Plan Your Work — Work Your Plan
The professional power-wash business is a difficult one — even if you do everything right. Success is not easy unless you plan your work and work your plan.
There is a saying that people can be grouped into three categories — those with money and no time, those with time but little money, and finally those who have both time and money. It’s a cute story, but is it true?
Frankly, one thing we are all given is time. It’s what we do with our time that makes the difference. And no, we will not be talking about “time management,” because that doesn’t exist. You can’t manage time, you can only manage what you spend your time on — and that’s what makes the difference.
The movers and shakers in our industry are people who practice “… a place for everything and everything in its place.” They are the most organized people around. One of the basic elements of using time effectively is getting and staying organized. So let’s explore this a little more.
What’s the price you are paying for being unorganized?
- Stress and anxiety
- Unclear priorities
- Low productivity
- Lost sales and income
- Lack of discipline
- Diminished self-esteem
Chances are the less organized you are the more stressed your lifestyle is. You are probably frequently late for appointments or you miss them entirely. You maybe have had to reschedule a job because you didn’t order the soaps you need. You are very likely to “lose” clients as well as existing ones by not following up with them on a timely basis. It’s probably also true that deadlines are not your strength and you frequently are completing projects the night before they are due. How many of the same tools do you have because you don’t know what you did with the last three you bought?
Does any of this sound familiar? Are you curious as to what a difference being organized can make? Let’s take a look at it.
Ask yourself: What is my being unorganized costing me in dollars?
What are the benefits of getting organized?
- Having clear purpose and objectives
- Enhanced functionality (easier to take action)
- Ability to better focus on individual tasks
- Increased productivity and profitability
- Greater sense of accomplishment on daily basis
- Feeling harmony, peace, balance
- Greater self-confidence and healthier self-esteem
One of the integral functions of your computer is called defragmentation — or “defrag.” Whenever your system starts acting up or slows down, a good start at fixing this problem is to defrag the hard drive, which cleans all the files stored on your hard drive and puts everything in its proper place. It’s also the case with our lives — we have to do a “defrag” and get organized to be able to “run” properly.
Ask yourself: What specifically would be different/better in my life/business if I were more organized?
What needs to be present to get and stay organized?
I know – here we go again with this “having clear goals” business. But without knowing where you want to end up it’s kind of hard to choose action steps, identify priorities and be accountable. After all, if you are not after any specific results it doesn’t matter what you do with your time, right?
Remember the last time you were leaving for vacation; did your productivity skyrocket a few days prior to taking time off? Most likely you did.
When you have a serious deadline (like leaving work for a week) you are forced to prioritize your activities; you list the “must do’s”, you don’t waste time on any nonessential work, and you delegate everything you possibly can – all because you are “short on time”. Without clear and specific deadlines you are giving yourself an impression that you have an unlimited amount of time – but do you?
Whether you like to admit it or not we all are creatures of habit. How you use your time now is the results of years of “practice”. To change it will also take time so don’t look to do this overnight. Don’t overwhelm yourself with fixing all your problems at once. Just focus on one improvement per month. For example – make the next four weeks your “put all papers in proper files away” weeks. Set up reminders for yourself up for reverting to your old habit of building mountains of paper on your desk. It’s natural to stumble at first. Just notice it and figure out what you can do to reduce your chances of following your old routines again. Before you know it four weeks will be up and most likely you will have developed a new good habit of filing away all paperwork on regular basis. Just try it! You will be amazed with your results.
It’s the ability to finish what you started even if you don’t feel like it anymore! Today you may be very excited about your “put all papers in proper files away” weeks. Chances are tomorrow at 5pm you will feel more like just quitting for the day rather than filing your mountain of papers away. But doing it anyway – that’s discipline. That’s one of the predominant characteristics of hugely successful people! Do you have it?
Ask yourself: What is my number one goal this year?
Make it a real goal that you can track. Don’t just say I want to make $1,000,000. Say I want to add 3 houses per week and I want to add one truck fleet per month, etc. Keep them realistic.
Here is your home work for the week….
1. This week send out ‘thank you’ letters to people whose houses you have washed and ask for referrals.
2. Call 3 trucking companies this month.
3.Send out 2000 additional post cards (500 per week).
4. Attend one business to business meeting.
Ask yourself what habits I have to change to create the results you want? How will you do it? How will you keep yourself accountable?
You don’t have to over load yourself. Just put in that little extra effort and you will be surprised at the results.
And remember to always Power Through!