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Monday, May 27, 2013

Go Big or Go Home: "Big Thinks"

Debra Quarles

Our last article focused on abundance and checking your numbers to determine whether you were on track. This time we will talk about how to incorporate “Big Thinking” to take you to the next level in your practice.

Those who are successful, in ventures of any kind, know it is important to take time out of your business to think on your business. How much time do you spend on “Big Thinks?” Are you looking into the future and setting goals? Do you spend time thinking of new innovations, methods or ideas that could improve your practice?

The day-to-day activities of running your practice: caring for patients, working with employees and handling all the challenges of the day, is not conducive to having “Big Thinks.” Instead, time must be set aside where ideas can come forth.

In Alexandria, Egypt, in the third century, there was a librarian who was a curious man. One day he heard that in the well-known town of Syene on the longest day of the year, there was a water well where the sun would not cast a shadow. This perplexed him, as he’d noted on the longest day of the year in Alexandria all the pillars and columns produced shadows. So he made his way to Syene and on the longest day of the year he looked down the well. Sure enough, the sun did not cast a shadow. Nor did the sun cast a shadow from the pillars or columns in Syene. From this information Eratosthenes concluded that the Earth was round. Now that is a “Big” thought. In fact, it is an enormous thought. Not all “Big Thinks” are like that. Some are subtle.

One week a client was vacationing in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. As she was enjoying the sun on her balcony, the maids came in to clean her room. She heard them singing. When she returned home, she called me immediately. “Debra,” she said, “the maids in Mexico were singing while they cleaned my room.” Her “Big Think?” The maids who were cleaning her room were going about their work happy. She wanted more happiness in her office. “Big Think.”

For more than a decade I’ve worked with a client. When I first started working with them, they provided me with a white board we leaned against their front office counter. I would spend time removing items that were already on the counter, find a way of propping up the white board and then a way of weighting it so it wouldn’t fall during my presentation. The board listed periodically and would fall. I would put it back and we would continue. It leaned a certain way and to see the words I wrote, some in the group would have to sit forward or move their chairs. Twice a month for more than a decade I did this. Then one day I had a “Big Think.” Perhaps I should bring in the easel I kept in the trunk of my car. The easel had not been in there for a decade, but I am embarrassed to say, it had been in there for a few years. I used it with all my clients who had started with me in the last three years, but had never considered the benefit it would provide to those groups who I had worked with longer. It had become a habit to move the items on the counter. A ritual to prop it up and only when I had time to think did it occur to me that I could make my life and the lives of the others in the meeting better by a change. That “Big Think” did not only impact one client. I had several others who benefited from the easel I kept in the car’s trunk. 

Great teams take effort. Take time to work on your practice regularly to build teamwork and strengthen your results. For more information and to read other articles, please visit us at www.saltdpm.com.


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