Summary: Fix This Next by Mike Michalowicz
Summary: Fix This Next by Mike Michalowicz

Summary: Fix This Next by Mike Michalowicz

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Business is all about solving problems.

As a leader, you’re responsible for not only preventing also putting out fires. Fix This Next (FTN), framework gives you the pause necessary to pinpoint the root causes and core issues that’s setting your business on fire (or for that matter preventing your business from getting to the next level). As the author puts it:

“When things are moving along but just not moving forward, FTN points to your true north.”


Biggest problem leaders have is they don’t know what’s their biggest problem is.

One thing business leaders struggle when it comes to problem solving is they don’t know what problem to solve first. And often times, the biggest problems aren’t most clamoring for your attention. Your job as a leader is to look for the fire that needs to be put out before it becomes a blazing inferno.


Business Hierarchy of Needs (BHN)

business hierarchy of needs


5 core needs for Sales

  1. Lifestyle congruence – know your company’s sales performance to support your personal comfort
  2. Prospect attraction – attract quality prospects to reach your required sales
  3. Client conversation – convert those prospects to clients
  4. Delivering on commitments – deliver your commitments to clients
  5. Collecting on commitments – make sure your clients deliver their commitments


5 core needs for Profits

  1. Debt eradication – remove more debts than you’re accumulating
  2. Margin health – improve profit margins for each of your offering
  3. Transaction frequency – attract clients to buy from you more often
  4. Profitable leverage – leverage debt to increase profitability
  5. Cash reserves – maintain enough cash reserves to cover expenses for at least 3 months


5 core needs for Order

  1. Minimized wasted effort – improve your management systems and operations model to reduce inefficiencies
  2. Role alignment – align roles and responsibilities to talents
  3. Outcome delegation – empower people closest to the problem to resolve it
  4. Linchpin redundancy – design your business to operate independent of you (or key people)
  5. Mastery reputation – attain reputation for being the best in your sector


5 core needs for Impact

  1. Transformation Orientation – benefit clients beyond the transaction to transform their lives
  2. Mission Motivation – inspire your employees, give them a reason to work for your company (other than the paycheck)
  3. Dream Alignment – align individual missions with that of your business
  4. Feedback Integrity – build a transparent culture where feedback can flow freely
  5. Complementary Network – seek to collaborate with businesses with shared interests


5 core needs for Legacy

  1. Community Continuance – build a loyal customer base that supports and defends your business
  2. Intentional Leadership Turn – plan for leadership to transition with circumstances
  3. Heart-based Promoters – turn your employees and customers into brand advocates
  4. Quarterly Dynamics – fine-tune your vision, mission and values quarterly
  5. Ongoing Adaptation – constantly find ways to improve your management systems, operations, products and customer experience


Address the 5 layer of needs using OMEN method

Objective – what’s the result you intend to achieve?

Measurement – what’s the most straightforward way to measure your progress?

Evaluation – how and when will you analyze your measurements?

Nurture – how will you make necessary improvements?


Here’s an example.

Let’s say you want to attract more quality prospects. This is how you can apply the OMEN method:

Objective: You need more quality prospects. In the past, you qualified almost every lead as a quality prospect. On top of that, the conversations you had with those prospects were mostly about price negotiation. Once you managed to convert them to a client, you spent half of your time fixing that client’s needs rather than going over the results you delivered.

Measurement: You offer your services with a fixed fees. You need regular positive cash flow so you can occasionally be flexible on price. But it turns out most of your prospects are hard bargainers. So, you decided to track the ratio of questions your prospects ask about the execution of work, compared to the number of questions the prospects have about the outcome.

Evaluation: Your agency is landing about one client a week out of four prospects. You decided that a good interval to check in your results is once a month. That means your sample size is about sixteen clients a month. You then created a simple three-column spreadsheet file. The first column includes a “Yes/No” answer to the question “Did the prospect ask for a discount?” The second column answers “Number of questions about our process? and the third “Number of questions about the outcome we deliver?”

Nurture: You now work with your sales team that is handling your inbound prospects. They suggest putting up a whiteboard to track the number of quality prospects your agency converts. They also give you a crucial insight that your website is beautiful but it tries to appeal to everyone.  They subsequently recommend you to serve a niche with specific needs. And you did.

Result: It turns out your website revamp changed everything. Your inbound rate dropped but your conversion rate soared. In other words, you disqualified more leads and attracted more quality prospects. The numbers are pointing to the success of your efforts and with that, you have fixed your quality prospect attraction problem.

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