I'm no mechanic, but I am a certified business coach. Your business is your vehicle. Are you driving it into the ground, or keeping it properly tuned up? Let's take a closer look.
Engine: Clearly, a vehicle (business) isn't going anywhere without an engine (brain/you). The engine is the reason you can put the pedal to the metal and go 0-60 in 8 or so seconds. Engines need gas to run. I'm going to go out on a limb here and say the "engine" of your business is what you put into your body to keep yourself fit and healthy enough to "run" efficiently. Do you:
* Eat on the run instead of packing a healthy lunch?
* Choose "convenient" foods over healthy ones
* Have healthy "snacks" nearby for the afternoon "snack-attacks"
Even know what constitutes a "healthy" lifestyle?
I'm not here to give you a dietary plan or a lecture, but you have to properly feed the brain of your business. Everyone's system (engine) is different, but if you're chronically tired, stressed, worn out, grouchy, negative, and "not running smoothly", chances you need a tune up. Sometimes changing one's diet can solve a lot of problems. You wouldn't put a soda in your gas tank, would you? Point made.
Stick-shift or Automatic: The question here relates to transmission. How do you transmit? Are you a totally hands-on (stick) person, controlling everything, or have you put systems in place to automate some portions of your business? The fact is, there are things about your business that need and require your hands-on attention; however, there are other parts of your business that can be automated. The most practical things you can "systemize", freeing your time and energy for other areas of the business that need you alert and present are:
* People and training
* Delivery and distribution
* Testing and measuring
* Systems and technology
Wait! Automate people? What? Make them robots? No, no, no. What I'm talking about here has to do with how you train your team. Do you have employee handbooks in place? Do you offer regular training?
What about distribution? Do you have systems in place to track delivery and distribution? How about testing and measuring? Wait! You DO test and measure EVERYTHING, right? And that computer system you have. . . how old is it? Is it like looking into your grandmother's refrigerator (think lettuce isn't really 98% water? Let it sit for a month and take another look).
It might be time to look at the areas of your business and seriously addressing those things that can be put to a "system", saving you hours of time, energy, and money.
Brakes: No, not breaks, though those are important to for you to take and for your employees to take as well. The brakes I'm talking about here is recognizing when things are running out of control, or have lost their sense of direction and you simply need to STOP. This is hard for some business owners to do. The business is rolling downhill at a zillion miles an hour, curves are coming up, there's no railing, and - well, let's just say that burning rubber smell is getting harder and harder to ignore . . . the point is, there comes a time in every business when you have to simply STOP, regroup, and get back on track.
Electrical System: Let's just call it nerves and cut to the chase. Stress on your vehicle's electrical system can cause shorts and if your car is like my colleagues car, it can shut down right in the middle of a busy highway...not good. You can do all sorts of things to reduce stress, including keeping your body healthy, but you can also make your business healthier by putting effective systems in place. A "short" in your business systems can bring everything to a halt. Be wise. Systemize.
Steering: You got 4 ways to go on the road: Right, left, reverse and straight ahead. In business, you can add two more: Up and Down. Steering your business (vehicle) in the right direction takes more than a windshield to look out of, a set of side mirrors and rearview mirror, and a window in back to see where you've been and who's barreling up on you. In business steering takes foresight, hindsight, insight - in other words, it takes being a visionary. That's where your mission and vision statement come into view. Ya gotta know where you are to know how to get to where you want to go. But, steering isn't simply turning the wheels; it's also about navigation (economy, personal challenges, bumps in the road), and how well you can plot a new course should you run up against detours.
Tires: Ah, yes. Try running a vehicle without tires and see how far you get. In business, the tires might be your sales and marketing team. You might have the best tires (team) in the world, but if they're not all on board, and if the "route" isn't real clear, they can wear out really fast.
Exhaust System. Without a good exhaust system, pollution can be entering your business and seriously mucking it up. You need a good filtering system that detect viruses that can bring your business to a screaming halt. Of course, I couldn't mention "exhaust" without also comparing it to your own exhausted self. Filters for human exhaustion include taking regular breaks, exercise, a healthy diet, and planning for your fun. Yes, you read right. When proper systems are put into place in your business, you'll actually find time, energy, and money to ENJOY your time off. (Yes, Virginia, there is a time-off Santa.)
No vehicle is perfect, just like no business is perfect. That's where a business coach comes in. A business coach is like your business vehicle's mechanic, doing the diagnostic and seeing where your business is running well, and where there are leaks, breaks, and problem areas in the system, then helping you get your vehicle back into alignment.
Alignment: Getting straightened out is a beautiful thing. Whether it's your business or you, proper alignment allows you and your business to function effectively, giving you more time, peace of mind, and yes--money to do the things you've been longing to do.
Communication is key. When you really look at all the parts of a vehicle, you'll see how one part "talks" to another, much like your brain talks to other parts of your body and they in turn talk to your brain, and when everything is running smoothly, that vehicle hums! But when things aren't running smoothly, that's a whole different tune. Bottom line, don't wait. Get your business check up with the best business "mechanic": a business coach.
Article Source: http://www.abcarticledirectory.com
Peter Williamson, Business Coach and Master Licensee. For a reports such as 11 Ways to Double Your Customer Base in 4 weeks, go to: www.actioncoachcalteam.com/index.php/Contact-Us.html and click on the banner ad (More) at the top.
Or visit www.actioncoachcalteam.com/.
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