Happy New Year! I hope you are full of optimism during the next 365 days and ready to break some old bad habits as well as make some new good habits. I thought this would make a great New Year’s article!
You might want to cut this article out of the magazine or print this off the web site and save it in a file in your filing cabinet for reading and re-reading later as what I am about to share with you is applicable EVERY week of the year, and not just for New Year’s Resolutions.
The first thing you must do is prepare your mind and yourself. I want you to make a resolution with yourself that you will keep an open mind for the next 365 days. You will place yourself in a condition that you are open to any and all ideas regardless what you may think you know or have experienced over the years. You will consider EVERY new concept placed before you, not with skepticism that it’s a dumb idea or it will never work, but with the objective that you will consider new concepts and seek any opportunity to find at least ONE way you can use what you have just encountered in your business to benefit yourself, make work easier and more efficient for your staff, add a few pennies or dollars to your profitable bottom line. I want you to forget everything you know, and see the world with new or renewed eyes and wonder…….
The second thing you must do is resolve to set aside some TIME. I’m not asking for a huge commitment from you, just one hour per week. That’s a whole 52 hours out of the year. If you are anything like I was when I had my shop, you are likely working 80 to 120 hours a week in your business. I understand that you may think you need each and every one of those 4,160 hours (or more) just to get by, but you don’t. If just one of those 52 hours can give you an idea or system that saves you hours per week, it’s time well spent working ON your business rather than IN it.
The third resolution I want you to make is to promise yourself that you will ACT, you will move beyond ‘thinking about it’ and get to ‘doing it’. We all tend to procrastinate, thinking to ourselves that someday I will get around to it. Sadly, for many, those some days never come. Do it now!
The fourth resolution I would like you to make is: het out and mingle! I want you to get out of your plant and go to a local city or state dry cleaning association meeting and meet other business owners like yourself. If you don’t have a local dry cleaner’s association, go to a Chamber of Commerce meeting, go to a BNI breakfast meeting, go to a business referral breakfast meeting, join a Rotary meeting (good lunch by the way and there are multiple chapters in each city). It’s always beneficial to participate in your local community, and you just might meet a few new potential customers while enjoying a great meal and a cup of coffee.
The fifth resolution I would like you to make is to REACH OUT! There are thousands of cleaners just like you reading this article, and less than three are going to pick up the phone and call, or sit down at a keyboard and type up a short email, or send a Facebook message. There are many writers, experts and consultants just like myself writing for this magazine (and others), all of which would love to be a resource for you to tap for advice, knowledge, recommendations, or just simple reassurance that you are not the only one in your situation. Speaking for myself, I don’t charge for an initial consultation, and I don’t ask for any obligation, I feel it’s my way of giving back to an industry that has given me so much. I know many of my fellow writers and consultants tend to feel the same way. So, pick up that phone, send that email! We are here to help, and if we can’t, we can refer you to someone who can.
Lastly, resolve to not give up. It’s okay to make mistakes, it’s okay that plans don’t turn out, it’s okay to fail. Failure only becomes permanent when you stop trying. I’m proud of my failures. Yes, I’ve made more than my share of mistakes, and I’ve fallen short of goals, and I’ve had some very hard times, and I am not ashamed of it anymore. Those failures have made me what I am today, and I’ve learned valuable lessons that have repaid me much more than the losses I incurred experiencing them. You will survive your failures, and it is my promise to you that failure is never permanent as long as you learn from it. Success is trying just one more time than you failed.
I’ve provided you with SIX resolutions, implementing just ONE can and will create amazing changes in your business, and ultimately your life, and all for the better. It’s entirely up to you what you will make of 2020. Happy New Year!