In the previous article in this series, I told you How to Build an Unstoppable Business. I used Jim Collins’ “flywheel” concept to illustrate.
I told you how to identify the six handles you can use to roll your business forward. We teach you how to remove obstacles, push on the six handles and get your flywheel turning in the Incubator.
In the Founder Phase, you’re really going to be pushing your flywheel yourself. But if you’ve made a smooth wheel and haven’t placed any speed bumps in your own path (like underpricing), you can still get the wheel turning pretty well.
In the Farmer Phase, you can get other people to help you turn the flywheel. You turn specific handles over to them one at a time. Gradually, your job becomes leadership: getting everyone to push together in the same direction.
And, finally, your job is to have someone else take over the leadership role so that you can work on your own flywheel.
The Six F’s
One gym is enough to make a living. But entrepreneurs often want more in their lives: They want another business or a bigger stage. They want a wealth platform. I call this the Tinker Phase, and Tinkers build personal flywheels.
The handles on your personal flywheel are:
Fitness—This is your physical and emotional capacity to meet your challenges. Are you ready? Can you manage your stress, your physical output demands—and your response to both? Can you last long enough to finish the race?
Finances—Do you have the capital necessary to invest in your big goals, and are you prepared for the increased financial risk at this stage?
Freedom—Do you have enough wealth to create choice? Are you free to spend your time and money in constructive ways? Do you have enough positive constraints to keep you focused?
Family—This is the sum of all of your relationships. Are you surrounded by the right people? Do your relationships make you happy or angry or sad? Who surrounds you, and where are they taking you? Where are you taking them?
Faith—This handle represents the belief that order exists among chaos, that we are not helplessly falling, that we have control over our destiny, that happiness is attainable.
Where’s the flywheel rolling to? Happiness.
One of my most controversial articles this year was called “Fat People on Mars.” In that post, I wrote that the ultimate goal of all of this—business, fitness and money—was to achieve happiness. But happiness isn’t a static state: You don’t simply cross the border into heaven, find a seat and sit down for eternity.
Happiness is an active process. To be happy, you have to keep the flywheel moving. That means a balance of challenge and triumph, of focus and creativity, of finances and time. People are happiest when they’re moving.