written by BRICE HOGAN | HABITS, IMPROVEMENT
We are often taught to think big. What is your big, hairy, audacious goal? Your BHag as a good friend of mine calls it. This is good advice. There is nothing that motivates you more than something that could be huge and amazing.
Whether that is growing personally or if you are an entrepreneur, building your business or career.
But in order to grow, it's not the big things that matter, eventually, it could become something big. But in order to grow, you probably should think small.
"Think small and act small, and we'll get bigger (and better). Think big and act big we'll get smaller"
- Herb Kelleher-
1 Percent Improvements
This is really the embodiment of thinking small. You cannot get to where you want if you don't take a step. It simply won't happen.
For decades British Cycling floundered at the bottom of the cycling world never penetrating the top. It was so bad that sponsors did not want them riding their bikes because it affected sales.
They hired Dave Brailsford a management guru that focused on 1% improvements (thinking small). He began to apply his philosophy by making small improvements to the biker's equipment, clothing and training.
Better seats, optimal training, switching from outdoor suits to indoor ones because they were better aerodynamically.
Then he did some pretty radical things. They kept the bikes in a dust-free environment, found the optimal pillows for the bikers to sleep on, and the best way to wash their hands to keep from getting sick.
All of these small acts. Added up. When Dave took over Britain's cycling team in 2003 they had never won a Tour De France, they had only one gold medal they won in the early 1900's.
Within 5 years they won 60% of the cycling gold medals at the 2008 Olympic games in Beijing. Four years later in London, they set nine Olympic world records.
During the ten-year span from 2007 to 2017, British cyclists won 178 world championships and 66 Olympic or Paralympic gold medals and captured 5 Tour de France victories in what is widely regarded as the most successful run in cycling history.
It's amazing that thinking small had such a radical effect. We can often miss the big picture and small things when we are focused on the "Big Plans" we have.
When we bring it down to the smaller details they are easier to manage, less difficult to miss, and more often easier to execute.
While I tend to be a big dreamer. I work at keeping things small as I work to build the community I am building doing so keeps me sane but also focused on the right thing.
How can you break down a goal or a project you are working on, that might be overwhelming you into "thinking small"?