Objective: Drain the Swamp

I am sure at some point in time that you have gotten so involved in the day to day that you forgot your main goal. Years ago I heard the expression, “At times when you are waist deep in alligators, you forget your prime objective was to drain the swamp!” The day to day operations of your business is definitely the swamp and all those alligators are the employees and customers that are nipping at you. Pulling you here and there based on their needs and not yours.

It really doesn’t matter if you had that planning session and defined your major objectives this year or not. That day to day pulling by everyone keeps you off task. You are not focused and at the end of the year, you wonder why nothing is different in your business.

Step one: Write down that goal or objective and put it somewhere you can see it daily. It maybe the bathroom mirror, the sun visor in your vehicle, or a prominent spot on your desk. It is almost like the stick with the carrot on a string. If you don’t keep it in front of you, you will continue to miss the mark.

Step Two: Tell everyone in your business what your objective is. Business owners for some reason like to keep all their hopes and dreams to themselves. Why? Your employees have to do their job in order for you to hit your objectives for the business. It would be like a high scoring ball game, but you keep the scoreboard hidden from the players on the field. How can your employees have a since of purpose in the business if you keep everything away from them. Share the objective; make them part of the objective; and they will perform better and help hold you accountable.

Step Three: Give yourself a timeline. Small objectives daily, weekly, monthly – all leading to the ultimate solution. Huge steps are generally impossible. I have always said, a successful business is doing a lot of small things right. If you don’t have that timetable, how will you know where you are in the process? In football, you have a clock, right? Do the players always step up their performance near the end of a quarter, or half? Sure they do. And so will you and your team if they know the score and what time it is.

Step Four: Give yourself a reward for your achievements. It doesn’t have to be something great. Just something to acknowledge you attained that small objective. It could be anything from a slice of your favorite pie to buying that special fishing lure you have been wanting. Then, don’t forget to reward your team. Years ago for the larger milestones, whenever the team hit a new sales goal, we would always break out the grill and have steaks with all the trimmings. Even when we did this several months in a row, it never got stale. We all celebrated meeting the objective. Then we started working towards the next one.

Step Five: Ask for help. Your people are good at what they do or they would not be working for you. Ask the office to help resolve customer complaints so you are not getting the brunt of it. “What will it take to make you happy?” is the question to ask. When my office started that, my refunds went down, and customer satisfaction went up. The technicians in the field can also do the same before they leave the job site. And you can always ask for help from someone like The Plumbers Coach™ to help you focus and attain those objectives. Just remember, forget the alligators and drain that swamp!

Get more information at www.theplumberscoach.com.

The Plumbers Coach™ Detailed personalized business coaching for plumbing contractors. Like us on Facebook @The Plumbers Coach, follow us on Tweeter @T_PlumbersCoach and LinkedIn @KeithGlass15.

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