Getting Your Ducks In a Row and The Power of Zero

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Duck herders on Keramas Beach, Bali Duck herders on Keramas Beach, Bali

Setting the theme 'Get your ducks in a row'

I was on a trip to Bali recently with a group of people at a business development seminar. On an early morning beach walk we came across some duck herders. It was an incredible sight for me. I have never before seen ducks at the beach, there were literally hundreds of them being herded on the waters edge. The herders had complete control, there was a lead herder and two more at the back. The only time the ducks moved out of line was when one of the ladies in our group stood in their way to take a photo. The ducks just waited patiently for her to move, then continued in line.

I had heard the expression 'getting your ducks in row' before but this made me think about what it meant.

So, I Googled it.


I like this statement and it makes a lot of sense to me and what my organisation does. We help businesses get organised. Actually, the reason I thought to write this article was because I heard Tracy, my sales manager say to a prospective client on the phone 'OK, I understand you’re getting your ducks in a row'. Bam! There it was, exactly what we do.

We do the things that you don’t have time to do or don’t want to do. Most existing business people know exactly what needs to be done when it comes to managing their financials, but they struggle to get to it.

Things like:

  1. Chasing up debtors
  2. Doing the paperwork
  3. Creating businesses documents and contracts
  4. Managing the budget.

During the seminar, I realised there were a lot of people who don’t know what to do or where to start. I found myself naturally helping them set up budgets and become clear on the costs needed to run their businesses and promotion plans. They had a rough idea but it was all in their head and not on paper where they could make sense of it.

I talked to them about budgeting for wealth building and making sure they have a purpose for their money.

The Power of Zero

My mentor Roger Hamilton talks about the ‘Power of Zero’ and how using this mindset helps to build wealth. The power of zero works by finding your comfort zone in the amount of money you can deal with or comfortably lose. Let's say you did a job for a client who didn't pay. What would be your level of discomfort in the amount you lost from the deal? If you are earning $10 000 your discomfort may be $1000 that would hurt you to lose. However, if you were earning $100 000 your discomfort might be $10 000 and if you were earning $1 000 000 your discomfort would climb up to $100 000. Building wealth is about adding zeros, both to your mindset and your budget. 
The problem for most people is they don’t have a system for building wealth. They usually have a plan to run their business, but not to build their savings or increase their net worth.
What is important is to do what is important first. That is to make sure you have someone helping you do your paperwork, chasing debtors and organising the day to day operations, while you work on increasing your wealth and savings.

ducks in row

Our own wooden duck as a reminder.

When we got back to the resort, 'getting your ducks in a row' soon became the theme for our seminar, which truly made sense. We were there creating promotion plans for our businesses; keeping everything in line and going in the right direction was going to be super important.

At the end of the seminar one of the participants gave us delegates a wooden duck as a reminder to keep to the theme.


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