The De-Bottleneck Challenge: Removing Myself from Business Operations in 72 Hours

In this post I share why and how I'm

The De-Bottleneck Challenge: Removing Myself from Business Operations in 72 Hours

Eight months ago, I became a human dad (I've been a dog dad for a couple years, just to clarify in case Oreo reads this ;) as Anamaria and I welcomed Noah Vicente, the cutest, most amazing baby boy in the world into our life:

He has been the biggest blessing of my life. Despite him being unable to speak, he has already taught me so much about life. He amazes me every day and I'm so grateful.

More on Noah and fatherhood soon, but in this post I want to specifically talk about the delicate balance of being a new dad and a business owner.

Balancing Business and Fatherhood

To be very honest, running a business while being a babydaddy has been challenging, overwhelming and stressful AF at times.

I know I am living through some of the most important times of Noah's life and want to be fully present with him, but I also want to provide him with the best life possible.

When things are not fully automated and delegated, I get stressed that I'm not earning or doing enough to give him that life, hence my dilemma.

Currently, my primary business focus is producing custom websites and go to market campaigns for B2B firms on LinkedIn and email. Of course, I also am responsible for engaging and growing my Facebook group, email list and brand as a whole.

In addition, I'm supporting my wife with our vacation rental property management business on AirBnB (if you're ever in Medellín, come stay with us!) that currently has about 20 listings and an additional 20 going live within the next couple months.

Since Noah was born, it's been challenging to get momentum and I find myself getting overwhelmed a lot more easily trying to balance my responsibilities as a father and business owner.

I will breakdown the daily operations of these businesses shortly, but before I do I want to get into why replacing myself is a non-negotiable.

Why Replacing Myself is No Longer Optional

Today, I am about 60% replaced from my business operations thanks to systems and great talent that I have been developing for years.

Also, my wife handles the AirBnB business and I'm just there to support her with systems and what not.

However, since having Noah enter my life, I've realized that 60% doesn't cut it. I need to be 100% fully replaced. Why? Because anything less than 100% means:

  • I will have less energy
  • I will continue to be overwhelmed easily
  • I will continue to be the central bottleneck to my growth
  • I will continue to think and stress about my business 24/7/365
  • I will continue to fail to achieve time freedom and peace of mind
  • I will continue to struggle with being fully present with Noah and Anamaria

On the flip side, replacing myself 100% means I can enjoy the following:

  • I can be fully present
  • I will have more energy
  • I can grow more predictably
  • I can earn more without working more
  • I can spend my time how I want guilt-free
  • I can have complete and total peace of mind

Since I read The Four Hour Workweek back in 2014, I have been obsessed with achieving time freedom using automation and delegation.

I soon discovered that the 4 hour workweek is one of those things everybody knows about and wants but few ever actually achieve. I was determined to live it.

I hired my first virtual assistant around 2016 and since then have hired hundreds of different project-based contractors and dozens of employees.

Thirteen months after I quit my 9 to 5 job in 2016, I was able to grow my one-man design agency to 6-figures while being replaced myself from daily operations.

This was a huge milestone for me because I finally was able to live the ever-elusive 4 hour workweek through leverage via systems, delegation and automation.

I used my newfound time freedom to develop a new, more leveraged income stream (an agency incubator and accelerator program) that has since produced multiple 6-figures in business.

Since then, I have helped dozens of clients to achieve similar results. Meanwhile, I continued to build out and experiment with the following offers and business models:

  • live challenges
  • memberships
  • accelerators
  • pay per lead marketing
  • coaching programs

Why so many different offers? To be very honest, part of this was due to my ADHD.

The other part of this was due to my lack of alignment and finding a model that aligned with my vision for life.

For years, I thought I wanted to build a huge business with a big team. Then I tried it and hated almost every second of it.

Through this experience, I realized that my peace of mind is my number one value. This is my north star for my business but more importantly, my life.

Today, I am excited to finally say that I have determined the exact type of business model that suits me... one that is simple, fulfilling and automated.

At the end of last year, I made a challenge to myself to be 100% removed from my business before the new year.

While I made great progress, I didn't complete the challenge.

So now, I'm using the turn of the year and turning to public accountability to ratchet up the stakes and finally de-bottleneck myself once and for all.

My Live Challenge to Replace Myself From Operations in 72 Hours

After being fed up with the constant overhwelm I was facing, I decided to solve my issue once and for all how I typically solve all my problems: a combo of meditation and thinking time.

My Current State and Desired State

First, I wanted to really my the problem and my desired outcome in as much detail as possible.

So I sat down, identified my objective (make operations autonomous), defined my current state in detail and then defined my desired state in detail.

This is the magical framework to achieving anything you want in life. This is what I came up with:

This helped me achieve crystal clarity on my current state and core problem. Overwhelm was my main symptom and the cause of this was low leverage.

This led me to my next step, creating my plan of action.

My Plan of Action

After I got clarity on my current state and desired state, it was time to bridge the gap by taking action.

I reviewed my desired state and sub-tasks, then created a plan of action, grouped by core projects and sub-tasks. This is what I came up with:

To summarize, my high level plan of action to overcome overwhelm, create massive leverage and achieve crystal clarity was as follows:

  1. Create a 90 Day Calendar with Key Objectives, Projects and Events
  2. Document My Brand Guide and Operating System
  3. Build My Automated Retention and Acquisition Funnel
  4. Build My Content and Traffic Generation System
  5. Create a Central Dashboard to Track Performance
  6. Setup Capture Box System to Capture, Process and Prioritize My Ideas

Once I had defined my plan, I had my assistant add and schedule these tasks into my project management application.

Now keep in mind, there are a few pre-requisites to be able to complete these steps such as the following:

  • A clear life vision
  • A clear brand vision
  • A clear customer journey
  • Product and/or services to sell
  • A reliable tech stack and team to support

My Challenge Agenda

My challenge officially starts today, January 12, 2024 meaning that I have the weekend until midnight on January 15, 2024 to complete the challenge.

I'll be publicly livestreaming my challenge inside my Facebook community and sharing emails updates to share live progress as I go.

I'll be completing these tasks myself with the help of my small team and assistant Anand.

If you want to follow along, join my Facebook group and enter your email to get updates as I go!

I will share links to the livestream and assets as I produce them inside this blog post. Here's my rough agenda for the next 72 hours:

Friday, January 12 Focus:

My focus is the following:

  • Create a 90 Day Calendar with Key Objectives, Projects and Events
  • Document My Brand Guide and Operating System

Saturday, January 13 Focus:

My focus is the following:

  • Build My Automated Retention and Acquisition Funnel
  • Build My Content and Traffic Generation System

Sunday, January 14 Focus:

  • Create a Central Dashboard to Track Performance
  • Setup Capture Box System to Capture, Process and Prioritize My Ideas

Check back for daily updates and please wish me luck! Yeeeee boi