Are you in the business of addition, multiplication, or "power of"?

by Daniel Batten on March 7, 2010

As I was about to start re-jigging some positioning for a client today something struck me.

Most people are in the business of addition. They rely on adding up the number of hours a day, squeezing a little more efficiency out here and there, but never truly multiplying the results of what they do.

Some people are in the business of multiplication. They take something – say a product – and “multiply” its perceived value by telling a compelling story about how you can use it that will genuinely benefit your life. Some marketers of course will also simply manipulate the human subconscious in order to raise the perceived value without adding any real benefit. Both are possible.

That’s why people doing sales and marketing generally get paid order-of-magnitude more than the doers. The doers are in the business of addition. The sales and marketers are in the business of multiplication. Both of course are necessary. Without the doers, there is nothing to multiply.

But what about “power of”? 3 x 3 is a better result than 3+ 3. But what about 3 “to the power” 3. What would be even more powerful than sales and marketing leverage?

I am pondering this now and I think I have an answer. I believe it has something to do with authentic conviction matched with courage. When I think about the moments in life that really make a fundamental difference, they are when we went out of the ordinary to do something outrageous. The time we did some outrageous thing that got the attention of someone we loved who didn’t yet know we existed – and now they are our husband/wife; the time we took some outrageous action with a company and now we have a dream-job. The time we took an opportunity we didn’t feel wholly prepared for – and now we have a thriving business.

So are you in the business of addition, multiplication or “power of”? The third is the most powerful by far – it also takes the most courage. It also causes us to grow the most. Ask yourself right now “What authentic action can I take today that scares me, which will move me ahead to a whole new plane!” Then do it.

If you still wont do it, then at least do this right now: form a master-mind group, a circle of peers, or a coaching relationship with someone who will hold you to a higher standard, and hold you to account for doing this.

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