As we know, business people are real people, and human behavior is human behavior.
If you work with people as long as I have, you’ll start to notice a lot of the same things happening regardless of the industry.
We, humans, love to make the same mistakes.
And so, with that being said, let’s jump in today talking about the knowing-doing gap and where so many people fall short of really achieving.
So if you think about contracting, if you think about us in the trades, where does it show up more than here?
I’m the CEO of a coaching and training company, but here’s what I know:
It’s not about what you know; it’s about what you do with what you know.
5 Areas To Help You Get Out Of The Knowing-Doing Gap
There have been a ton of books and posts and things written on this idea called the “knowing-doing” gap. I don’t want to rehash what everyone else has said.
But if you stop to think about it, it must really be a thing.
It must really be something natural to our human condition.
So I want to share my ideas on five areas, five questions, five tricks, or whatever you want to call it on, moving from knowing what to do to the actual doing of the tasks.
I talk about gaps in life and strategy all the time where, you know, yes, it’s about where you are right now and where you want to go.
And when you draw those two points, there creates a gap because there’s a gap between where you are and where you want to go.
Now that’s fine because all we’re doing is continuing to close that gap.
That’s why it’s important that we measure success by looking backward because as long as I’m looking forward, I’m never going to arrive.
I’m never going to get there.
But when I turn around and look behind me, I go, I’ve come quite a ways, right?
Be easy with yourself in your quest for life mastery, for business mastery, for leadership mastery, for financial mastery and realize you’ve come quite a ways, right?
So today, as we think about leadership and the knowing-doing gap, I just want you to really focus on these five things.
#1 Get Over The Knowledge Advantage Fantasy
If you can take notes, do it. Get a Google Doc open and start typing notes or copy-pasting key points.
Here’s the thing.
Get over the knowledge advantage fantasy.
There’s a lot of fantasies that bounce around in the world and what life’s going to be like at a certain time or moment.
There’s a knowledge advantage fantasy that you need to get out of your head: When you have a certain amount of knowledge, then you’re going to have an advantage.
Absolutely 100% false.
It’s an absolute fantasy.
It’s a fallacy.
It is all about your action.
So get that out of your head.
You know, it’s kind of like top-line intoxication that we talk about in the trades where it’s like, “Oh, as soon as I get to 5 million, as soon as I get to 10 million, as soon as I get to 25 million, it’ll all be easier.”
We’ve seen people struggling to make a dollar, and that is a tragedy, but it’s real.
There is no advantage to knowledge.
There’s only an advantage to the application of knowledge.
That’s how we learn from our experiences and grow. (Check out the link to an article I wrote on this topic.)
Get out of the knowledge advantage fantasy.
#2 Get Over Talk Tragedy
There’s something we call the talk tragedy. Get over the talk tragedy.
Never mistake talking for action.
When we’re talking about the knowing-doing gap here, talk is NOT doing.
I mean, I have countless calls with clients that are like, “Oh, I need to need to have the ‘difficult conversation.'”
Then stop talking about it and have the conversation!
I was just on with a client a couple of days ago and having a come-to-Jesus-moment with his service manager and long-term team member having some different strokes.
And I said to him, “How many times have you had this meeting?”
“Well, I haven’t had it yet. I mean, it’s, it’s a difficult meeting, you know, I, I don’t look forward to these. It’s kind of a struggle.”
I push my clients to be better, and sometimes it hurts, so I push him and push them and ask questions.
It’s not about how many times you met or how many times you thought about needing the talk. Get the talk done!
That’s what I want you to think about today between the knowing-doing gap.
There’s a talk tragedy that’s out there because he had had the meeting multiple times already in his mind, waking up in the night, thinking about it over coffee in the morning, driving to the office is today going to be the day and a million other things.
How am I going to structure the talk?
What phonetics am I going to use?
How am I going to have inflection in my voice?
But the doing never happened. It’s a talk tragedy.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying don’t plan and don’t prepare.
I’m saying get out of talk tragedy and don’t mistake that for action.
If I’m stuck between the knowing and doing gap, realize that talking is not action.
#3 Hit Mute And Write
Get what I’m saying?
Hit mute on everyone and everything distracting you from doing. If you need to write, get a pencil and paper, but hit mute on the distraction in your life.
Write. Write. And write.
Hit mute and write. Let your mind work and plan.
This isn’t delaying. This is preparing for action.
Talking is delaying.
Playing on your phone, even if it seems like work, is delaying.
Calm and slow your mind and start writing.
The point is to write because it slows down the conscious mind.
When I helped my client to slow down and go write about the meeting that he needed to have, what happened is they were able to slow their conscious mind down to where now their subconscious can start catching up and actually offer some solutions.
You have this going on, and it’s bouncing around, and you’re running it through your head.
Slow down and write because if there’s a gap between knowing and doing, you need to get clarity, and you need to write about why you’re not doing what you know you need to do.
#4 Commit For Real
Commit for real.
We say we want to do something and will, but we don’t. Why?
We don’t actually commit.
Say to yourself, “I’m doing it this time. Come hell or high water; it’s going to happen.”
This is what comes from denying the knowledge advantage myth, discarding talk tragedy, and hitting mute, and writing about what’s really going on.
You arrive at a point where you can say it.
So say it.
“I’m committing to this for real this time.”
I think back to when I first became an upfront contractor. I ran my numbers up front every time.
And I wanted to improve, or I thought I did.
I’d look up books or coaching and look for the cheaper options or even some free ones. Nothing came of them.
Why? I wasn’t committed.
It wasn’t until I invested serious time and money I got there. I was well and truly committed.
I spent some of my hard-earned money and invested.
How about you?
Where have you invested in?
You’re not doing what you need to now.
Get committed for real.
It’s okay. Be easy with yourself.
Don’t beat yourself up, but make sure that you actually commit and do something about it.
#5 Get The Necessary Leverage
Last point here: get the necessary leverage.
As leaders, we need leverage.
I’ve got a new book coming out later this year about leadership in the home service space.
And I’m going to help guide you through that.
I also want to do that with this blog and my podcast and Youtube and all that stuff.
And when I hear from you, when you email me, when we communicate, I want you to realize that as a leader, I love it.
Hit me up. Join the email list. Get involved.
KennyATKennyChapmanDOTcom is what you do. Just turn those capital words into the symbols. I don’t want to get hit with spam.
Maybe you’re an owner, maybe you’re, a general manager, maybe you’re a service manager, maybe you’re a lead technician that is sharpening your skills by being here, or maybe you’re a salesperson that is the top salesperson.
Whoever you are, you’re looking to increase your leadership, and this is why you’re reading here with us today.
All I care about is to be easy with yourself and realize you need some leverage.
We’ve got to get leverage on ourselves in order to create change in massive human behavior alterations.
That’s what we need until our subconscious can take over.
When you think about different life events, different major times, and when you’ve changed your life for different things like that, you had some leverage, something really pushing, driving, and forcing you down that path.
It may have felt like some external thing, but it was you the whole time.
It’s been quite some time ago now when I decided to be sober for life, and I needed some leverage on myself.
I didn’t have some tragedy or chaotic advent, thank God, that helped me make that decision.
I just decided one day that that was it.
And then, I created new routines.
I changed my habits.
I changed my schedule.
And I created some leverage, and I got an accountability coach.
That’s one of the things that I want you to think about is making sure that you know what an accountability partner is.
It can be a friend.
It can be another manager in your organization or even a formal coach.
I don’t recommend a spouse, though.
I do have clients that have spouses as their accountability partners, but just be cautious there.
But the point is that sometimes we’ll commit a little more for others until we get an opportunity to commit for ourselves.
I’m about you committing for yourself and creating leverage.
So you live the best life.
So you create the best version of yourself.
I want you to get the fruits of your labor.
There will always be a knowing-doing gap.
But progress and growth and stepping into your greatness are being able to figure out how to work on that gap.
It’s also the wisdom to know that it will never be fully closed, but you can track your progress by looking back and seeing how far you’ve come.
Be easy on yourself. Forgive it when you don’t.
But push yourself to move, to get the leverage and change.
There are certain things that you woke up this morning and knew you needed to do it.
You’re not going to do all of it.
Don’t beat yourself up.
Think about the gap, don’t expect your knowledge is an advantage without applying it, break yourself out of the talk tragedy, hit mute and write and let your subconscious catch up, commit for real, and use leverage or accountability to hold yourself to it.
The gap will never be closed, but you’ll get closer, and you’ll be a stronger leader for it.
Go make it a better-than-fantastic day!