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This business coaching episode explains how and why the details matter.

Results-Focused Training, Tools, and Workshops from Expert Business Coaches.

Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 1
  • Finding Time To Get Ahead: Achieving Big Goals Requires An Obsession and Mastery of the Smallest Details.
  • Lesson Nugget: Focus on the details! The details make the difference.
  • John Wooden:
    (American basketball player and coach. Nicknamed the "Wizard of Westwood," as head coach at UCLA he won ten NCAA national championships in a 12-year period, including an unprecedented seven in a row.)
  • John Wooden Success Pyramid:
  • Editor's Note: Kareem Abdul Jabbar with coach John Wooden
  • Notable Quotable: “It's the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen.”
    -John Wooden
    (American basketball player and coach. At UCLA he won ten NCAA national championships in a 12-year period, including an unprecedented seven in a row.)
  • Notable Quotable: “Details matter, it's worth waiting to get it right.”
    -Steve Jobs
    (American information technology entrepreneur and inventor. He was the co-founder, chairman, and chief executive officer of Apple Inc. Wikipedia)

- Okay, action step number four: achieving big goals requires an obsession and mastery of the smallest details, okay? So, we're talking about really becoming obsessed, obsessed with the specific things that need to get done and not just big visions, big goals, big dreams, you know. You gotta break em down so. - If you're if someone does not say you're anal? - Yeah? - Then you're not doing a good job. If someone doesn't say to you, "You are so anal. All you focus on is just, you know the details," then you're not gonna have success. If people do not say, "Calm down." I can't tell you how many times, I don't want to make up a number, but I would say at least a hundred times a week, I am in the room with somebody who'll say, "Let's not get stuck in all the details. Let's focus on the big idea." No, you begin with the end in mind. You don't change that, but you need to focus on the details. The details make the difference. The details are what matters and I'm gonna read a little John Wooden here if that's okay. Can I read a little Wooden? - John Wooden? Historical coach. - He, John Wooden is the basketball coach who is famous for winning more NCAA basketball championships than any other coach. This homeboy won, I believe, ten championships over a 12 year span? - UCLA. - With all different players of all different sizes. - You think he knows what he's saying now? - This guy is, let me walk you through John Wooden though before I give you this quote I want you guys to get this. John Wooden literally taught every single basketball player. Imagine that you were one of the best players in high school and you're recruited to play at UCLA for one of the best programs and imagine that one of the first practices, he did this with every single player, he sat down and he said, "This is how you put on your shoe." The players are like, "Are you kidding me?" He's like, "No, this is how you put on your shoe." And they go, "What do you do?" And he goes, "We will not ever miss a game with blisters, so we're gonna learn how to do this." And he taught them the right way to do it. Then he has a practice on this how we make a layup and the guy's like, "I'm pretty confident I can make a layup." That's just where you get close to the basket and you shoot straight off the backboard. And he's like, "Let's go ahead and do that." Then, this is how we do a bank shot from five feet. Then, this is how we pass the ball. This is how we play defense. This is how we, and he wouldn't move on to anything else until they had mastered the small thing and so guys who are like a freshman are going, "I've been at school for a month now and I'm literally just still practicing layups and how to put my shoes on." And he's like, but he wants to master every detail, the foundation. He calls it the success pyramid, but you build success upon success upon success upon success. What happens is you're playing against UCLA and true story, he would not watch game film of the other team because he knew what they did well and he says, "I don't even care what they're doing. We're gonna execute what I do. We're gonna focus on the details." And so one year they won the championship and they had Kareem Abdul Jabbar. Back in the day, his name was Alcindor and he was the best player in the country but then they had years where they had like super short dudes and they won. Why did they win? Cause he mastered the details. So I'm gonna read this to you. This is unbelievable. I mean ten championships in a 12 year period. Are you kidding me? Unbelievable. That's just, it gets me pretty stoked. It says, "It's the little details that are vital. Little things make big things happen." So, you really do have to focus on those little things. If you don't, you're not going to get anything done. So, if some people are watching this right now and you're guilty of having the big idea and I've done that too. Trust me, I was a young entrepreneur and I get it. You have all these ideas and you're like, "What we're going to do is we're gonna dominate on social media. Then we're gonna make videos and we're gonna go viral." If you have caught yourselves saying, "We're gonna go viral," that's not a viable plan. You have to go how specifically are we going to go vinyl or viral? So that's how we do it. Back to you, Marshall. - So another one of the famous mentors, famous successful businessmen is Steve Jobs. You know, some people know who he is. - Apple, shmapple. - And he's known for being maniacally focused on the details, you know. When he was building Next, Next the computer company. He built the cube, the perfect black cube? - Yeah. - And he would actually get out a ruler, "Why is this off by a tenth of a centimeter?" You know, tenth of an inch or whatever it is. He says, "Details matter. It's worth waiting to get it right."

Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 2
  • Jargonization Translation: Having or showing strong feelings or opinions; extremely earnest or serious.
  • Lesson Nugget: Don't ever "cut corners" when doing something. The saved time will come to light when examining quality.
  • Lesson Nugget: If you're going to be a top-level person, you have to be focused on the details.
  • Notable Quotable: “No genuine leader is ever “too busy” to do anything which may be required of him in his capacity as leader. When a man, whether he is a leader of followers, admits he is “too busy” to change his plans, or to give attention to any emergency, he admits his inefficiency. The successful leader must be the master of all details connected with his position.”
    -Napoleon Hill
    (American author in the area of the new thought movement who was one of the earliest producers of the modern genre of personal-success literature. www.naphill.org)
  • Notable Quotable: “Work like hell. I mean you just have to put in 80 to 100 hour weeks every week. [This] improves the odds of success. If other people are putting in 40 hour work weeks and you’re putting in 100 hour work weeks, then even if you’re doing the same thing you know that… you will achieve in 4 months what it takes them a year to achieve.”
    -Elon Musk
    (South African entrepreneur Elon Musk is known for founding Tesla Motors and SpaceX, which launched a landmark commercial spacecraft in 2012. www.biography.com)
  • Notable Quotable: "I never took a day off in my twenties. Not one. And I'm still fanatical, but now I'm a little less fanatical."
    -Bill Gates
    (American business magnate, philanthropist, investor, and computer programmer. Wikipedia)

- Can I go back to that black box? - Yeah. - I lost my mind... lost my mind the other day. And what happens is, is there's two parts of my, there's two parts of your self here, okay? There's the inner dialogue, this is literally what I felt, I get into my car after losing my mind, and I started to think, "am I too intense?" And then I thought back to Steve Jobs... Napoleon Hill, Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison, 'cause I read all the time. Jeff Bezos, and I'm going "No, I'm not detailed enough." But what happened was, is we had somebody who, same thing. We have a video company, photography video for weddings. And this person sent the bride an image that I thought was less than excellent. And they knew it was less than excellent. So I pulled them aside privately, because that's how you do it, and I was like "why would you do that? "This is somebody's wedding! "You've definitely cut a corner, you definitely know "that you sent a photo to somebody that wasn't awesome. "This is somebody's wedding, it's somebody's daughter. "Imagine if you are the father of the bride, "and you get this, you paid $20,000 to have the wedding, "$3,000 for photography, and you got this? "Come on, seriously I'm gonna go outside, I'll be back. "You can do better than that, you're making me crazy. "You can do better, but that is just, gah!" And I was just so mad, I get in my car and I literally was going... "Was I too intense?" And then I thought about the black box, and I thought about... "No, I'm not intense enough." And I will just tell you, if you're gonna be a top level business person, you have to be focused on the details, if you're not, you're gonna lose. - That's it, that's it. - Gotta do it. - Napoleon Hill, he goes on to say "no genuine leader is ever too busy to do anything. "Which may be required of him, "is in his capacity of a leader. "When a man, whether he is a leader of followers, "admits he is too busy to change his plans or give "attention to any emergency, he admits his inefficiency. "The successful leader must be a master of all details "connected with his position." - We have one of the businesses I'm involved in, we had a young lady last week, who's having a melt down. So she calls me, sends a text, having a melt down. And because I am her leader, I have to make time to help that person. Now, people who don't work with me anymore, they don't work here and they're not working as part of the team, I can't have time for everybody in the world that's having a melt down, but I didn't have time. I thought mentally, "I don't have time for that call." But then I'm going "I have to." It's whatever is needed, whatever you need to get done must get done. So this comes back to "you need to watch the treading "on the sixth day" principle. But if you're a Judaeo Christian worldview, and I know some people are like "that's so offensive, I can't believe you "said Judaeo Christian." Let' me start with Elon Musk, who we know is not a Judaeo Christian, then we'll come back to the Judaeo Christians. Elon Musk, I wanna put this quote on the screen, he just talks about how you must work 60 to 80 hours to get it done. I mean once you get the company into orbit you don't need as much rocket fuel. But when you're getting it going, you just have to do it, you gotta grind. Bill Gates, look up this Bill Gates quote, he said "I did not take a single day off in my 20's."

Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 3
  • Notable Quotable: "For in six days the LORD made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; but on the seventh day he rested. That is why the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy."
    -Exodus 20:11
    (The Holy Bible)
  • Lesson Nugget: If you are not detailed, you will be dominated by those that are detailed.
  • Recommended Reading:
    -Benjamin Graham
  • Recommended Reading:
    -Dale Carnegie

- The guy who wrote the Bible allegedly is God, and he said that he created the earth in six days, not seven. So six, there is a day of rest in there, but apparently it took him six days, and apparently he had a lot of stuff going on, but it took him six days. Not five, not four, it didn't take Elon Musk four days a week. You gotta just get serious, you gotta quit reading your socialist curriculum from wherever you're getting this information, and you gotta understand, you have to get it done. Whatever it takes. - Okay, Clyde. So you got somebody that says, Well I'm not detail-oriented. That's so good for you, but - [Clyde] Oh, that's Satan talking. -It's a Spanish Satan now. Oh, I'm a total person. All right Clyde, so obviously there are some people that obviously do not have a personality that is detailed, who is detailed. What would you say to a person like that, that says, well that's good for you Clyde, but, I don't want details. - Get ready to lose to me. Get ready for me to eat all of your lunch. - [Man in red tie] There you go. - I'm just being real. So we have a haircut business, and I will absolutely kick your insert-the-word if you're not detailed. I will just beat you up. If you're a competitor, we have a guy who opened up a hair salon, I know this guy, if you're watching, I'm beating you and you know I am. So this guy, he opens up a hair salon, he comes into our office and he's kinda spying on us, which is cool, I respect that move. He's spying, he's trying to get all the ideas. I see him, he's taking photos. I ain't mad or nothing, but you know why? Because I know he's not detailed. He's choosing not to, I'm gonna just beat him up, so he starts his hair salon down the road, out of business. Yes! Victory for elephant in the room. - So you cannot get ahead in life, in business or anything, if you don't pay attention to the little details. - Martin Luther King, people go, he's such a good speaker. No, that guy practiced. You want to talk about President Obama, they say he's such a gifted orator. Gifted? What does that mean? That guy practiced! He's awesome as a speaker because he's practiced. Warren Buffet, people say, he's just such a good investor. No he's not, he got the book that's, by the way, everybody can buy this book by Graham, what's the name of the book? It's The Intelligent Investor by Graham. - [Man on right] Benjamin Graham. - You are so awesome, you're on fire! But what you do is you get that book, Warren Buffet tells anyone who will listen, get The Intelligent Investor by Graham, and go to Dale Carnegie and get his book How to Win Friends and Influence People, and read it. That's what Warren Buffet says to do. Anyone can do it, but someone goes, I'm not detailed, I just don't want - You're gonna lose! Get serious. - Don't you know a bakery or somebody that bakes? If details really are not important, why do we follow recipes? If you're making a big wedding cake or chocolate chip cookies whatnot, and you forget the baking soda or the baking powder, if details really didn't matter, why do we follow a recipe or a checklist, you know what I'm saying? - That's why some of my smoothies are legendarily terrible, because I'm not following a checklist or a system, there's no detail, I'm like, looks good, put it in - Yeah, I made you that latte the other day, and I had a system, and it was pretty good. - Yeah, it was on fire. So if you're watching this right now, if you have to declare and you gotta speak to the mountains, say, I am going to become detailed. Don't let that become a crutch or an issue. You gotta move on. You gotta master it, you have to do it. You just cannot work your way around that one.

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