Archive for the ‘Performance’ Category

Taking It One Step at a Time

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Have you ever tried to force yourself to do something you know you need to do? I hear people talk about having the willpower and the discipline to make one more sales call, lose weight, start a new job, write a book, take a walk, talk to a girl or boy you want to go out with, etc. and yet I find the willpower to be an elusive concept. My experience is that willpower fades easily when you want to do anything else besides the thing you are trying to will yourself to do. Discipline works the same way. I am very disciplined right up until when I am not.

Commitment

For me, commitment and priority seem to be the real key. And it works in that order – commitment first and then priority to fulfill the commitment. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately.

You see, I can do a ton of things. On a daily basis, I take care of my family, the business, even a neighbor, if needed. The thing I haven’t done well is take care of my health. I’ve struggled with this weight thing most of my adult life. I’ve tried every program, read every book, and lost hundreds of pounds only to find them again on another day. This might sound like a familiar story to you.

About 85 days ago, I decided that one of the challenges related to my weight loss efforts is that I rarely stick with anything long enough to get a sustainable result. In casual conversation, one day a friend of mine talked about my “diet du jour” mindset. It’s true. I find the motivation and willpower to start a new program. It’s easy when it’s new. There’s hope and excitement about getting started. And then…the motivation fades and the willpower gets all used up in the first few days. It’s a vicious cycle that tears away at the discipline it might take to stick to the program even one more day.

With that lack of “stick with it” awareness, I knew I needed to commit to something that was longer than a 10 day this or a 21 day that. I’m also aware that my travel life can wreck routine, which also takes me off track. But my travel life can’t be an excuse.

Giving it 100%

There are plenty of people who travel and don’t suffer from obesity. Out of the blue, I thought about the next 100 days. I can’t say exactly why 100 days came to mind. I think maybe I was thinking of giving “it” 100%. Anyway, I decided one thing I could do whether I’m traveling or not is walk. Humans are designed to walk 5-10 miles a day. I have several tracking devices because, of course, during any one of my “diet du jour” moments I knew I needed to add exercise, so over the years I’ve bought pedometers, smart watches, heart monitors, and anything that would tell me how many steps or calories I’m burning and more. Honestly, if what I knew about diet and exercise mattered even a little bit, I’d be super model thin! Knowledge has not been power for me with this particular situation.

Here’s what I decided. I know it’s going to take more than 100 days to get to a healthy goal weight. It’s going to take at least one year. That knowledge always screws with my willpower and discipline. So, I decided I could make a commitment for 100 days.

It is not scientifically true that it takes only 21 days to build a habit. That’s a gimmick. The science says at about day 66 real habit begins to form. No wonder I couldn’t get locked in and find real lasting results. I committed to walking 10,000 steps 100 days in a row. I made it one day and then missed day two and started over. I walked two days and missed day three. On that day, I joined Jenny Craig. That’s one of the programs I had not tried. It’s working well. On try three, I took that commitment and began to prioritize the walk.

As of this writing, I’m on day 82. I’m very excited about completing this 100 days and committing to 12,000 steps during the next 100 days. It’s been difficult. I was extremely sore for the first three weeks. I had to walk two or three times a day to get all the steps in. That felt miserable. However, once I got past day four, then five… on to seven and for sure at day ten, I did not want to start over. The success of each day “fed” the next day and is supporting the completion of the goal.

Why do I share this?

Why do I share this? There are a couple of reasons. One, I think there are things everyone faces that hold them back. There’s some kind of magic about this 100-day commitment and I am compelled to share it with you. I don’t have the science of anything more than my own experience but I want to encourage you that if you can commit to whatever it is that you know will make you better, happier, richer, calmer, healthier, have more fun… whatever it is and then just go for it, I believe something BIG can happen for you.

It sounds so simple or maybe even trite. But it is BIG. There’s something magic for me about putting one foot in front of the other one day at a time. I have to block about 90 minutes to make sure 10,000 steps happen daily. I prioritize the walk time before I start my day and usually take a short walk at the end of the day.

I listen to music and read by listening to Audible. I’ve read or been read to a ton in the last 82 days. I am able to feed myself spiritually, mentally, and physically. A commitment is baseless without prioritizing it. Giving the steps top priority each day has strengthened my resolve in other areas. Understanding that I can make commitments to myself and keep them has given me a strength I was unaware of. I want you to have that.

Thank You

Second, I want to say thank you. Many of you have watched this journey on Facebook. I hesitated to post daily but found that it was a super way to hold myself accountable. In our leadership training, we talk a ton about performance management. I believe that I’ve reinforced my own learning of what we teach by checking in each day on Facebook.

Here’s what happens. In our leadership training, we talk about the ABCs of performance management.  There’s the A (all the things that happen before you put a team member to work… job description, orientation, on the job training, etc.) It’s like all the reading I’ve done about health and fitness. Then there’s the B (behavior). Your team member does the job. With my walking, the job is to get the 10,000 steps a day. Now the C comes into play. This is the Consequence or reinforcement regarding the behavior. The reinforcement works and I’ve watched that in a BIG way each day and have been surprised and amazed at just how much it impacts my own behavior.

Early on, I posted very late one night… I nearly forgot. It must have been day seven or eight. A close friend reached out and texted me, “Did you get your steps in today?” You see, someone was watching. Someone I cared about. That mattered a lot to me. I quickly posted and haven’t forgotten since then.

I hope you are making the team member correlation. Some might even say that was negative reinforcement. He checked in because I had not completely done my job that day. Although I had completed my steps, I had not posted the results. All the other reinforcement has been incredibly positive. I receive encouragement on a daily basis. Other people have made walking commitments and are posting their results on my page! I love that.

I know this article is longer than we normally post but I believe there is such an important message here. Find something you know you need to or want to do. Identify that thing you know could make a big difference in your life. Make one small commitment. Make it something you know you can do that will move you one step closer. And then do it for 100 days. See what happens. It might take you two or three times like it did me. You might be able to get after it and stay after it from day one.

All I know is that anything we do or want to do must be done one step at a time. When the commitment to take the first step is real, then the priority to follow through is easier than trying to force yourself through willpower and discipline.

I hope you’ll take the time to share your experiences, questions, and thoughts about this newsletter on our blog.

Are You Putting All Your Eggs in one Basket?

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When you or your sales people are making outbound calls or going to sell outside of the center, how many different types groups are you contacting? Are you putting all your eggs in one basket and just focusing on one group of schools, daycares or large businesses?

Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

As people, we do not like to step out of our comfort zone.  I know that I excel at marketing, social media, and training, but I don’t think I am great at selling. So like many of us, we typically just stick to what we know we are great at, but to be the best, we must work on the areas that are not our strengths. For me, I try to practice selling anytime I can. Whether it is trying to sell my husband on something I want, role playing with colleagues or clients, or really, just practicing selling to anyone who will just listen to me. But the key is that I step out of my comfort zone, I don’t put all my skills in one basket, I get out there and sell, and as Nike says I “Just Do It.”

We see so many times that sales teams that put all their eggs in one basket and sell to just schools, or daycares, or big businesses. It’s normal for people to stick to what they know and what is comfortable to them but how much more successful could sales teams be if they spread their base and get out of their comfort zone?

Planning for the Future

Think of it this way, when we are planning for our financial future, we typically split up our investment. If we are smart,  will invest most of our money in areas that are safe but may not have a high return. Then we put a little bit in an area that may be risky, but it gives us a higher return on our investment. The point is no financial advisor would ever tell you to put all your money in one area, and sales should be the same way. It’s time to think out of the box when it comes to sales and who we are reaching out to. If you have just focused your time and effort on schools and daycares, think about reaching out to companies for summer picnics, team building events, meetings or company parties. If you spend most of your time on companies, think about reaching out to sports teams, daycares, or get a jump on schools.

The point is not to place your sales eggs in one basket.  If you continue to do so, you are at a high risk of losing over time. Spread your time in different markets and find that balance of selling to those that are in our safety net and those that might be a higher risk to book. The place you haven’t been selling just might be the place you get the biggest return!

Time Management Tips Part 2

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How did you do managing your time this past month? What methods did you use? I would love to hear from you, so please shoot me an email to tell me what you found. If you missed out on part one of our two-part time management series, you can find it here. Here comes the next step: practice.

Practicing is going to take you longer than just a month. I’m sure you are saying, “But it only takes 21 days for something to become a habit, right?” Wrong. I did a lot of reading on this and it takes more. Check out this article. It does take 21 days for the change to become easier, but it takes on average 66 days to become a habit. Our goal is to make it a habit!

Practice Makes Perfect

Once you have figured out the best method for managing your time, you have to practice it daily. You have to commit and train yourself to do it every day. One easy way to do this is to set a time each day to plan. It can be planning for the day or could be at the end of the day for next day planning. The technique you choose for time management will help you determine when to plan.

Since I use a bullet journal, my routine is that I sit down at my desk with a big cup of coffee and look at my list from the day before. I determine if there are items I did not complete and need to add to that day, move them to a later date, or just don’t need to do them at all and mark each one with a symbol. Then I start adding to my list based on the emails I received. That list is my guide to what I need to get done through the day and makes it easy for me to focus on those tasks. Some days this takes me only five minutes, but I usually schedule about 30 minutes for planning.

Elevate and Delegate

I’m a type-A personality. That means I love to be in charge and try to do everything myself. How many of you are the same way? If we want to do everything and if we want to be in control of our time, we need to look at what needs to be done and decide what we need to delegate and what we need to elevate.

Tasks that may not need your special skill set or require someone else’s abilities are the ones we want to delegate. Think of all the small things you’re doing in a day and how much time they take up. Delegate those tasks out. The to-dos you enjoy, are really good at and require a special skill set are the ones you want to elevate and do yourself.

Delineate the Time to Work on a Task

How many times do we sit down to start working and think to ourselves, “This project is going to take forever! I’m never going to finish!” We all go through that at some point it time. The key is to break it down into smaller sections and then determine how much time you are willing to work on it. It’s a lot easier to say, “For the next hour I’m going to work on this and then take a ten-minute break.”

Delineating that time helps you stay motivated and focused. The break afterward is really important so you can move on to the next task. Breaks allow time to step away, refresh your mind, and be ready for the next task. Some easy break ideas are to get some fresh air, meditate for a few minutes, or do some yoga stretches. You will be ready for the next task.

Learn to Say No

Saying no tends to be one of the hardest things for people to do. For the most part, we all want to work as a team and step in when others are not able to complete a task. Learning to say no is one of the most powerful things you can learn.

I hope these time management techniques and tips have identified some methods for managing your time better. Hopefully, they will come in handy as your summer business picks up and you find yourself on the floor more. I would love to hear your feedback and time management techniques. Comment below or send me an email to rosie@trainertainment.net.

 

Five Articles for Personal and Business Success

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One of our core values is intentional learning. This is how we define intentional learning:

Learning has always been one of the things I enjoy the most. From a young age I always wanted to read and now that I’m older I love to read for learning. While my type of reading for learning isn’t always the conventional path (yes, we are talking books!), I do spend loads of time reading. Since I have been in Jakarta, I’ve spent a lot of time in the car.

Trust me, some days I would rather be on Facebook or Instagram for the few hours of travel, but I try to spend most of my time read articles, whitepapers, or other research.

Often I come across really great articles that I share on the Trainertainment Facebook page. This week I wanted to share with you a few articles that I really enjoyed. All the articles I read this week have to do with personal and business success. I mean, we are all working to be successful in both, right? So, here are my top five articles for the week.

All Great Minds Have This 1 Habit In Common

This article is perfectly in line with our core value of intentional learning. I’m always amazed that people want to be the best in their field and grow professionally but they don’t take the time to read. In this article, you can see that some of the most successful people in the world read daily.

 

3 Lessons Every Business Can Learn From Chick-fil-A

It could be that I absolutely love Chick-fil-A and am craving it as we get ready to head home, but the lessons in this article are outstanding. I saw a funny post today that was making fun of Chick-fil-A and their customer service.

The founder, Truett Cathy, says it perfectly, “We aren’t in the chicken business. We are in the people business.” This alone drives the company to do things in an uncommon way and with a purpose. We could all learn something from Chick-fil-A’s success.

13 Things You Should Give Up If You Want To Be Successful

We always talk about things we need to do in our life to make us more successful, but we don’t always talk about the things we need to give up. That is one reason I really enjoyed this article. The first one on the list is to give up an unhealthy lifestyle. That is something everyone in our organization is doing. The article lists many other things it might be good to give up, too.

 

Prevent Burnout by Making Compassion a Habit

Who has ever felt burnt out at work? I think we have all had those moments. There are things we can do as leaders to help others not feel burned out. This is a big deal as we don’t want to lose our top talent because of burnout. When we can find the needs and desires of our people, we can usually prevent burnout from happening. This article will help you learn empathy for others and how self-compassion will help you.

 

10 Mind-Sharpening Daily Activities That You Can Do in 10 Minutes Or Less

This article is about activities we can do every day to sharpen our mind. We don’t think about our mind being sharp before we work. We typically just start working and get the day going. I personally already do a few of the things on the list. If you read the blog last week, you saw that I bullet journal which means I’m making a list so I can be ready for the day and know what needs to be done. Now, I don’t know about taking a cold shower, I like mine HOT, but moving more has been a priority and being useful to someone is what we do here at Trainertainment. We are in the business of helping people and businesses grow with coaching, training, and great information like this!

A Desire to Serve & It Shows!

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“A business absolutely devoted to service will have only one worry about profits. They will be embarrassingly large.”  Henry Ford

A Desire to Serve

I had breakfast with a friend of mine last week at a 50-year-old restaurant near downtown Fort Worth. That establishment may have the BEST example of a business that exudes a real “culture of service”I’ve ever seen. Was it a five-star place? NO. Look it up. The Ol’ South Pancake House. It’s what you would think, except bigger!

They had lots of seats and plenty of staff. When we arrived, they found us a table (booth) as quickly as possible. There was a slight wait, but the host was so pleasant. She seemed glad to see us. Neither of us had ever been to this location, but honestly, it felt like we were part of the family.

Once seated, we were greeted by the BEST server I’ve ever had. The only way I can describe Jennifer is that she was genuinely joyful to serve our breakfast. She smiled. She verbalized how happy she was we were there. She was interested in us having the best thing for breakfast based on dietary needs and desire.

Get Your Staff Enthusiastic

Listen, I don’t know how to tell you to help your staff get enthusiastic about the choices your guests make, but I can tell you as a guest, I LOVE it! The word that comes to mind about this server is authentic. She wasn’t faking it. She was happy and joyful. She had a genuine desire to serve, and it showed.

Maybe that’s the interview question we need to ask prospective or current employees. “How would you rate yourself on a scale of 1-10 when it comes to serving others, with 1 being I’m a help yourself kind of person and 10 representing a burning desire to serve others?” Then I would ask for an example of a time when they exhibited that kind of service.

A Spirit of Service

Back to Jennifer. She was friendly and tuned into the fact that my friend and I were going to visit a while. She never interrupted inappropriately yet tended to our every need. At one point during breakfast, my friend said, “Jennifer makes me want to ask her for one more thing just so she’ll come back to the table!” I’m telling you this woman was gifted with a “service spirit.” I know that may sound “woo-woo,” but it was just awesome!

We got to looking around, and you know what, the place was full of Jennifers. Every server was fully engaged when they were with a table. We even noticed a cranky couple at a table near us. Their server seemed to make it her mission to lighten up this meal for Mr. and Mrs. Cranky. It worked.

I think it may have had something to do with the fact that when she delivered breakfast, she did so with an enthusiastic, “Incoming!” and served them eggs and bacon in a royal sweeping style. You had to laugh. You have to get happy even when you are cranky! It’s bacon and eggs for crying out loud, and to me, it looks super important to the folks at the Ol’ South Pancake House for it to be a meaningful and fun part of each of their customer’s day. That’s a culture. They all believe what they are doing is important and they are consistently delivering service at a level I haven’t seen in a while! It was so honest and genuine.

Jennifer, if you see this…..I mean it, YOU are the best server I’ve ever had.

Wouldn’t it be cool for your guest service people to get tagged with that message?