So this leads us to secret weapon number one, which I call constraint clarity. And constraints is one of my primary concepts that has made such a difference for me and my clients over the years, and it’s understanding that in any situation, there’s one thing that’s the roadblock. There could be several things that aren’t working well. But there’s one thing that’s the primary roadblock.
So the constraints are your North Star and getting clear on your constraints forces you to be focused. And it’s the absolute fastest path to growth. If you figure out what your constraint is, and I’m going to show you in a minute some examples, and you put all your attention on clearing that constraint, that by definition is the fastest way to get things moving for your business.
So what is a constraint? So this is my kindergarten sketch of a garden hose attached to a faucet. And that hose has a little kink in it. It’s got a little narrow spot. And when that happens, let’s say, that tap is capable of pushing out 10 gallons of water per minute, but my little kink in the hose, the narrow spot, is only capable of letting one gallon through. What that means is that out the other end of that hose, I’m only going to get one gallon. I’m only going to get as much as the constraint allows. And the reason this is important is because it doesn’t matter how much more water I try to force into the tap. Let’s say I could increase that capacity to 20 gallons a minute. It literally would make no difference in how much water I’m getting out the other side.
So if I do any work before the constraint, or any work after the constraint, it’s literally a waste of time and effort. When you understand that, it makes decision making so much easier. When you understand, you look at your funnel and you figure out, hey, is my traffic converting? Is my landing page converting? There’s a lot of moving parts. Once you understand where the constraint is, then you realize that there’s no point working anywhere other than the constraint. And it just sets you up for success.
So this Theory of Constraints is developed by this man here, Eliyahu M. Goldratt. I’m probably mispronouncing his name, but he wrote this book, The Goal, that’s influenced industry all over the world. And it’s a fantastic, fantastic read and it gives you superpowers.
When you can look at a situation with this understanding – and hey, they’ve got a graphic novel now, that makes it much easier to consume and understand it – so your constraint is the real problem with your funnel. Your constraint is where you should focus 90 percent of your time and effort. And finding your constraint is half the battle.
This is a question that I use when I’m troubleshooting a client or someone comes to me and says, you know, my funnel is not working. I want to get more customers. The question I ask them is, what stops you from buying more customers tomorrow than you did today? Now I use the language specifically from buying more customers. If you’re running paid traffic, if you’re investing in Facebook ads, you’re essentially buying customers; you’re spending money to get a new customer in your business.
And so, what would happen if you put $10,000 or $100,000 into Facebook Ads tomorrow? Where would things break? And when you ask that question, you quickly start to come up with answers. And depending on where you’re at, some businesses can absorb $100,000 into Facebook, no problem. Other businesses, you put $5,000 and it’s a complete waste of money because maybe the ads aren’t good enough, and the click-through rates are too low, or the landing page is not converting.
When you think about this, it’s like opening the tap, letting a huge flow of water come through, where will things start to break? And take a minute to ask yourself this question in your business, if you were to invest 10,000 tomorrow, are you comfortable with that? Or is that a really scary idea? And if it’s a scary idea, why is that? Where do you think things will start to fall apart? So it’s a great way to start the process of identifying your constraint.
Make more, scale faster with help from Kory Basaraba at Grow Fast Marketing
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