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"Jumbled Wires"

by Dave Balch, "The Stay-at-Home CEO"™

(c) 2002, A Few Good People, Inc.

I dare you… look behind your computer. My guess is that it’s a big, ugly, horrendous-looking jumble of wires. Looks complicated, doesn’t it? How could that possibly make sense to anyone? How would you ever figure it out if you had to?

If you really think about it, though, it is really just a lot of simple connections, each of which makes total sense and is easy to understand. Let’s take a look: right off the bat you have the power cord for the computer itself. The monitor has a power cord and computer connection; that’s two more wires. And then there is the keyboard and mouse; another two. That’s five wires so far. You probably have speakers, so there is at least one more wire from the computer to one speaker, and then a wire from that speaker to the other. Seven wires. Some speakers require their own power; that power cord now makes eight. What about the printer power cord and computer connection? Don’t forget the telephone connection! We’re up to ten wires, and this is a simple system! What if you have an external modem, and/or external Zip drive, or….???

In this example, each connection is simple to understand and its necessity is obvious, but when you look at ten wires all running hither and yon behind your desk, it looks pretty complicated. In actuality, though, it isn’t.

So it is with many things that we have to do to run our businesses. That big, dark mystery that is "marketing" seems so complicated; but it is really just a number of steps required to communicate the benefits of your product or service to your target market. Sales? Sales consists of those things that you have to do to move someone from "just interested" to saying "yes".

The point I’m getting to is that just because something looks complicated doesn’t mean that it actually is complicated. So, rather than get discouraged and decide that you can’t do what ever it is (also known as "giving up"), break it down into some basic elements that are easier to get your arms around.

For example, would you like to get better at using the Internet? URL’s, search engines, browsers, Yahoo!, directories, hyperlinks, e-mail, bookmarks, eBooks… wow! That’s an awful lot to learn! Sounds really complicated, doesn’t it? Maybe that’s intimidating to you, but don’t let it be. If you break it down into small pieces and then master it bit by bit, you’ll find that it’s not too much to learn. First, experiment with your browser. Just do something simple. Look in any magazine and find a web address and enter it into the browser, or use mine: It doesn’t matter what it is; we’re just practicing. What do you know… you’re browsing the Internet! Try some different things. Click here or there to see what happens. Just do a little at a time, and presto! You’re cruisin’ the information highway.

The next time you need to do something that just seems too complicated, remember those jumbled wires. It probably isn’t as complicated as it seems.

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© Copyright 2003, A Few Good People, Inc.
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