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What if you started thinking of your business as the lottery you control?

We recently conducted a planning exercise for business owners where we asked this question:

“If we gave you $100,000 today, how would you spend it to maximize profits?”

I didn’t come up with the intriguing question on my own — that credit goes to A Smart Bear known as Jason Cohen. The answers, mine and those submitted by others, were extremely interesting! It is a question well worth considering.

Haven’t you ever played the “what if” game when fantasizing about winning the lottery? Your odds to win are certainly much better in building your own business. Perhaps you should start thinking of your business as the lottery you control. You can play with any prize amount (why limit yourself to $100K?) and you should expect some damn good business ideas to come from the exercise.

From there all you need to do is expand your thinking to come up with a few ways of actually getting the money; then spend it as planned. What could be cooler?’ Or more fun? [We don’t create budgets in SMARTSTART; we create “spending plans“.]

Jason had another great question as well that is also worth considering very seriously. It was:

“If forced to hire someone today, how would you define his/her job such that s/he would cover the expense?”

As a former Fortune 500 executive, I remember asking myself that very same question more than once back in the day. It always led me to the strategy needed to move my department forward. It works for independent business owners too. Try it for yourself! At the very least it will open your eyes to tasks and priorities that may require some adjustment.

Besides, sooner or later your business will expand to include others. Wouldn’t it be nice to know how to make the best use of these resources? You could start with offloading hated tasks and those you shouldn’t be doing in the first place. Or, you can delegate or outsource tasks that, if they weren’t done as perfectly by someone else, wouldn’t negatively impact your business.

So, when was the last time you fantasized changing the operation of your business?