Regular checkups always produce a better future. - IMAGE: Pexels/Karolina Grabowska

Regular checkups always produce a better future.

IMAGE: Pexels/Karolina Grabowska

There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure – Colin Powell

Several times throughout the year, we need to slow down, take a deep breath and look at ourselves, our process and our results. Call it a checkup or a “get out of your own way” meeting. Whatever the term used, it will bring fresh perspective and create a path for improvement. Here are three things we need to check up on regularly to ensure we stay on the right path:

Check Your Expectations

Expectations that are too high or too low can bring frustration and a sense that the results you see are out of your control. The startling truth is we set ourselves up for failure or we set ourselves up for success. Instead of setting a specific number to reach, set the steps and activities that will produce what you expect. Practicing your process, how to overcome common objections you are hearing from customers, and researching areas of your focus will bring about change and improvement. Your numbers never define you; however, your habits do!

Henry Ford was right; “Whether you think you can, or you think you can't – you're right.” Expectations determine the path we will travel on, and once the expectation is set to improve, it is time to go to work and ensure it happens! Fill the days ahead with new and improved habits, and watch the result outpace your expectations.  

Check Your Feedback!

We have entered a world where everyone is guided by feedback. It‘s not a cultural phenomenon. It is a discovery that everything improves when we look at it from the eyes of others. Truitt Cathy of Chick-fil-A fame asked the question his entire career, “Tell me one thing we can do better.” The best and most profitable ideas came from customers and fellow workers and at times from the most unsuspecting places. Many cringe when they hear the words role-play, yet it is one of the most productive uses of our time. It provides an opportunity for others to look at what we do and tell us one thing we can do better. The cumulative effect of this feedback can bring about tremendous improvement and cause us to reach levels we could never reach by ourselves. Check to ensure you are getting and using consistent feedback!   

Check The Clock!

Time has become a commodity more important than money! We have been focusing on the total time we have a customer in our office and have been working to shorten the time and hopefully lessen the frustration expressed by them. However, customers are not frustrated with just the time spent in the F&I office. It is more about how that time is used. If customers are gaining insightful information and experiencing emotionally how a product will help them have a better ownership experience, time flies and they are less concerned with the clock. We still have 30 to 40 minutes with a customer at best before an alarm goes off, screaming, “Get out before you make a wrong decision.” If that time is filled with a well-designed plan on which questions to ask, where to ask them, and what visuals to use to illustrate the principles worth paying for, customers don’t feel their time was wasted. Instead they feel it was time well spent. If you are learning and emotionally moved by the fresh information you are discovering, your customers will be, too! It’s all about what you are doing with your time as the clock moves each day!

Regular checkups always produce a better future. It works for machines, people and processes. Give yourself a checkup and watch the results increase and become much healthier! I’ll see you at the top and in better shape than ever before!