CEO Moments - Trailblazing Versus the Path Most Traveled
Okay, let's do this. So yeah, good morning. Welcome to today's Micro-Moments, where I'm actually homeless, as far as offices go. I feel a little weird about it, but that's okay. I might need a little few tips from you guys, because most of you are kind of running your home based businesses and stuff, and don't have the office to walk into, so I'm going to look for your domination tips over the next couple months.
Fair enough? So yeah, host away. Send me your tips, but I'm hoping the absence is going to grow fonder, which I'm sure it will, and likely for all of you.
One little quick thing. Thank you so much for the amazing comments on my little mini-vlog that I posted randomly on Friday, that was pretty rad. It was pretty humbling to get all your messages, and they're still coming in, so thank you. I treasure your Monday morning, so let's dig right into this.
Today's topic I've labeled as Trailblazing versus Path Most Traveled. Knowing us and knowing what we believe in here at Redline, I can only assume that this topic might feel a little obvious for you. You're likely thinking, "I know where Darren's going to go with this one," but I want you to just hang on for a moment. I might just surprise you at the end.
Let me start with a little story, as I always do. Today I've actually got two little stories. The first one, we're going to call it The Google Map, all right? So if we ever reference that, it's called The Google Map. The other day, I find myself running a little bit behind, out there with clients and appointments. I'm sure you guys can relate. Bouncing from different parts of the city, as we all do as we navigate clients in different areas.
It can be hard to plan your spots, right? How long is a client going to spend in that house? How long it's going to take me to travel based on the traffic that's hanging on out there right now. So yeah, it gets a little bit tricky. For me, I'm the type that I'd rather be 10 to 15 minutes early than right on time. That's just what I do. I get little anxiety if I'm going to be late, or even on time. I feel like I don't have time to walk from my car and get into the wherever I'm going.
On this day, I was trying to get to a buyer's final set of showings. I know the city well, like you all do, but what I do every time I'm about to go to the next direction, I always plug it into Google Maps, even though I know which way I'm going, because I want to get a sense for how long I have. Am I going to be there on time or not?
This time, I was like, "Oh shit, this is going to get close." I saw where Google was telling me how to go and where to go. I didn't think it was the fastest way. Have you guys ever thought about that? You're like, "Yeah, no, Google's wrong." Right? Yeah, so with my infinite wisdom, I made a quick decision, decided to chart my own path, and hammer down this journey freestyle, right? Realtor freestyle.
Well, it turns out I ended up five to seven minutes late than I would have if I just would have followed Google, who had the traffic figured out. They knew what was going on, but I didn't, so I was late. For someone for me being late and too proud to listen to Google, it was a little bit maddening, and my anxiety level was high the whole time, because you know you're like, "Shit, I took the wrong path, and my clock is just growing, and growing, and growing, and I'm getting further away from my destination." So yeah, that wasn't cool.
Then you know in those situations, you also have every traffic light and every slow driver in town in front of you, right? So you get even more frustrated. It was one of those times. That's story number one, the Google Map, okay?
Story number two, we'll call it The Lego. Just the other weekend I was home with the kids. Bentley, my little four year old junior engineer wanted to build out his Lego that he had for Christmas. I love it when he asks, because I get to just sit back and watch his little mind work. He's got so much patience ... I should learn from that ... and he's definitely an engineer in the making.
As often happens when Bentley gets the idea to go and independently do something, my oldest son, [Ryker 00:04:23], takes a liking to that. He did that as well, and he came in. He was a little jealous, so he wanted to settle down and join in the fun. Bentley being four, and he's usually doing Lego above his age level, he doesn't need a lot of help from me.
I'm that kind of there as his sounding board, and I'm the guy that needs to squish those pieces together a little tighter so they don't fall apart, but he rips out the instruction manual, he goes through it, he gets the numbered bags of pieces, and he goes through them one by one properly. Monotonously, he goes step, by step, by step and he's like, "Daddy, can you turn the page now?"
Ryker on the other hand, takes a little different approach during this day. He says, "Well, this is it for five plus. I got this." He figured he could look at the picture, freewheel it, and tackle it freestyle. 10 year old freestyle. So off he went.
Bentley slow, and steady, and methodical, Ryker like a bat out of hell putting his chosen piece together. As you're probably expecting, the end result had Bentley finishing yet another high quality little creation with little to no difficulty, and Ryker with also a finished product, but one that was not intended.
What do both of these little stories have in common? Number one, as the title of today's topic suggests, they both had the opportunity to trailblaze, and both had the opportunity to take the path more frequently traveled. Both had someone taking the trailblazer option, and both had the trailblazer fall short of their intended outcome.
Now with the plot set, now that you guys got a little warmed up, let me switch gears and relate this over to our business world just a little bit. For me, for us all, and our business model at Redline, I think I consider myself a trailblazer, a change-maker, somebody not scared to get out there and make my own way.
This is what this company's been built off of, and for all of you, this is something that I know you guys really value in us, and a big reason why you guys are all here, because you're all change-makers, and you're all [inaudible 00:06:38] and want to be a part of that.
These two little stories are here to remind us something as we push, and push, and push the status quo, I think. They're here to remind us that let's ensure when we're trailblazing, when we're lighting fire to the traditional way of thinking, and we're charging down this path less traveled that we're all on together, that we always need a little bit of a check-in. We need to play devil's advocate just a moment.
Take a moment to decide if we're simply trailblazing for the sake of trailblazing, or is this a truly calculated move, whatever it is you're doing? Let's use this little series of stories to remind ourselves there's another side to the coin, and that it's okay to explore it once in a while too.
A couple little examples, as I think we could all relate, would be I've got one here under business planning. Sometimes as we business plan and look for new ways to grow our business, I think sometimes we can put pressure on ourselves that this new idea needs to be so damn revolutionary. That can get in the way of something very simple and proven, and more importantly, probably right in front of our noses.
Number two, videos. We're all doing videos. We just talked about videos and sticks and stuff, how to hold them. Sometimes as we consider what we should say on video or what we should do, we look around for inspiration. We look at YouTube, we look at top realtors, we look at other things. We see examples about what's going on. We get this feeling that we need to make something super epic and big that hasn't been done before.
Instead of again, the same as in the business planning example, instead of just getting out there and just doing something, and doing the next one, and not needing to make it a Hollywood blockbuster, or a masterpiece for Masterpiece Theater, sometimes it can be simple. Sometimes it can be done before by somebody else, and you just need to put your little spin on it, your little personal touch.
Those are two little examples I thought of just last night that felt like would relate to most of us, along with this idea of the Micro-Moment today. For today, I want to say my little thing I wanted to leave you with is this; how often are there things that you just aren't doing or taking action on right now, because you're looking for that trailblaze idea? That path never or less traveled?
When would it really serve you well to just get behind an idea that's been proven, and you can start implementing right here today? Implement today knowing there's a proven success strategy, and that the newness or the trailblaze can come later once you get into the groove and accomplish a few little wins along the way.
I bet if we think about it, there's a ton of things that we would come up with if we thought about that. As I'm leaving, the next time you're in the situation where you find yourself stuck, think to yourself, "Am I trying to recreate the wheel? Am I trying to just trailblaze, or can I just start acting?"
Because trust me guys, you being at this company will be a catalyst for many trailblazers and trailblazing paths as we go. Just know it doesn't have to be the only way, and the more basic option still exists as in the Lego build and the Google Map story suggests. These can often be the right path to choose at the moment. Go make your decisions guys.