Episode 336 – Ten Year Career with Jodie Cook

Jodie CookWhat kind of timescale guides your thinking? Do you focus on how great things will be when you make a killing selling your company decades from now, or do you prefer not to think beyond the end of the day? When it comes to business success, choosing your time horizon really matters. 

Jodie Cook completed her first start-up/exit cycle in 10 years, and she recommends it as a way of planning your strategy more purposefully: 10 years is ‘long enough to think long term… but also short enough to not waste time.’

She focuses her time equally purposefully at the daily level too, working in ‘blocks’ to ensure the work gets done effectively and that she protects time to train and to rest – REALLY rest – in her day. And of course she makes time to write, because that’s her way of processing everything. 

Make time for this. 



Jodie’s website: https://www.jodiecook.com/

Ten Year Career website: http://tenyearcareer.com/

Most Recommended Books site: https://mostrecommendedbooks.com/

Jodie on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jodie.cook_/

Alison on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bookstothesky_/

Alison on Twitter: https://twitter.com/bookstothesky

BizBoWriMo: https://alisonjones.lpages.co/bizbowrimo/

The 10-day Business Book Proposal Challenge January 2023: https://pi-q.learnworlds.com/course?courseid=proposal-challenge-jan-23

WriteBrained: A 28-day exploratory writing adventure: https://pi-q.learnworlds.com/course?courseid=writebrainedcourse

The Extraordinary Business Book Club on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1447064765612358/

Alison Jones: I’m here today with Jodie Cook, who is an entrepreneur, author, and athlete on a mission to see what she’s capable of and help others to do the same. She built and recently sold the marketing agency that she started aged 22. She writes books and articles on the topic of entrepreneurship, and she competes for Great Britain in power lifting.

Her books include Stop Acting Like You’re Going to Live Forever, Instagram Rules, which won the Sales and Marketing category at the Business Book Awards 2021, I seem to remember, and How to Raise Entrepreneurial Kids. And her latest book is called 10 Year Career: Reimagine business, design your life, fast track your freedom.

So welcome to the show Jodie, great to have you here.

Jodie Cook: Hey Alison, thank you so much for having me.

Alison Jones: Oh, it’s really, really good to see you. We’re going to really struggle to fit everything we want to talk about today into half an hour, I’ll tell you that. I want to get onto power lifting at some point. But let’s start with The 10 Year Career, because surely, Jodie, a career, that’s like a whole life trajectory, right?

Jodie Cook: Right, right. Wrong. Yes, I think that it doesn’t have to be, the reason I love 10 years and the reason the book’s called 10 Year Career is because I think using 10 years as a timeframe is long enough to think long term, because I think there are so many benefits to thinking long term, you create relationships with people rather than just trying to sell to them, and you think in a better way about business, but also short enough to not waste time. I feel like lots of business owners do waste time and I feel like 10 years is the perfect timeframe by which to operate and you can do a hell of a lot within a decade.

Alison Jones: I mean it is, it’s not an insubstantial period of time, is it? But you are in a sense, compressing what most people have traditionally thought of as a lifetime’s career. So just tell us a little bit about your kind of 10 year framework.

Jodie Cook: Yes, sure. So I started a business in 2011 when I was 22. I was fresh out of university and a graduate scheme, and I didn’t really know what I was doing. I was super green, super naive. I had a two word business plan that was: get clients.

Alison Jones: That kind of goes to the heart of it, doesn’t it?

Jodie Cook: Yes, and I started rocking up to business networking events and just standing up and saying in a squeaky brummy voice, ‘Hello, I’m a social media manager,’ and started trying to get clients that way. So, I mean, at the time, I probably looked about 12 and really, honestly didn’t know what I was doing at all.

But through sheer naivety, audacity and perseverance, I managed to start getting clients. I feel like once you get your first client, that’s the hardest bit over with, and then the second and the third and the fourth are kind of more straightforward from there. So I guess fast forward about three years, I had a team, I had a bunch of clients. We were doing lots of different work for different clients, and I was absolutely frazzled and I just really wanted to take a holiday, but I was very aware that I couldn’t because the entire business relied on me.

And so I affectionately refer to it as the Jodie Show because I was the main point of contact for every client. I was still doing prospecting, I was doing all the sales stuff, I was sending invoices, I was doing every single part of the business. And I thought, this is madness. It has to stop.

So I threw myself in the deep end, booked a trip to Australia. That was a five week trip, three months into the future. And I gave myself a deadline to sort this all out because there’s no way I could have really been in touch with the team in Australia because of the huge time difference. It would’ve made it super difficult. So that’s when I started sorting it out, making a plan and making my business not so reliant on me.

Alison Jones: And that’s the systematized bit, I guess, just talk us through what, how you kind of abstracted that into a process that other people can follow.

Jodie Cook: Yes, exactly from the book, so from The 10 Year Career, we’ve got the 10 year career framework and it’s a four stage framework. Execute, which is the first stage where you are crazy busy, saying yes to everything, seeing what sticks. This is the fun part. That’s the really, really cool, interesting part. Then, you move to Systemize and start systemizing your business. So it turns into this well-oiled machine that can run without you.

And then when you’ve got this well oiled machine, you can Scrutinize. And that’s where you can say, what do I want to do now? And there’s so many options at that stage because you could have a lifestyle business. You could travel while it runs in the background. You could go back into Execute and try and get your business to a new stage, or you could move to Exit, which is the fourth stage, which is what I did.

So, I do want to caveat this by saying when I was 22 and running a business, it didn’t happen consciously in all these stages, it only makes sense looking back, of course.

Alison Jones: You can only connect the dots backwards, always, yes.

Jodie Cook: And at the time I was just doing what anyone else was doing, bumbling along, vaguely doing what I thought was right at the time. But when I look back and when I’ve spoken to other entrepreneurs who have done the same thing, started, scaled and sold within 10 years, all their journeys seem to follow this four stage framework.

So I think it’s super useful for people to have going forward, and I kind of wish I’d had it at the start as well.

Alison Jones: And I love that point that actually you can loop back, you can go back into Execute, you can shift it on, you could launch a new business. It doesn’t have to kind of work in 10 years. But you make the point in the book and oh my goodness, I recognize this too, that most of us entrepreneurs tend to get stuck in Execute for perhaps longer than we might otherwise have liked, had we thought about this properly from the outset.

Jodie Cook: Execute is such an interesting phase because it is the most exciting and it is the one where it’s like, this is why we do it. Because often we like the work, we like what we do, we love our clients, we want to do the stuff, but I think we can get stuck because we can like being busy too much. We can like being needed too much and we can have this limiting belief that no one else can do what we can do in our business as well as us, and it’s often very not true.

And I know that for me, when I went from being a one man band to then hiring people, I had to differentiate between someone doing something different and someone doing something wrong, and just because they were doing it different, it does not mean it was wrong.

And I had to almost check myself and say, ‘No, it’s okay. There are going to be people that you bring in that take things in new directions. And that is fine because it’s required in order to grow past former roles that you’ve held within your own business.’

Alison Jones: It’s quite uncomfortable that. I mean, you must have identified lots of places in which people get stuck. So that’s clearly one, is that the Jodie Show, you know, it’s that I am my business and I can’t imagine it without me, that’s the place people get stuck and presumably the whole kind of just reimagining what they’re doing. As you say that the sort of the comfort of being busy.

What are the other classic places that people get stuck in their business?

Jodie Cook: Believing that only they can do the stuff, believing that they need to be working all the time, believing that they should have a business that then creates a life rather than having a life that is supported by a business. I think it’s, which do you put first? And I prefer putting life first and having business to support that.

And then another huge pitfall, of not only the Execute stage but all of them, is taking on board advice from very well meaning people that is so not right for that stage. So one example is if you are in the Scrutinize phase, it would probably be the wrong thing to do to head on down to networking events. It would probably be the wrong thing to do to get stuck in with your business on the ground.

And the reason why is because you’ve got people in place and you don’t want to undermine them and undermine what they’re doing and the hard work they’re putting in. But equally in the Execute phase, it would probably be the wrong thing to sit back and visualize and let the money flow and all that kind of stuff because it’s like, no, now’s really the time when you need to do the…

Alison Jones: …the ‘get clients’ moment.

Jodie Cook: That’s the ‘get clients’ moment.

I guess I feel like the framework’s super useful because as entrepreneurs we have progression plans in place for our team. Anyone that joins our company, we know what their next three months are going to look like. They get quarterly appraisals. We speak to them all the time. We know you do X by Y and you will get Z. But we don’t have that for ourselves.

And so I love at the start of of these episodes, how you say we want to make sense of complex worlds. And I think the world of entrepreneurship is so complex. It’s like we need some kind of framework that we can follow. We really are making it up as we go along and figuring it out as we go along.

So we need a framework that makes sense.

Alison Jones: And I love that you booked the trip to Australia to force yourself to do that, because the problem is that the days just go, don’t they? And I think putting those kind of non-negotiable deadlines, milestones in place is really smart. That’s somebody who really knows how they work.

Jodie Cook: I just wanted to go to Australia. But it was like, well, a key thing that I remember from that time is I booked the trip and someone in my team said, I’m worried about this because I think that lots of stuff could go wrong. So I said, I pulled up a chair. I said, Sit down, tell me all the things that could go wrong.

And I just got a fresh piece of paper and everything they said, I just wrote down. And then I kept going, Okay, what else? Okay, what else? And then, is that everything? Have you covered anything else? Maybe something else. Okay. Wrote them all down, there were probably 10 things. And then wrote something next to them that was like, well this is what I’ll put in place, or this is what I’ll do to make sure that if it does go wrong, we can sort it out.

And I mean, nothing went wrong. Maybe a few things did. Maybe a few things happened that I would’ve handled in a different way, but overall, it was so unbelievably worth it, and I’m just so happy that it happened.

Alison Jones: It’s a great sense of trust in your team as well, isn’t it? And it’s a great vote of understanding, for them to understand their own resilience and ability to cope with whatever life’s going through at them without Jodie in the room.

Jodie Cook: I just think that people are consistent and if you suspect that someone’s going to mess around, they’re going to do it whether you’re there or not, probably. And I’d rather know, because I mean I had such amazing people in my team who were so conscientious. They are in private, who they are in public, and I’d rather leave them to it.

I’d rather they develop the resourcefulness and the creativity to sort stuff out. And they want it to, they want to progress. They don’t want to be watched over. I think if someone’s going to mess around, great, you’ll find out faster, and then you can get rid of them and then you can proceed without them.

But maybe you won’t ever know if you’re around all the time.

Alison Jones: And this is a great illustration of, I’m rich reading Jim Collins’ Good to Great at the moment and his foundational principle is get the right people on the bus. Before you set the strategy, get the people on the bus, and then together you will figure out what you have to do. But if you haven’t got the right people on the bus, then it’s, no, you can have all the strategy, like, it isn’t going to work.

Jodie Cook: Yes, and you kind of need to, you kind of need the driver to go away to make sure that the people on the bus are going to behave themselves.

Alison Jones: Not just passengers.

Jodie Cook: Yes, because it’s easy to behave. It’s easy to kind of, I don’t know, always act how you think the boss wants you to act, but it’s really when they’re not there that you get tested and I’d rather know.

Alison Jones: That’s so interesting. You talked about life before, having a life that supports a business rather than the other way around. I think this is a great segue into power lifting, don’t you? Tell me, because you are the kind woman that sort of makes me think what have I done with my life? You know, there you are winning power lifting competitions and, you know, exiting successful businesses and all the rest of it, but how do those things work together for you?

Jodie Cook: I think the main thing that power lifting does is it creates boundaries for how I spend my time. Because going to the gym, training, it’s a non-negotiable and it takes up quite a lot of the week. I guess it’s like a part-time job. It takes up a lot of time. So I know I’m never, ever going to skip the gym. I just wouldn’t do it. Therefore, work has to stop at some point, and therefore it forces you to make the most of your work minutes available. I think with power lifting especially, if you’re not concentrating, if you’re thinking about that email you want to send or that product you want to do, like you’re going to get hurt, really badly.

So it’s not like you can do, you can’t do both at the same time.

Alison Jones: Got to be in your body, haven’t you? Not in your head.

Jodie Cook: Yes, and in that way it’s meditative and it’s like you’re not in your left brain at all. You’re completely right brain. You’re just immersed in what you’re doing. You’re finding flow, and therefore, yes, it is meditative and maybe it’s nice to see what I’m capable of in another field.

Alison Jones: I love that about bounding the time as well. Because you’re right, one of the curses for entrepreneurs is there are no boundaries with your time. Just, you know, you wake up, you reach for the laptop, having to carve out time in the day is a really, really good discipline. I love that.

Jodie Cook: Yes, I work fully in blocks now. I used to not do it, but now I make sure that there are blocks in place, they’re normally between 90 minutes and two hours, and that’s when I know what I’m going to do and I’m going to smash the work stuff, and then I’m going to put the laptop away and then focus on something else. Because something I decided to get good at recently was just resting really well because we are so good at working really well and the athletic among us are good at training really well.

But it’s like, I want to get so good at doing nothing that this becomes a superpower at the same time. So, but it has to be intentional.

Alison Jones: Yes, what does that look like? What does resting well look like for you?

Jodie Cook: I think resting well looks like airplane mode on the phone. Whoever is around you, knowing that you are in rest mode, not filling that rest time with admin and chores because going to town looking for the perfect, I don’t know, new mascara is not resting, it’s just running errands. So outsourcing as much of that stuff as possible and just doing something that is, like for me it’s going for a walk, it’s going for food, it’s having chats about random stuff. It’s kind of opening my eyes and speaking to new people and going to new places and getting new influences in.

Alison Jones: Filling your tank…

Jodie Cook: Yes, yes, I think so.

Alison Jones: …and you’ve written as well about entrepreneurial kids, which I think is really interesting. I mean, you know, you were 22 when you started your business. It wasn’t that far away from teenage years. What drove you to think, actually we need to take this message about work and play down to the next generation as well?

Jodie Cook: It was exactly that experience of starting a business at 22 and then speaking to my friends who I’d been to school with and no one wanted to start a business. They just wanted to get jobs and they really, really wanted to get jobs and I just could not understand it because I was like, it’s kind of easy to get a job. Like we’ve all been waitresses, we all know how the job market goes. We can just get a job at any point.

Why don’t we start a business and make getting a job our plan B or C or D or probably even further down the line than that? And they just didn’t want to do it. And when looking into why they didn’t, it was because unless you have an entrepreneurial role model in your childhood, you probably don’t think that starting a business is something that you could do.

And I was very lucky to have an entrepreneurial role model because my mum’s been self-employed since I was about 15. So I’ve just been really familiar with business language, so invoicing, networking, clients, it’s just normal. So it didn’t feel like that big a leap for me, whereas I know it did for other people.

So how How To Raise Entrepreneurial Kids came about was, there’s a series of children’s books that my husband and I wrote called Clever Tykes that are designed to introduce kids to entrepreneurial role models. And we chatted about it, we’re on a plane, we thought, oh, this would be fun to create a series of kids’ books. How hard can it be?

Turns out it’s really blooming hard, but…

Alison Jones: Really hard writing for kids. My goodness. Yes.

Jodie Cook: …but we managed to do it. And then as a result of that, I sent out a HARO, so Help A Reporter Out is a website that helps writers find sources. And I sent it out with two questions. One was, how are you raising entrepreneurial kids? And another was how were you raised to be entrepreneurial?

Because I just had this idea that we could find entrepreneurs. We could talk about their childhoods, and we could kind of reverse engineer this and create the entrepreneurs of the future. And I thought I might get three responses and I could write a blog post and I got 400 or it might have even been 500.

It was so many, and there were people putting so much detail into everything that they wanted to say. They were thanking grandparents. They were recounting very specific incidences. And I just thought, well, this is a book.

So then joined up with Daniel Priestley, because I’m not a parent, but I was kind of the kid in the story. But he’s got three kids all under the age of six and was also raised to be entrepreneurial. So thought that he’d be a really good person to write the book with. I left Daniel a WhatsApp voice note to pitch him the idea and he got straight back to me to say, yes, absolutely, what do you need from me? And then we made the book and it’s full of stories, case studies.

We’ve put a few very famous entrepreneurs and stories from their childhoods in there. And it’s got a bunch of different actionables for parents.

Alison Jones: Yes, it’s brilliant and you know, I can speak to that as not having been brought up entrepreneurially and it taking me until 45 to set up my own business and my son, who just assumes that he’ll set up his own business because that’s what you do. So it’s really interesting.

Jodie Cook: And it backs up the 10 year career as well because you could start your 10 year career at any point.

Alison Jones: So as well as the entrepreneurial stuff, the power lifting, the athletic stuff and all the rest of it you write and you write quite prolifically. Why? What does that do for you?

Jodie Cook: Writing is my way of processing everything. It’s a way of taking all the mess in my head that comes from running a business and just turning it into words on the page that make sense. Maybe they don’t make sense at first, but after editing they make sense. And so, all my writing really started off as journal entries and then through a series of fortunate events, I landed a contributor slot on Forbes, and that’s when I started turning those journal entries into articles that would help entrepreneurs.

And really they were advice, there were pieces of advice to a former version of me.

Alison Jones: Yes.

Jodie Cook: And I was a bit scared putting them out there, but then they started to resonate and I would get feedback from people who would say, it feels like you are in my head, it feels like you are talking exactly to me. And I think that’s just because we all have the same five problems and it’s just the way I was answering those problems as if it was a former version of me. Something else I always think about is the law of least effort. And so this doesn’t mean that you don’t put in effort. It means you find what feels effortless. And I really believe that everyone has their way of producing effortlessly, and if you are listening to this thinking that you don’t, you just haven’t found it yet.

For some people it’s talking, for some people it’s asking questions, for others it’s answering questions, and then for some it’s writing, talking on camera, singing, playing the piano, whatever it is, everyone has their way of doing this. And so I think mine is writing, so it’s something where I can sit down at my laptop or at a piece of paper and just do it for hours on end and I get into flow and I feel like when everyone finds their law of least effort way of creating, that’s what they should do.

Alison Jones: I love that. And what is interesting about that is the way that you write instinctively feels quite pressure free. You talk about finding flow. I think an awful lot of people when they sit down to write, they get page fright because…

Jodie Cook: Page fright, yes, yes.

Alison Jones: …they are performing and people, and you know, you’re writing is that the right word and have I got the punctuation right? And does this even make sense, you know? And we sort of second guess ourselves.. a lot of people second guess themselves all the time, but you seemed to have stumbled across that absolute sort of freedom of, I am writing primarily for me, and I’ll tidy it up afterwards and see if there’s anything here for other people.

But just getting started is the thing, isn’t it?

Jodie Cook: Maybe it doesn’t feel like there’s much pressure because I am writing to a former version of myself, and I think a good formula that I think of is ‘do cool stuff and then teach other people how to do the same cool stuff’. So I’m not really talking about anything that I don’t really know about. And I’m not saying that I know about it for everyone, but I know about it for someone who’s in my specific situation and there are probably loads of us.

So yes, I just don’t think, I try not to take myself so seriously that I would get page fright. I’m reading a book at the moment called No Self, No Problem and he said something amazing about stress, that stress is like a symptom of taking things that aren’t real far too seriously.

Alison Jones: Yes.

Jodie Cook: And I love it.

Alison Jones: Great way putting it, yes.

But, you say you write about things that you know, but there’s knowing and there’s knowing, isn’t it? There’s knowing that sort of happens instinctively, but when you put it on the page, there’s a knowing that happens in a more structured, articulated way.

So that framework, for example, for your 10 year plan, you were saying, as you were living it, you had no idea that you were in Execute phase and there was going to be a Scrutinize phase. It’s only, I think, afterwards when you’re processing it on the page that that framework which can then be so useful for other people emerges.

So I think it’s a progression of knowing, isn’t it?

Jodie Cook: Yes, I think you have to get really good at spotting patterns and maybe, although I’ve not actually thought about this before, but maybe that comes from having so much time spent not working and lifting or relaxing real good. It’s like your mind is focused on other stuff. So your default mode network is finding those patterns, which then means that when you do sit down at the page, you can articulate things in a way that makes sense, because it does make sense by now.

I don’t think it would at first. I don’t think the 10 year career would’ve made sense back in 2011 looking forward. But now that the patterns have been spotted, it kind of does.

Alison Jones: And I’m sure you’re right. I run, I remember Mark Zuckerberg has recently said he stopped running because it was too much time to think.

Jodie Cook: Oh wow.

Alison Jones: That was really interesting. And I do think when I run actually, but I think in a different way and it’s much less pressured, it’s much more spacious and I come back with different perspectives and a healthier approach to the stuff in front of me. So I think you’re right about finding space to help you think better when you get back to your desk.

Jodie Cook: It’s so interesting because I think lots of people, do you wear, you don’t have music when you run?

Alison Jones: No, absolutely not. No.

Jodie Cook: But I think so many people are scared of the void.

Alison Jones: Yes.

Jodie Cook: I was thinking about this the other day when someone was talking about how, oh, it was someone I met in the gym and he was an ex-pro footballer. He played for a long, long time and then he had an injury, which meant he had to stop. And I said, How was it just stopping? And he said it was absolutely fine because I had something to go onto but lots of my friends, it messed them up when they had to stop because they didn’t have anything. So they just went a bit crazy.

So, why is it that we have to have something to move onto? Why can’t we just sit there with the void? Because no one likes it. I didn’t like it when I sold my business. It was like, ah, this is a strange space. But then getting really good at it with something like running, you could then apply it to different parts of your life and then you’re probably fine just sitting alone in a dark room thinking.

And you’re not scared of your own thoughts like our mate Zuckerberg.

Alison Jones: Yes, it is amazing how many people can’t just sit with their own thoughts. It’s a good discipline. I think it gets easier as you get older.

Jodie Cook: Mm-hmm.

Yes, I think it could be a superpower,

Alison Jones: Yes, well, certainly in today’s world where people just reach for TikTok, if they’ve got a sort of second to wait. Anyway I’m not going to rant about my kids and tech and screens, I’m not.

I want to find out your best tip, Jodie, for, and frankly, you can just take it from anything we talked about, or anything we haven’t, you know, you’ve got such a breadth of life. So if somebody’s listening to this, what would be the one thing that you’d want them to take away?

Jodie Cook: For a first time business book author, or for anyone in any field?

Alison Jones: I wasn’t going to constrain it too much, but yes, I mean, primarily you’re talking to business book authors, who’ve maybe not done this before.

Jodie Cook: Okay, so well, this might apply to other areas of life as well, but specifically for a business book author or an aspiring business book author, I would say get the concept nailed before you barrel forward with the rest of the book. I think that retrospectively creating a title and a subtitle isn’t the way to go.

I feel like it should be 80% of the time spent really honing that, having it in your head, feeling like you know the book really well, even before you’ve written it, and then kind of exploding all your thoughts onto the page in line with that theme.

Alison Jones: Concept driven.

Jodie Cook: Yes, definitely because I think that strong concept could take the book so far. And the last thing you want is to have all your stories in there, all the whole book written, and then to be deciding a title that fits.

Alison Jones: You’d be surprised how often that happens.

Jodie Cook: I think it probably could work if someone was skilled enough at it, but I think why risk it? You might as well get it right first.

Alison Jones: Absolutely. And actually the marketing messages, the structure of the book, everything falls out of that strong concept. That’s why we do concept reviews, as the sort of first stage of publishing. Yes, brilliant.

And if people want to find… oh, I was going to ask your recommendation. I forgot your recommendation. I always ask people, as you know, to recommend a business book.

It doesn’t have to be a business book, but what would you recommend to people listening?

Jodie Cook: So at the moment, I would recommend a book that was recommended to me, I’m going to use the same word a lot of times in the next sentence. But there’s a website called Most Recommended Books that was recommended to me by someone else, and it’s been created by a very cool guy called Richard. And he put together a list of the top books that billionaires recommend, and that’s because he’s been scouring the internet, working out when people recommend books, adding them to his site, and he geeks out on the numbers.

And so he put together the ones that are in the order of most recommended. And so number one, Sapiens, number two is Principles by Ray Dalio. So I’d already read Sapiens so I decided to give Principles a go and it’s so good. So it’s split into three sections. Have you read it?

Alison Jones: Yes I have, yes, it’s really good, isn’t it? And there’s a good, a really good example of somebody doing the cool stuff and then writing about it and extracting stuff.

Jodie Cook: It’s just fantastic. And it’s in three parts. He says at the start, you can skip the first part if you want and go straight into the principles, but I’m so happy I read the first third because he’s so flipping incredible. It makes you think, Wow, how has he done all this stuff? And then he puts in place all the life principles that he shares really openly and then he recommends that you do it too. So the last third is about work principles, which he also says you can skip if you want, and it’s up to you whether you’re focused more on life or work right now. But it’s just fantastic. And I think taking that book and then writing your own principles is such a great practice.

And he also says in the book that he feels sad that lots of the great business leaders didn’t write their principles down because he would’ve loved to have known what Steve Jobs had as his principles. So it feels like a really good… well, it’s a great book to read, and also it feels like a really good exercise to do.

Alison Jones: It’s a great thing to do for yourself, and it’s also a really great thing to do for your team, which takes us right back to that, you know, getting the right people on the bus and being confident that as long as you’ve got the principles in place, in a sense you can have more confidence in letting people use the method they want to get to the outcome because you know that the principles are shared and sound.

Jodie Cook: Yes, I think it’s probably good for the systemized phase of the 10 year career framework as well, because if you’ve got those principles and you know, this is how we act. If you know that, you’ve got a policy of the client is always right or if you can solve a problem that makes a client happy and you can sort it out, then do. They’re the different principles that could underpin your entire business.

And the more you have principles running the show, the more you don’t need to be running the show so it frees you up at the same time.

Alison Jones: There you go, we’ve just linked it beautifully back into the framework. Wonderful.

And if people want to find out more about you, Jodie, more about all your books and the work that you do, where should they go?

Jodie Cook: They should go to jodiecook.com, so it’s J O D I E C O O K, and then I’m on all the social media, so if you search Jodie Cook, you’ll be able to find me and say, Hey, and then everything about 10 Year Career is at tenyearcareer.com. There is actually a quiz at quiz.tenyearcareer.com, which is where you can find out where in your 10 year career you are and what you need to do next.

Alison Jones: Brilliant. I’ll put those links up on the show notes at extraordinarybusinessbooks.com along with the transcript of this conversation. Thank you so much for your time today. It’s been absolutely fascinating.

Jodie Cook: Thank you, Alison. Amazing to be here.

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