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The foundation for achievement

Mark Mooney, Principal, Mohala Motorsports Consulting
December 23, 2011
Filed under Dealer Consultants

Let’s face it, times have changed, and the way we grow has changed also. That customer coming through your door is more important than ever. And even more important is making sure they return. They are the lifeblood of your business, and without them, you don’t exist.

Just because your methods worked before doesn’t mean they work now. Your leadership team has to look at other ways to grow a profitable, sustainable business. All departments need to help each other: one for all, all for one, and you need leadership that harnesses this.

What’s your plan? Where are you going to start? How are you going to get there? Let’s start with the three A’s: autonomy, accountability and achievement.

You can have the best thought-out plan and have it fail miserably if your team and its leaders haven’t been trained properly. That’s autonomy: Can they work on their own with a clear understanding of what is expected of them? Do they understand what their duties are, how important they are to the overall success of the team, and how to accomplish what needs to be done on a daily basis?

Is there accountability for what is being done and for what is not being done? Lack of accountability is one of the great problems businesses all face on a daily basis, and it also is one that should not happen, period. Accountability is one of the great motivators. It provides a framework for individuals’ desires to excel and to grow. An accountable, motivated team member is a great example to others always, and that is who you want on your team, and that is who you want as a leader.

Without accountability you will find a poor work ethic and low motivation in even the best of your team members. You will have smaller sales, fewer profits and fewer return visits from those customers that make it all happen, and building that profitable, sustainable business with that great plan will get a lot harder to accomplish.

Profitable business growth even in less than stellar economic times is achievable. It takes hard work, and it takes openly and honestly looking for new ways to approach and accomplish what needs to be done.  You need a well-trained team that can work with autonomy and is accountable for what they do. You need your managers to be the leaders who empower, mentor and pass their knowledge onto others.

This is the foundation, this is where you start, and this is where you plan.  Achievement will follow, and you will succeed.

Next time around I’m going to give you an idea that will grow your business. It will take all your departments working together as a team, being able to work with autonomy and being held accountable. The best part is it’s not going to cost you a dime, just a little bit of time.

“It is not only what we do, but what we do not do, for which we are accountable.” ~Moliere

Comments

One Response to “The foundation for achievement”

  1. Jeff Scherer on December 24th, 2011 9:29 am

    Mark: You are right on with the three “A’s.” These are some key attributes that really help support the proper business processes. Unfortunately these attributes probably will have little impact if the culture within the company is not right. Culture is not a process and something that can be rolled out “starting Jan. 1.” At the core, it is the essence of how a company is going to conduct their business (both internally and externally).

    Think of top-line companies like Ritz-Carlton and American Express. What is your expectation in dealing with the culture of those two companies? Now think about the largest CPG retailer and the largest electronics retailer (whose names have been left out for politeness). If you have to return an item to the CPG store, it’s a very simple process and civil, if not friendly. Try to return a product to the electronic retailer and you feel like you are on trial for something. In the back of the store, I imagine their return processes are probably much the same. In the front of the store however, the story and experience is much different for the consumer- due to the different cultures fostered by each business. It seems the one company gives their employees the ability to address the customer’s needs while the other company’s mandate is to protect the company’s interests at all costs (aka discouraging returns).

    All of these companies may have the three A’s, but is the culture within the business- starting at the top- which ultimately determines the behavior of their employees, and ultimately the extent that those employees are allowed to go to make a customer happy.

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