Crippled CEO Blog #169:
You may not realize it, but both your eyes have a natural blind spot, or scotoma. Everyone has them. They’re normal and you probably don’t notice them.
Your retina, which is a thin layer of neural tissue at the back of your eye, is made up of tiny, light-detecting cells called photoreceptors. When light lands on your retina, it sends electrical bursts through your optic nerve to your brain. Your brain turns the signals into a picture.
The spot where your optic nerve connects to your retina has no light-sensitive cells, so you can’t see anything there. That’s your blind spot.
It is honestly not the best design, and many vision experts agree that they would have done it differently if they were consulted.
If you don’t believe me that you have a blind spot, or you just want to prove it to yourself, it is easy to do.
To find your right eye’s blind spot:
- Close your left eye.
- Hold your left thumb out in front of you, with your arm straight.
- Look at your left thumb with your right eye.
- With your left eye still closed, hold up your right thumb.
- Place your right thumb next to your left thumb.
- Keep looking at your left thumb.
- Slowly move your right thumb to the right while looking at your left thumb.
- When your right thumb disappears, you found your right eye’s blind spot.
To find the blind spot for your left eye, just switch eyes and thumbs.
So, now you know that you are constantly living with this blind spot that you possibly had no idea about. Every moment you’re awake and looking around, you are missing stuff that you think you are seeing.
This happens in life and business, as well. We think we have a clear picture of what’s going on, but the reality is, we all have blind spots, and the scariest possibility is that we don’t even know about them.
Just like with your optical scotoma (blind spot), you’re never going to get rid of all of your business scotomas, but you CAN reduce them.
There are two main ways to heal some of your blind spots.
The first is quality data and reporting. The most basic and necessary version of this is financial reporting. Whether you do it yourself or you get help from a bookkeeping service, having up-to-date financial reports for your business is going to eliminate so many blind spots. There is so much that you don’t know you don’t know if you’re not doing proper accounting and seeing your profit and loss and balance sheet statements.
Beyond that, a CRM, customer relationship management, tool can help you track other metrics that don’t fall into financial reporting. How many phone calls or leads you get, how many of those turn into quotes, what percentage of quotes turn into jobs, how long that process takes, the average size and profitability of each job, how those things change over time and compared to previous periods, and so much more. Just like with the financial statements, if you’re not doing this, you really don’t have any idea what you don’t know about. It is a massive blindspot.
The second big way to reduce blind spots, besides analytics and reporting, is through customer and employee feedback. The people you sell to and the folks on the front lines of your business have invaluable information, and if you’re not proactively trying to solicit that information, you’re missing out in a huge way. You might get some feedback from customers and employees without asking, but the amount opens up like a flood gate when you go out of your way to ask in a consistent, systematized way. You will be shocked by what you learn.
Those are the two big ways to get rid of some blind spots, but there is a third, bonus method that I think is worth mentioning, also. Self improvement and education. Constantly learning as much as you can from books/audiobooks, podcasts, YouTube videos, mentors, etc., can open your eyes and make you see things you just missed entirely before.
No matter how many blind spots you get rid of, the truth is that you’re never going to eliminate all of them completely. Being cognizant of this, staying humble, and being open to the fact that you’re likely missing things will go a long way towards mitigating the negative impact they can have on your life and business.
(Do you know who got something in her eye and had a blind spot last night? Your mom. Your mom also gets a text from me every Sunday with a link to the latest blog post. Send a text to 561-726-1567 with the word CRIP as the message to get a link to the blog as soon as it’s up.
Did you know that I have a YouTube channel now? I do! I am putting up two videos every single week. Go search for Crippled CEO and you’ll find me. I would appreciate it if you subscribed.)