Running a business can be discouraging, overwhelming, and lonely. Everything looks good from the outside, but on the inside, owners are struggling to take their business to the next level while still living their best life. What they need is a holistic strategy for running a stable company that makes money and allows them to sleep well at night.
This might seem like a fairy tale, but it’s not. After years of research and honing their strategies, Kathryn and Michael Redman have developed a framework that offers business owners the dream with the means of implementation. There are no magic pills or silver bullets in their new book, Fulfilled: The Passion & Provision Strategy for Building a Business with Profit, Purpose & Legacy—just the promise of transformation with hard work and patience.
Fulfilled unpacks the six core areas of business and offers a clear plan for overcoming the challenges business owners face, all with the aim of helping them build a Passion and Provision company. I recently sat down with Kathryn and Michael to learn what inspired them to write the book, their favorite idea they share with readers, and how that idea has impacted their lives.
What happened that made you decide to write the book? What was the exact moment when you realized these ideas needed to get out there?
We were called to write the book for a long time, but there was a catalyst moment on a plane ride a handful of years ago when I read The Coming Jobs War by Jim Clifton, who was the CEO of Gallup at the time. What I learned from that book was that, more than anything else, when people around the world were asked what they wanted, the answer was “a good job.”
I wanted to be able to provide my employees with meaningful work. I knew personally what it was like to not have a “good” job, and I didn’t want that for myself or for my employees. I wanted to give them work that was fulfilling, stimulating, satisfying and provided a good wage.
After a tumultuous few years, we were finally close to achieving that level of satisfaction and success. But Clifton’s book made me realize that I wanted to do more. How could I help other business leaders provide their employees with satisfying work?
I began sketching out a vision of a model that would help equip other business leaders to develop thriving companies, ones that could achieve their financial potential while still providing leaders with a sense of purpose and meaning. I began noting strategies that could empower leaders to run their businesses smoothly, in a way that kept their stress down and produced the kind of fulfillment we all long for. That process was where the idea for the book was born.
What’s your favorite specific, actionable idea in the book?
It’s the importance of vision, which consists of three parts: clear, complete, and compelling. Without a vision that checks these three boxes, your company will always struggle to reach its potential. The business may languish in mediocrity, which is almost worse than failure.
People perish for lack of vision and so do companies.
What’s a story of how you’ve applied that idea in your own life? What has this lesson done for you?
Thanks to our vision, we’ve enjoyed eighteen years of business success, grown a seven-figure company, survived the Great Recession, and are doing quite well during the COVID-19 global pandemic. We’ve also been happily married for twenty-seven years.
We have a great relationship with my mother, who works for us part-time, and our daughter, who is 24 years and has been out of college for three years. She’s our only child and she also works for the company—not because we made her, but because she chose to work here.
We sent her away to college, gave her lots of opportunities, encouraged her to do anything else, and then she came back to us after graduating and asked, “Would you be willing to hire me?”
The fact that we’ve enjoyed a strong marriage for almost three decades, and we have great relationships with two of our family members who work with us is proof that what we’re doing is working. We’ve also taught other companies along the way, and it’s worked for them, too.
For more advice on building a Passion and Provision company, you can find Fulfilled: The Passion & Provision Strategy for Building a Business with Profit, Purpose & Legacy on Amazon.