Over Easy

One of my clients recently said to me: “You seem to do things the easy way.” At first I wasn’t sure that comment was intended as a compliment, then he continued: “In our conversations I keep trying to make things hard; you keep taking me back to the simplest concepts. That helps me actually get things done.” It pleased me that he recognizes I tend to look at things from a ‘How do we get there in the fewest steps?’ mentality.

Not saying I take shortcuts… just that from my seat it seems if you start moving the details fill in themselves. That approach – which makes me a terrific brainstorming partner – works well… although some folks, usually engineers, may be frustrated by the lack of depth in some of my ideas.

Granted, if I was responsible for building bridges, launching rockets or performing brain surgery, it would be important to deep-dive into the plan; however, when my role is to move clients off ‘stuck,’ I find that suggesting two or three ‘first movement’ possibilities allows them to see through to the other side and take action toward desired results.

Interestingly, in my television days – and as recently as the past few months while preparing for the franchising conference I produced last week – people asked, “How do you keep all the details straight?” Of course, I maintain excellent notes and am continually double-checking to ensure everything is going as requested. However, at the highest level, I keep a picture of the overall theme vividly imprinted on my mind… and everything that flows from my imagination aligns with that vision.

Perhaps the lesson here is, to put a twist on Covey, begin with the beginning in mind.


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