The Power of Reverse Engineering

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If you’re like me, there’s probably been a moment where you were sitting at your 9-5 office job thinking of how you could make more money, or lose more weight, or buy your dream car. It’s easy to but those big goals on the back burner because hey, life is busy, and I don’t have the resources or the time to make those things happen. But, what if there was a different approach to making those big dreams attainable? The answer is reverse engineering!

By definition, here’s what it means to “reverse engineer” something:

to study or analyze (a device, as a microchip for computers) in order to learn details of design, construction, and operation, perhaps to produce a copy or an improved version.

Reverse Engineering – dictionary.com

This term, in a formal setting, is used for computer engineering, but can easily be applied to any skillset you’re looking to master. Typically, goals are set and we take steps to master those goals, but I’ve found it to be more efficient to set goals and reverse engineer those goals to achieve specific results.

So how exactly does that work?

Create a Specific, Measurable, and Attainable Goal

When it comes to being productive in reaching goals I set for myself (in business, life, or just… well, anything) I find that I am more successful if I physically put pen to paper and write down the goal. I’ve learned that sometimes what might look like a one-year goal can be easier to achieve if I break it down into something simpler, more specific, measurable, and attainable. By doing this, I celebrate the little victories along the way and reduce the chances of burnout trying to grasp at every opportunity to reach that big one-year goal.

One-Year Goal:

I want to generate an annual 6-figure revenue to provide for my family.

Break it Down

Here’s where reverse engineering comes into play: take your ultimate goal and ask yourself, “what steps can I take to make this happen?” If it’s a one-year goal find a clean sheet of paper and do a complete brain dump as follows:

Answer these questions:

  • Based on this one-year goal, what can I accomplish to reach the goal this year?
  • What can I accomplish this month to reach my goal this year?
  • What can I accomplish each week to reach my goal for this month?
  • What can I accomplish each day to reach my goal for this week?

Since we’re using an “annual 6-figure revenue” goal for this example, let’s talk specifics in regards to this goal.

  • I want to make $100,000 each year
  • Therefore, I must make $8,333 each month ($100,000 per year ÷ 12 months per year = $8,333 per month)
  • Which then translates to making $2,083 per week ($8,333 per month ÷ 4 weeks per month = $2,083)
  • Let’s break it down even more… that would mean I must make $297 per day ($2,083 per week ÷ 7 days per week = $297 per day)

Now that we have the specifics, it’s easier to attain our ultimate goal! Now you have to ask yourself, “What can I do to generate $297 per day?” Here’s a few examples:

  • Sell a $300 service once (online courses, freelance work, tasks on UpWork, photography, etc.)
  • Sell a $100 product 3 times (clothing, drop shipping, business resources, consulting, etc.)
  • Generate $20 in commission sales 14 times (travel agency, personal shopper, online sales, affiliate marketing, etc.)
  • Sell a $10 product 28 times (clothing, drop shipping, business templates, etc.)
  • Sell a $5 product 55 times (special discounted business resources for download, e-books, online products, etc.

Always Start with Your End Result and Work Backward

I feel like I reverse engineer nearly everything I do! Here’s a few examples of how I might use this strategy in everyday life:

  • In 6 months, I’d like to take a $2,500 vacation. I calculate how many weeks are in six months (approximately 25). $2,500 ÷ 25 weeks = $100 per week. I go ahead and set up a weekly auto draft from my online checking account into my savings account so that I know the money is there and I’m sure not to spend it! At the end of 6 months, I’m ready to pay for that vacation in cash.
  • I want to create an annual budget an be intentional with my spending. I write down monthly average expenses and divide them by four. I set up auto draft bill pay to pay on bills each week so that the lump sum doesn’t hit (or hurt as bad) once every month. For example, if I know my car insurance is $150 every month, I’ll set up a weekly auto draft to the insurance provider for $37.50 every Friday. That way I know my bills are paid and I won’t have a huge amount coming out of the account at one time.
  • I want to cook for dinner meals at home this week (that’s a big deal for me, we tend to eat out a lot… yikes!) I write down those meals in advanced, decide what groceries I will need, then order all of the items for curbside pick-up.

That’s just a few examples of the concept and for you, things might look differently. You’ll need to adapt the technique best suited to help you take baby steps to achieving those big goals!

Here are some examples of big business goals that I’ve used myself and how I use the process of reverse engineering to make these goals work:

  • Opening an online boutique – breakdown and research what did I expect to earn. How much did I expect in expenses? How will I find customers? What channels of social media will I use? How will I set up a website?
  • Reconstructing a historic building – breakdown and research how much money would be needed for reconstruction? How much will annual expenses cost? How will I generate revenue to pay back construction loans, cover expenses, and make a profit?
  • Creating a profitable blog – breakdown and research what ways I can create revenue and added value to my visitors? How can I serve the people that will visit my site? How can I create passive income and generate profits without keeping inventory or wagering my time? How can I get followers to subscribe and continue to visit my website? How much will it cost for me to maintain an online presence (website hosting, advertising, etc.)?

Self Discipline is the Key to Success

Maybe your big goal is a starting a side hustle, sticking to an exercising routine, monthly savings goals, opening a business, going on a nice vacation, paying for a vehicle in cash, or maybe even creating a blog of your own. Now you know how to break down big goals into smaller tasks. Commit to those tasks on a daily or weekly basis so that you can see that your big goal is on track to being accomplished. While breaking down the goal creates for an easier journey, you must still be self disciplined to put in the work to reach your success. As time passes, reevaluate your goal to make sure you’re on track and adapt to any changes if needed.

This strategy has proven to work in my life time and time again. I would consider myself a master at reverse engineering. One of my nerdiest reverse engineering qualities is tapping into the code of websites and figuring out different widgets and apps that are working for other successful businesses. Raise your hand if you’ve ever watched a YouTube video of how to do something? Yeah, we’ve all been there! I even YouTube-ed how to breathe during childbirth and it truly helped me during delivery! That’s the power of reverse engineering!

So tell me…

Are you familiar with reverse engineering?

Are you a “master” at reverse engineering but didn’t know it had a name?

What are your “big goals” and how can you break them down to make it easier to attain?

Leave a comment or contact me so we can figure it out together! I’d love to know your thoughts!





The Power of Reverse Engineering

I'm a South Georgia girl making strides in the world with big dreams and a heart to serve others!  I'm the champion of planning, organization, and being a perfectionist (hello, type one ennegram.) I'm really glad you're here!

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I'm Jenna Turner

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