- The pandemic has caused lots of troubles for many businesses
- We can’t lose track of our long-term vision
- Keep delivering world-class service and experiences
- Continue to market. Continue to sell
- Be client-centric
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Hey, Pat here, and in this episode I want to talk with you about the four mistakes that I’m seeing business owners make as they’re kind of moving through this whole pandemic and trying to get back to a stage of normalcy reopening and getting back to what business used to be. So let’s get to it.
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All right, let’s talk about the four mistakes that I’m seeing small business owners make. I’m seeing our fitness business industry owners make really is they’re either reopening now or as there approaching reopening depending on what stage they’re in. The first is so many people kind of going into crisis mode and losing sight of their long-term vision. They’re not thinking about really what they want their business to look like 12 months, 18 months, 24 months and beyond. They’re only thinking about how to get through the day. They’re being reactive instead of what I would think of as playing on offense. And, you know, I understand in the beginning that first couple of weeks where you’re trying to get your bearings and you’re maybe moving things to an online platform, you’re trying to just hold on to your clients and find a rhythm of communication and coaching that works for both parties. But once we got past that, you know, we still have to be thinking about, okay, what are we doing long-term? What are we thinking about doing to build the business that we want to build and not just in panic mode, not just in crisis mode. Now that may feel tough to do emotionally, but if you don’t have a longterm plan in mind, you’re not going to be making good decisions in the short term. We’re seeing that time and time. Again, people not thinking about the ramifications of, you know, if they’re pausing things, if they’re amending pricing, if they’re announcing new programs, now that may not be relevant two, three, four weeks from now, you know what they’re doing in general, in the short term, what those things are going to mean to their long-term vision.
So that’s number one being in crisis mode and not thinking about the long-term. Number two is not focusing on still delivering a world class experience and delivering great client results to the people that we serve. I mean, yes, the circumstances change. Yes. you know, if you’re, if you’re, you may be limited in the capacity that you can serve in facility to given time if you’re still doing things online there, you know, there, there are still constraints that way, what equipment clients have access to what you know, what sort of buying you’re getting for online, but at the end of the day, the job is to deliver the results the client wants through inexperienced. They’re gonna enjoy. And if you’re focused on that, and if that is your driving force each and every day, you’re going to be fine. You’re not only going to retain the majority of your clients, but you’re also going to be attractive to new clients as you move forward, because this isn’t about executing the program in the way that you used to execute it. This isn’t about wishing that the circumstances were what they might’ve been six months ago, eight months ago, 12 months ago. This is about understanding who it is that we’re working with and what they want. So we’re going to need to make sure that every day we can look in the mirror and say, did we help our clients achieve their goals? Did we help our clients get the results that they want? And I don’t think that any of that’s changed. In fact, I would tell you that the people that I’ve seen thrive through all of this and really hang on to the majority of their clients and in some cases even grow are the businesses that have engaged even more and have solved problems even more effectively and have said, look, you know what, maybe we’re actually better at coaching clients thinking this way and being kind of forced out of our comfort zone then we were before. Maybe we’re more engaged than we were before. And if we approach it that way, if we approach the results that we have promised to people, and that’s why they’re paying us and the, the experience that we deliver, that connection, that community, that, that accountability that we can provide, no matter what the circumstances, then we’re going to be in pretty good shape.
The third mistake that I’ve seen people make is they just kind of shut down marketing and selling. So not only is there this fear of attrition, there’s a little bit of loss in some cases, in some cases, a lot of loss, because you know, if you’re in certain markets where people have been furloughed, they’ve lost their jobs. You know, they’re, they’re probably not going to stay with you, but in cases where maybe there’s just been a little bit of attrition businesses, haven’t been filling their business back up with people to replace the people they lose. If you’re a business owner, you are marketing 12 months a year without exception, you’re selling 12 months a year without exception. When I say without exception, I mean, that’s it, there, there is no alternative. If you want to be a healthy business owner, no alternative at all. And people have come to me and they’re struggling. And they’re saying, well, you know, I don’t know what to do. I’m like, well, have you marketed? No, I’ve been so caught up in this. I put that on the back burner. I’m like, well, it can never be on the back burner. People still have needs. They still have problems. They want to solve. They still have goals. They want to achieve. That’s never going to change. Now, the way that you speak to them, maybe, maybe different what their top priority or what their constraints are, may be different. But our job as a coach is still to help somebody go from where they are to where they aspire to be. And we still have thousands and thousands of people in every market who want to be in a better place than they are now and could use your help in getting there. So if you are marketing, you know what, don’t be tone deaf, be sensitive to the situation, make sure that maybe you’re being a little bit more flexible with the term of commitment, because people will have some uncertainty about, you know, what things are going to look like, you know, a month, three months, six months, 12 months down the road. So maybe be more flexible there, maybe offer people, things that have lower risk on their part, or a more flexible in the way that you’re coaching them. But we’re still selling. We’re still bringing in people to what we do, because if we’re truly living up to our mission as business owners, we should be able to help them even under the constraints that we’re faced with now.
And then finally, not being client centric, people being so stuck in their methodology, being so stuck in the way that they operate thinking it’s about some magic program or it’s about a building, or it’s about the tools that you use when in reality. And we don’t need all those bells and whistles to help somebody get better, to help somebody improve. We can do that with very limited resources. If somebody is getting great coaching, I’d rather have a simple program executed extraordinarily well, then the most creative well-designed program with all the possible resources execute in a really haphazard or mediocre fashion. So you can do this for people. You can help them. And if you’re being client centric, you can be sensitive to all the other things that are going, you know, going on in their life. You can help them do things that are going to improve recovery, that it’s going to help reduce stress. It’s going to help them find a little bit of balance and rhythm in their life. You can be in many cases the best part of their day, if you’re focused on them and not just focused on you, what you have going on, the things that you want to sell, no solve problems, serve people. You’ll do great. So those are the four problems or mistakes that I’m seeing. Small business owners make is they’re going through this process. If you avoid those, you’re going to be ahead of the crowd. You’re going to be set up to succeed. And then as this keeps kind of moving forward, as some of the restrictions start to loosen, as we get towards the latter half of summer, when maybe kids are going back to school and people kind of get back to a more structured normal routine, you’re going to be poised to thrive because you’re going to be doing the things that your competition isn’t keep that in mind, stay the course and you’ll do great.
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