I wanted to share my experience of what “DONE” looked like as I completed my goal of writing and publishing a book last year. I think you’ll find my story one that you can relate to because it will echo similar experiences you may have had with projects in your business.
“What does DONE look like?”
It’s one of my favorite phrases to teach a leadership team. When we use it in Rock setting, we say, “if it is a SMART Rock, we know what DONE looks like.” It reduces ambiguity and increases clarity (hallmarks of a healthy team) and we’ve essentially all made an agreement about what we will FOCUS on for the next 90 days.
For the last nine months, I’ve had my own experience with “what DONE looks like.” And lest you think I had a bun in the oven (nine month terms bring back memories of LONG ago), I was actually writing a book! Now, this is no surprise to those who know me well, and you probably got a little sick of me telling you it was “done!” Being a 9-QuickStart on the Kolbe scale and a low C on my Culture Index Profile (Rainmaker!), no one has been more anxious than me for this project to be actually DONE!
What I’ve learned (and what many of you are also learning) is that there is DONE, there is DONE, DONE and finally, there is DONE, DONE, DONE!
What my stages of “Done” looked like:
* April 15th – The idea for the book solidified. (And taxes paid, just like you!)
* July 12th – The skeleton and content were complete, but then I had another idea: the book would be MORE USEFUL with tools! It was done, but not complete. (Do you ever “add on” to your Rock? I see you smirking!)
* August 5th – I was convinced I had the best book that would ever come out of MY brain; I was DONE! So, I sent it to some test readers for feedback. (Anyone ever got the “Well, I haven’t approved that yet!” look from a leadership team member?)
* September 30th – I had incorporated the feedback and the book went through its fifth full edit. (Thanks, Keen Editing Service!) I celebrated that it was DONE, DONE! Then, it had to be produced. (Have you ever said, “Hey, what did we ever do with that Rock we started in Q1?” or “Now we need to implement the Rock . . . oh crap!”)
Finally, on December 16th, the cover and interior were ready to PRINT! Is that DONE, DONE, DONE?
I could go ON and ON about the various stages of DONE, but to keep myself sane during this process, I made 90-day Rocks that helped me meet my eventual objective: a book, in print, available for others to use to add value to their enterprise.
My 90-day rocks and due dates helped me stay focused on my objectives. My rocks were self-imposed, and my assistant, Lindsey, kicks my butt if I’m off track (thanks, Lindsey!). I also learned the difference between FINISHED and PERFECT. During the feedback process, I felt paralyzed as to what feedback to take and what feedback to reject. I knew I wanted a simple, authentic and actionable book. (I knew what DONE looked like to me, but I was fearful of OWNING it!) Some readers said I should go deeper into theory, some said I should add more examples, some said I shouldn’t have a casual “kick your ass” tone, others said I needed to make it more professional. My coaching “idol,” Steve Chandler, graciously spent time with me on the phone and he said, “Jill, it will never be perfect, but you can DECIDE when it is finished.”
Call it DONE, or call it FINISHED. I’m happy to announce that by focusing on my Rocks each quarter, and saying NO to a lot of other crap, the book is DONE, DONE, DONE. The book is now available for sale on Amazon!
My next quarter’s rock is to get this book into the hands of people it can help. And that means creating some buzz. I invite you download a sample chapter by texting the word “chapter” to 44222, and our automated system will get it to you right away.
Why the free chapter? Because this quarter’s Rock is to sell the dang thing! Thanks in advance for creating buzz! Keep reading for a quick summary of why you need this book.
Earn It! A Summary:
When one of your employees asks for a raise, does your inner voice scream, “UGGHHH!”? For most bosses, this is reality. You feel pressure to “take care” of your people, but at the same time, you feel pressure from the P&L Statement. Earn It! is your solution! The next time someone asks you for a raise, hand them the book and say, “I’m glad that you are looking for opportunities for growth, please read this book and come talk with me in a few weeks.”
In Earn It!, your employees will find skills and tools that will help them EARN the raise they want by PRODUCING MORE MEASURABLE VALUE. They’ll learn (in a fun, simple, take-charge way) how to SEE the big picture of the company, SAY the things that need to be said, SOLVE issues within their departments and SERVE others by teaching them to be productive, too. The employees who take this opportunity will become the STARS of your company, freeing you up to do the strategic leadership you’ve always wanted to do.
Here’s to OWNING your DONE.