Vail Daily column: Enjoying the benefits of consistency
You know the saying “one step forward and two steps back” right? And sometimes it may even be “one step forward and three or four steps back.”
Many of us have endeavored to improve our life in some capacity, and you too may have experienced this forward then backward type of result. People trying to lose weight may become very energized about their diet and exercise plan, and they just might maintain a consistent routine for the first few days or maybe even the first week.
And then as life happens, workloads increase and personal issues surface, we wind up finding every excuse to drop our consistent behaviors, exercise routines and diet commitments and end up even further back than when we first began. Sound familiar?
RECIPE FOR DISASTER
It’s like the sales professional who has the responsibility for consistently generating new business by selling to new customers. Sometimes as sales people we get fired up about the potential to earn more money through acquiring new customers. So we invest the time necessary to build up our business. We make calls, attend networking events, visit prospects and ask for referrals.
We do this consistently for a brief period of time and experience either the near-term benefits of our behaviors or quickly get frustrated with rejection and therefore revert to doing “busy work” instead of productive sales work. And one step up and two steps back in the world of selling is a recipe for disaster or, at the least, a loss or reduction of income.
My experience with business owners and managers is that many cycle through the same lack of consistent behaviors or model a lack of consistent leadership characteristics. For a week or maybe for a month or two, the focus is on the showroom being immaculate, positive feedback is shared, coaching in areas that need development takes place and we inspect what we expect.
TAKING OTHERS WITH YOU
The danger in the one step forward and two steps back for business owners and managers is that when we fall two steps back, we take our employees with us. And once that happens, we have to work much harder to get the team back on track.
And the same things happen in our personal relationships, too, right? Today we give hugs, love on each other, speak kindly and show gratitude and appreciation. Maybe we even do this for a few days or weeks. Then the flowers stop coming, the notes don’t get written, the hugs are fewer and farther between, car doors stop being opened and hand holding and gentle, subtle touches seem to disappear. So the one step forward and three or four steps back leads to a breakdown in our relationships and repairing the damage and the resentment could take months or even years to fix.
So the answer isn’t perfection. We will never be perfect in every single thing that we do.
The answer is consistency and understanding that we are the ones who can control the consistency of behaviors that will lead us to the results that we truly desire in every aspect of our lives. Forget perfection, strive for excellence and make a commitment to consistency, and then watch as you take yourself and your family or your team five steps forward.
How would a commitment to consistency change or shape your life or business? I would love to hear all about it at firstname.lastname@example.org and when we get past the one step forward and two steps back roadblocks of life, we will consistently have a better than good week.
Michael Norton is a business coach, motivational speaker and CEO of http://www.candogo.com. He writes a weekly column for the Vail Daily.