Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I mean, it's, it's hard to stay consistent at the stuff we hate doing. It's easy to stay consistent. I mean, we'll stay consistent at things that we shouldn't even be doing just because we like it so much. So when the hours can fly in, by when you're in the zone, that's, you can get those things done fast.

[00:35:55] You can do those things reliably without burnout. So what we want is to figure out them. If you're driving in a car, I don't recommend this, but if you are listening passively and you can make a quick drawing, what we have designed is simply a two by two, it's a very simple diagram of a circle with an X in the middle and those X, you know, and that axis it's passionate and proficiency.

[00:36:25] That's what we're really measuring here. So, what we need to find is where do those results producing activities intersect with the passion? Because if we can find those activities that really produce results, we're really good at doing them. And also we could do this things with speed and consistency, you know, those things because we're passionate about those things.

[00:36:49] Wouldn't it be smart to identify those and spend as much time there as possible. That's the premise of the freedom compass. And that's, you know, I mentioned Amy earlier, that was one of the biggest factors for her is coming to terms with, well, what is in my desire zone and how can I spend more time there?

[00:37:07] We would recommend, if you're leading the business 80% or more of your time should be spent in your desire zone.

[00:37:16] Ted: [00:37:16] Right. You know, and because. Again, that's the part where we're going to give the most result back to that business. Otherwise you're spinning your wheels doing a lot of things you don't need to be doing.

[00:37:28]you know, now a good example. you know, it gets kind of busy in our office from time to time, you know, and I'm walking through the office and. The phones are ringing and it's gotten to the fourth ring and no one's picked it up. Well, it's okay for me to reach over and grab the phone and just pitch in a little bit there, you know, to say, thank you for calling vision sources is Ted

[00:37:48] How can I help you? And, you know, just taking that moment to deal with that, but that's not something I should be doing all day long, because if I did that all day long, what I really do to generate. The most amount of profit from our practice is sitting in the room and having that conversation with my guests and saying to them, well, this is your eye problem, and this is what needs to be fixed.

[00:38:11] And here's my solution for you, because if I'm not offering them solutions to their problems, then how am I going to possibly generate any revenue to take care of the people I've got to take care of, including me and my family.

[00:38:25] Blake: [00:38:25] Exactly. And I would argue Ted. If that happens more than once, that's a, that's a problem, right?

[00:38:34] Or I should maybe another way to say it. I think a problem is, is opportunities. Problems are a good thing to have if you're a growing business. Cause if you don't have any problems, Just because you're not growing. So in that instance of like, Oh, I'm picking up the phone, you know, I'm helping out. I think sometimes leaders can have that attitude of like, Oh, I'm, I'm willing to do anything.

[00:38:55] You know? I'll sweep the floors if I have to. And if that makes you sleep better at night, then more power to you, but it won't help you create more margin in your life. And it won't really help you serve more people or generate more value. And if you're finding yourself like Ted, you know, Oh, I. I had to pick up the phone today, act to pick up the phone tomorrow.

[00:39:17] That's an opportunity. Right? Cause it's an opportunity to go. Oh, okay. there's a system error here, you know, like that message should be going across here. What, what is missing that is making this happen? yeah, so Ted let's get real. What, you know, you can use yourself as an example or maybe if you've had conversations, but you mentioned earlier, I'm just curious, you know, this has kind of been a hard thing for me to implement.

[00:39:39] I'd love for you to share more about that, because I think that the more actual we can make this, it's probably the more valuable for people listening. I think the

[00:39:46] Ted: [00:39:46] part of it is probably is challenging for me is identifying exactly what those things are. Okay. And there's the, the other challenge that happens too is, and perhaps you've had clients that have dealt with before their stuff that they truly just generate a lot of production for their company, but yet it's getting to be.

[00:40:09] The kind of thing that every time they touch it, it burns their skin. you know, it it's, it's not quite in the drudgery part of the, of the compass yet, but it's getting close, you know, it's, it's falling to the bottom of that desire zone area. And what you have to find is someone to. Fill that for you, going back to what you talked about earlier, it, I think there's another part it's, it's okay to be willing to answer the phone.

[00:40:35] It's not okay to do it all day long. I think that's our team want to know that we're, we're not above doing that, but they also realize that if we're not spending our time in that part, this. Really driving the revenue, they're going to suffer too. those that are truly aware of this kind of thing. So, for me, it has been truly identifying what those pieces are.

[00:41:01]and maybe it's because I'm in this transitional stage with my business right now, I'm trying to spend significantly more time working on my business. Than I am in my business right now. And because I know that the more I spend in that, on the business versus in the business will actually end up driving even more revenue than what I have by just doing eye examinations.

[00:41:23]you know, if, if I can teach someone the process of what I'm doing in my examiner, in my exam room, then I can spend more time managing or, or actually leading that group. Into ways that they can become more profitable, they'll have better ideas that they'll bring into it too. So, I mean, I'm probably a lot closer than I think I am, but I feel like I'm really far off, you know, from,

[00:41:48] Blake: [00:41:48] well, you said something that's interesting, which is, maybe struggling to identify what's in my desire zone.

[00:41:53] So let's start there. For those listening, the desire zone, as we said, is that intersection of passion and proficiency stuff that you love to do gives you energy gives you a lifetime flies by man. I can do this every day. I can't believe they pay me to do this. And proficiency is the, the, the areas that drive the business forward that you're really, you're highly skilled at doing those things.

[00:42:18] There are others zone's naturally. If he drew that accent in the middle of the circle there, there's obviously these three other. Zones the opposite. I'll cover these briefly for your listeners, Ted. I know you know them, but to identify what's in your desire zone, sometimes it's helpful to understand what's not in your desire zone.

[00:42:36] So if you want to do this at home, The, what you start with is just a list of tasks. Look back at your calendar at the meetings, you had look at your task managers at the things that you did, your appointment calendar. If you're an optometrist, what, what were you doing in this appointment? So on and so forth and identify categories around those tasks.

[00:42:55] And then, you know, look at this X in the circle between passionate proficiency and decide, okay, am I passionate about this? Am I proficient at this? The answer is yes to both. It's in your desire zone. If you're passionate, but you really have no proficiency. Like, Ooh, I love updating my website because I think it's cool to have a cool website for my business, but you never get any clients through your website and it takes you forever because you're not a web designer.

[00:43:24] You may be passionate, but that's called a distraction. We call that the distraction zone. maybe you have proficiency, but no passion. And I think you were alluding to that, to where I'm doing something that, yeah, this is gonna help us make money, but boy, I'd rather be doing something else that is a disinterest in area of disinterest.

[00:43:43] We call that the disinterest zone. And then if the answer is no, I don't have passion and I'm not proficient at this. That's a drudgery zone thing. That is a, those tasks you're doing. We were just like, How is this my life? I can't wait for this to be over type things. I mean, you mentioned managing your calendar.

[00:44:01] I mean, maybe that's it for some people or email. but there's the, there are those tasks in there. So going back to your question, Ted, what do you think is in your desires and what do you feel like where, where do you feel like is the point of tension or for the struggle to identify that?

[00:44:20] Ted: [00:44:20] I guess it's just.

[00:44:23] Probably fear more than anything else, you know, because I do know that I can drive a lot of revenue for our practice sitting in the exam room. I also know I can teach someone to do that. The amount of time that I spend in my exam room. I don't have time to develop my teams. And that's really where I feel like the biggest return on my investment will be in the long run is developing my team, spending time with leaders in that team that they can also turn intern, teach others to do these kinds of things.

[00:44:58]it's, it's taken me a long time to get to, to trust people that they can do. So many more things, probably a lot better than I can because I'd always been taught. You know, that, again, that same thing I said at the beginning of his work, the on right is worth doing myself. And our profession has come from a place where we literally did everything.

[00:45:20] There was someone that sat at the front desk and said, hello, when people came through the door. And that was the only thing that they did. Whereas that eye doctor did. All of it too. Now we have slowly added more and more things to other people to make us more productive so we can spend more time doing the things.

[00:45:37] But when it comes down to it, a lot of us got into our profession because optometry is kind of a technician type kind of job. We're good technicians. The problem was some of us started realizing. We're we're a good technician, but we're also really good at strategy. And we're also really good at team-building and, and giving people worth.

[00:45:57] And I think that's where my passion truly is, is spending more time coaching my team to become better. And yet I've got to do that. I've got to carve out that time, which means there's one day that I'm not going to be doing guest care or maybe it's too. Or maybe it's four or maybe it's none of them. And now suddenly, okay.

[00:46:21] You know, filling up those holes starts to become a challenge, especially in a market like it is right now. or in a place that I live in Tifton, Georgia is not exactly the center of the universe. It's. Well, it is to me, but you know, it's a great place to live and it's wonderful, but it's hard to try people a lot of times to come to small towns and to spend three years on another doctor, which I, there's a lot of my audience right now that are nodding their head because they're going through this exact same thing is a struggle.

[00:46:52] And so there's that pain point of trying to fill that hole. And at the same time grow this thing that you truly want to do. So I decided. Many years ago, once I had, I think my third associate to leave, I was never going to stop looking for associates. I was going to continue to keep looking for them regardless of what all was happening.

[00:47:14] And right now I've got a fantastic associate that will become a partner of mine, hopefully by June. And, I've got a son in optometry school, but I could probably could put somebody else to work. In that place, because who knows if my son's going to come home, who knows if you know, somebody else is going to come along and I can't not have those opportunities, but at the same time, I really want to get into coaching my team.

[00:47:39] I really want to develop the processes and the programs that we're doing in our practices that are going to make us better. And that's one of the reasons also why. This business accelerator program worked out so well, because there are so many people, as you know, that are in this exact same situation that I'm in.

[00:47:57] That's why this is attractive to us all. so I don't know if I answered your question at all or not, but that was

[00:48:02] Blake: [00:48:02] a good one. Well, I think we had a breakthrough because I don't think you're struggling to figure out what's in your desire zone. I think you're struggling to own it because you're afraid you can't do it.

[00:48:15] Yeah,

[00:48:15] Ted: [00:48:15] that's probably right.

[00:48:18] Blake: [00:48:18] I mean, is it, I mean, it sounds like, you know, what's in your desire zone. It sounds like, you know, well, if I'm talking about, what's going to make me money this week, it's sitting in the chair. If I'm talking about what's going to three X my business in terms of revenue, it's going to be development, right.

[00:48:37] Ted: [00:48:37] And, you know, that's where we're digging into another thing that our audience learned about previously called the limiting belief, which is, you know, the thing that I think I can't do, is limiting me from getting the not true potential because I'm standing in my way or I'm letting someone else stand in my way of something that is possible.