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Are You Guilty of Any of These Common Mistakes?
In my 30+ years as a consultant, speaker, and trainer, well over 50 percent of my clients have been North America’s leading franchise organizations. I’ve worked with them during every imaginable economic scenario — steady-as-she-goes, inflation, recession, and expansion. That said, here’s my take on the missteps I see franchisees make most often…
Thinking they can cut costs and/or services in order to increase or maintain profits.
Yes, there is probably fat that can be trimmed and we need to look at every line item expense, but if you compromise the customer experience, you threaten the viability of your franchise business. Rather than asking: “How can we cut costs?,” look at the other side of the coin and ask: “How do we improve profits?” You’ll get an entirely different set of answers and ideas.
As the old saying goes: “You cannot do more with less.”
How about instead of cutting this and trimming that, you look at doing it better or differently? Ask yourself: “Are we doing the most important things” and, if we are, “is there another faster/better/cheaper way?” Creative problem solving is the only way it’s possible to do more with less.
Here’s an apt example: I was talking to the manager of a deli who was able to save over two hours a day in food preparation time when they stopped cutting the tops off the strawberries they use to garnish certain orders. Instead of simply cutting things out of your budget or curtailing hours or services, look at doing things in a new, improved way instead.
If you keep doing what you’re doing, it won’t keep you afloat or take you to the next level.
If you’re not changing and evolving, the world is going to pass you by. Of the three giant retailers that were start ups in 1961, K-Mart is not even in the 2015 list of Top 100 Retailers while Wal-Mart is #1 and Target is #6. What kept the latter two thriving after more than 50 years in business? They found a niche and filled it and then they never quit innovating.
Giving the bulk of your attention to the economy and the competition instead of to your customers and your employees.
Do you know why people give you their business? Do you understand what their reasons are? Do your employees work for you for your family-friendly policies or for your convenient franchise location or some combination of both?
It’s easy to find out why your best customers shop with you and why your best employees stay with you, all you have to do is ask them. Then you can make it easier for them to continue doing that — and attract more customers and employees just like them. Don’t be against the competition or bemoan the economy; be for your customers and for your people.
Not doing everything in your power to make sure you have the best coaches and players.
Not everyone can be a great leader, but most everyone can be a great coach. All you have to do is keep your hiring standards high and pick only the best players, then find out what motivates them, give them the training they need, and empower them to succeed. When great coaches empower great employees, everyone wins.
Certified Speaking Professional Mel Kleiman is an internationally recognized consultant, author and speaker/trainer on strategies for finding and keeping the best hourly employees. He is the president of Humetrics, a leading developer of systems, training processes, and tools for recruiting, selecting and retaining the best hourly workforce. Kleiman is the author of five books, including the best-selling "Hire Tough, Manage Easy." For more information, visit www.humetrics.com or call (713) 771-4401.
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