What You Can Learn from Aaron Ross’s 25 Hour Workweek

By Jennifer Bi

You may have heard of Aaron Ross before. He’s the face behind Predictable Revenue, an award winning bestseller that details “Cold Calling 2.0” and other sales strategies that brought over 100 million in additional revenue for Salesforce.com.

Behind the man who’s created the “sales bible” that’s resonated with sales reps and managers for 5 years and running, is a full family of 12 children. If you peruse business blogs in your downtime or scroll through Linkedin posts on your commute, you may have noticed that Aaron is killer at spreading his gospel. Just read his interviews on Sales Hacker, the Salesforce Blog, and the Hirevue Blog.

Now, Aaron’s next venture is revolutionizing the way businesses tackle growth, so I sat down with Aaron to get his productivity secrets as a family man juggling a full house while running a thriving business.

His top secret? A 25-hour workweek.

SIQ: Let’s cut to the chase. You’re an author, a businessman, a coach, a speaker, and also a father and husband. How do you manage to fit everything into a 25 hours a week? Do you have any tricks up your sleeve?

AR: People often focus on productivity hacks and tips that speed up your work process or automate everything to run in zero time. But I want to put a spotlight on working slowly as a time saver.

There are parts of my work that I can do at lightning speed. I put a draft of predictable revenue together in just three days. But the concepts I explained in the book and the strategies I re-imagined for sales were built over years and years of experience.

It starts with a big question such as: What does it take a business to grow? The question I tackle in my most recent book. But that isn’t a question that can be answered easily with life hacks.

I wrote the draft for predictable revenue in only 3 days, but I had been thinking of the strategies for years.

My best advice would be to dedicate time to the big questions you’re tackling, whatever it may be. And think of ways to cut down on everything else, like emptying your inbox or planning an event. Make your plan for working fast and working slow.

And most importantly, find the motivation that will drive you, because without a source of motivation, you’re not going to have the fuel to fit 40 hours into 25.

SIQ: Explain that a bit more. If motivation is a big factor to creating the 25 hour work week, what was the motivation for you when building Predictable Revenue? What inspired you to go out on your own and start a business?

AR: 6 years ago, I was a single guy and making a single guy income and I was content. But having kids and building a family changed my perspective entirely. I wasn’t a single guy with a single income, I was a married guy with a single guy income that needed to support a family, and that inspired me to find ways to push myself and make more money.

Once I needed to scale my income as my family grew, I began teaching companies to scale their revenue.

The real key is forced motivation, not just self-driven motivation — which I consider optional motivation. Starting my family was the impetus I needed to re-think my career and build a source of revenue that I could scale as my family grew. The result was Predictable Revenue and From Impossible to Inevitable.

SIQ: Many working professionals are aiming to quit their job to pursue their personal passions, which is a self-driven source of motivation. What would you say to them about “forced motivation”?

AR: I’m a firm believer in self-drive and personal passions, but for me personally, that “aha moment” never came. Sometimes you get stuck in a spot where you’re waiting to find that one thing that will be your life’s passion and then your career will rocketship out of this world. But what if that moment doesn’t come?

If you feel the same way, I recommend finding a firm source of motivation for you, and don’t expect yourself to suddenly acquire an endless appetite for work. Discover and find things that provide forced motivation for you, rather than only seeking fleeting sources of motivation.

Sometimes you need to be forced to be productive. It won’t always come naturally.

Most people believe in the idea of their “dream job,” where in the unforeseen future, they’ll find that one thing that makes them passionate beyond all else. That may be true for some, but waiting for it might be your downfall. Having a family that needed my support kicked me into really finding new ways to generate revenue and produce work at a level that I was never expected to reach previously.

Originally published at www.salesforceiq.com.