Find Your Zone of Genius

A skier in mid-action, wearing a yellow jacket and black pants, soaring through the air during a jump.

Recently, I was on a call with Clark Vautier. We were supposed to be talking about business stuff but, as often occurs while talking with Clark, our conversation devolved into our mutual love of climbing mountains, outdoor adventures, and, well… LIFE.

We are aligned on the idea that one’s business should fuel *living* and when you deprioritize the parts of your existence that *really* matter, you are doing yourself, your community, and the world a disservice.

Now, that doesn’t mean you have to sell your laptop and go live in a van in Yosemite or something, but certainly, it’s good to pause every once in a while and ask yourself, “Is my business life fueling my joy or robbing me of it?”

I regularly take clients through an exercise to help them focus their business endeavors around their “Zone of Genius” (as illustrated by Gay Hendricks in his excellent books).

Here’s how it works:

1. For the next two weeks, document everything you do for your business in 15-minute increments to capture all the “hats” you wear in your work life. (You can perform a similar exercise around your out-of-office activities as well.)

2. Once you have everything captured, begin categorizing your activities by asking several questions: Is this an activity/function only you can perform, or could someone else complete that task? Is this something you are good at or bad at? Do you enjoy it or dislike doing it?

3. Now, review the first categorization (can only you perform this task?) and start to chip away at all the activities that do not absolutely require your energy and attention to complete. These can be delegated.

4. Next, review your list through the Good At/Bad At – Love/Despise lens and create a 2×2 grid, where the columns are labeled Love/Despise and the rows are labeled Good At/Bad At. Categorize your activities according to where they fall against these measures. Offload EVERYTHING that falls into the Bad At/Despise quadrant first. Keep that which falls into the Good At/Love section.

If you can stay focused on those activities that only you can perform, love doing, and that fall solidly in your area of expertise, you will have created a business life that fuels your joy and contributes most effectively to your well-being and the well-being of everyone around you.

What are three items you can embrace more fully or remove from your list today? Drop us a line to let us know.