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Five Things we learned from “The Compound Effect”

The Compound Effect by Darren HardyWhether you are building a business or just trying to build a better life for yourself, the book I have just finished reading is perfect for you.

“The Compound Effect” by Darren Hardy takes a look at the way that small actions influence our lives and long-term goals every day. The advice in this book is mostly common-sense practice that people simply ignore in their day to day lives. It does contain a lot of “aha” moments that will influence the way you operate and interact with people. The author ties each “lesson” in with powerful real world examples from his own experience as a business coach and Editor of Success Magazine.

Here’s five take away lessons that I picked up reading “The Compound Effect”:

The Compound Effect

Each day, we make thousands of big and small decisions. Every one of these decisions “compounds” with other decisions to determine whether we achieve the goals we set for ourselves. Some decisions set us on a path to a positive outcome, others to a negative outcome. This is “The Compound Effect” in action and, whether you like it or not, it’s happening every day. We’re powerless to stop it – it’s part of life.

Our actual power lies in the fact that we can choose to make the right choices that will compound to achieve desired goals we seek. This is where the book steps in to help.

Be the Tortoise

The book makes it very clear that effective change does not happen overnight. Making a “gung-ho” decision and jumping in all guns blazing to achieve your goals may appear to work in the short term. In the long run though, that effort could simply burn out your enthusiasm and lead you right back to square one. A good example is a diet blitz – cutting out all the yummy things in your diet may appear to be a good idea at first but is it sustainable?

To succeed, be the tortoise and make slow, sustainable changes to your life that you can keep steadfast to. The results will not be visible overnight but six months down the track, you will have gained a steady momentum and you’ll definitely see the benefits.

Small Steps, Big ChangesSmall Changes can make a BIG Difference

An analogy is given in the book of a plane flying east from Los Angeles. Just a slight 1 ½ degree change in the plane’s direction results in a massive difference in its final destination (over 150kms). This is comparable with the small choices we make in life – small choices we make over time will either lead us to achieve our desired goals or, if we make the wrong choices, somewhere totally different.

Track Everything

To keep yourself on the right path, the book suggests tracking everything you do to achieve your desired goals. If you want to lose weight, keep a diet and exercise diary. If you want to grow your business, write down the steps that are being implemented to achieve that goal.

Tracking keeps us accountable to ourselves – it becomes a habit to record what you are doing and, if you miss a day, you will feel that you didn’t really commit on that day. This feeling alone will drive you in future to keep your tracking (and desired goal) in mind.

Make the Change a Habit

The overall message of “The Compound Effect” (for me anyway) is to make each step towards your ultimate goal part of your daily routine. Add the changes in such a way that you can commit to them every single day without fail.

Once the changes are a consistent habit, the desired goals will become part of your reality and they won’t disappear overnight like when a “quick fix” fails to deliver long term results.


I have only just finished reading “The Compound Effect” but in the past week, I have put two plans into action and I’m feeling the benefits already. One small action involves one “follow up” calls to prospective clients each day and, as a result, I have added two new clients for Rusty Mango. The other plan that I am implementing involves my own health and fitness – it’s a work in progress but one that I feel I can stick to.

“The Compound Effect” is a book for anyone who wants to effect change somewhere in their lives – not just entrepreneurs and small business owners.

How to Revive your Website – with a simple formula used by Gordon Ramsey!

Gordon Ramsey

(c) Jean_Nelson

Recently I have rediscovered the viewing pleasures of watching “Kitchen Nightmares” on TV. In each episode, celebrity chef and businessman, Gordon Ramsey, visits a struggling restaurant and spends a week there trying to turn their fortunes around. Always very clever in his methods and very VOCAL in his actions, Ramsey seems to have the magic “formula” that can take even the direst restaurant and turn it around in a number of days.

That formula can be easily adapted to any kind of industry, not just into hospitality. If you are willing to apply honesty and commitment to the process, the “Ramsey Formula” can also be used to revive an underperforming website and turn it into the customer conversion machine that it needs to be.

After watching (too) many episodes of “Kitchen Nightmares”, here’s the formula for reviving a website as I see it:

Get PASSIONATE about your Website

The commitment and passion that you (hopefully) feel for your actual business needs to be reflected on the pages of your website. After all, it is the online extension of your business.

Your website can be so much more to your customers than just an online brochure – but only if you COMMIT to making it so. The site’s appearance and its content should reflect the passion that got you into your business in the first place. It should also reflect your personality – you are a real person and need to come across as such. Customers will respond better.

Who are your CUSTOMERS and what do they WANT?

There’s no point examining your current website and its strengths and weakness unless you have a clear snapshot of who you target audience is. Anyone who has undertaken a Facebook Ad will have used the “wizard” for determining your target audience according to age, gender, location, etc.

Tailor-make all of the content so it is directed straight at your desired audience. If you can identify who they are, it makes the process easier to identify what they are looking for and give it to them.

Ramsey demonstrates this in one episode where he visits an old English pub and finds them cooking fancy al-la-carte meals. He quickly identifies this as one of the business’ problem and switches them back to what the pub-going public want – pub food!

Time to get BRUTAL

Chef Ramsey is good at this bit – he calls it “finding your bollocks”…

Stand back. Take a good look at your current online offering from the eyes of your target audience. Can they get exactly what they are looking for? Is it easy to access? Can they make a purchase quickly and simply? Is there fresh content that helps them do what they want to do? And most importantly, can they engage with the business through the site?

And remember, be honest. You might be in love with your site but is your customer?

Once you have identified the site’s “failings”, it might be time to trim the fat.

Whatever you have to do – embrace the change and make it work!

Is your site good at ANYTHING?

On “Kitchen Nightmares”, Chef Ramsey encourages restaurant owners to find a niche and use it as the drawcard to the business.
As the business owner, get in contact with your customers and use their feedback to identify the key item that your website does very well. This item (depending on what it is) could become the main drawcard of your website and draw potential customers into the site. Once they’re “hooked”, use your marketing skills to on-sell the other products and services that you offer.

Just remember to not offer so much that you can’t deliver (another lesson from Chef Ramsey).

I’m sure I’m not the only fan of the abrasive but clever Gordon Ramsay and his methods – so please leave a comment below on how you have used a “Ramsey” method in your own business. My comment area looks a little sad and neglected at the moment (one area I intend to work on), so I’d love to hear from you.

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