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The secret to a junk baron’s success

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in Leaders & Managers

The man who grew a junk-removal business into an $8 million enterprise within five years says there’s a secret behind his overwhelming success:

“Have a clear vision,” says Brian Scudamore, the founder of 1-800-Got-Junk.

“Know what your future looks like, feels like and acts like. ... Latch onto that picture as though it has already happened ... [Then] share it with your team so they can see it and do what it takes to achieve it.”

In other words, draw a picture of your goal.

One way he brings visions to life is through a “Vision Wall,” a high-profile wall at the company’s home office. Employees, as well as the CEO himself, submit their visions on the wall. A sign on the wall reads “Can You Imagine?”

A sampling of aspirations includes a company appearance on “Oprah,” which Scudamore made happen.

Marketing manager Andrea Baxter’s idea was “Can you imagine our brand appearing on Starbucks cups everywhere?” Though it seemed an impossible quest, Baxter kept her vision and put in the elbow grease to make it happen.

When the company finally made an appearance on a Starbucks cup--as part of the coffee maker’s “The Way I See It” series cups--it landed in the hands of 10 million customers.

How do you animate your goals? Can you picture them? As Scudamore says, “If you can’t see your vision come true, you’ll never have enough faith in it to achieve it.”

-- Adapted from Hard Goals, Mark Murphy.

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