What Do You Want?
Some years ago when my wife Susan and I were dating, she had finally become frustrated when five, then six-plus years had passed with little change in our relationship. Would she ever hear those four little words, "Will you Marry Me?" Maybe you can imagine my discomfort, as a long-time bachelor, when she began to ask ME a particular question...“What do you WANT, Philip?"
You see I was fine with our relationship the way it was, even when she smilingly compared our dating life to an “Andy Griffith romance”...weekend dinners and movies, ALWAYS great conversations, but no sign of a real commitment. We were both busy people, so I guess I was in no hurry. But, when her question became more pointed and less smiling, I realized it was time to fish or cut bait. I had to ask myself, “What DO you want, Philip?”
Our software company receives calls from business owners all over the United States and around the world, sharing their frustrations about being bogged down in day-to-day operations, and looking for ways to free themselves of working long hours and dealing with errors, bottlenecks and miscommunications. They seek help in controlling seemingly endless variables in processes that “normally” run a business. But, what many of those overwhelmed owners describe as "normal" or "business as usual”...I would call CHAOS!
Owners tell us they feel chained to their business that has now become just a very difficult job. Many say they don't feel like owners, but feel as if the business owns them. It’s taken over their lives and, in some cases, the lives of their family.
Business owners generally call us after they have visited our Website, watched a few of our videos, read our articles, or maybe even read our book. Initially, we hear excitement in their voices, as if they have found the answer to their dilemma—Like someone having found a new fad diet that is sweeping the country, seeming to offer some magical ingredient that will solve their weight problem quickly and forever—and with little to no real effort.
Now I ask YOU, as a business owner or manager..."What do you want?" I mean, WHAT DO YOU REALLY WANT?
Why do you get up every morning to bust your rump at work, fight the same battles every day, answer the same questions from your staff for the zillionth time, and worry about the same mistakes being made again and again?
Yes, I know you have to make a living, but you don't have to OWN a business to make a living! You don't have to endure the burdens of law suits, government over-regulation and taxes, employees pulling at you from every direction, constant phone calls from the office when you’re on vacation or trying to enjoy a family event, training and retaining staff, the up-and-down economic cycles, constant changes in business technology, making payroll, and paying down your debt.
Need I say more? If this doesn't sound familiar, please don't send me an e-mail, just thank God you’re an over-comer, and pray for those who are still on the front lines of this battle with chaos every day.
But, for those who ARE battling these issues—I ask you again:
What do you WANT?
I believe I know your answer. You WANT to realize the dream you had when you chose to own your own business—the dream of financial independence that would afford you the freedom to do those things you always wanted to do, but could never find the time. Things like owning a farm in the country, or building your dream house, writing a book, traveling, more time for your hobbies; maybe doing some type of ministry, or working with nonprofits to help the underprivileged. Did you give up on those dreams? Okay, so—what do you WANT?
We often get calls about our software, articles and books, because I profess to know how to gain control over a business through “systemization.” Fact is, over more than 20 years we have tested and proven that IT WORKS! Yes, I also had to fight the demons of self-doubt, the naysayers and the in-your-face criticism. Even in recent years, with the downturn in the economy, those “demons” reared their ugly heads again and I had to back-burner some more exciting projects to rejoin our troops on the front lines. I’m thankful to report now, that with prayer and recommitment to dealing with those challenges head-on, we’re still in the game.
I do understand that business owners are looking for a magic bullet, but “magic” begins by understanding your very real GOALS…knowing what it is you really WANT for all your efforts...and making a total COMMITMENT to do whatever it takes to make your business the very best it can be.
If that’s going to happen, you must WANT to make a total commitment to systemizing your company or organization, by developing written SOP's (Standard Operating Procedures) for every process in your business.
You’re already in some pain, or you wouldn’t be seeking a remedy for your business. And, if you call on me or anyone to help fix it, I would tell you to get past the pain. Nothing that is worthwhile and meant to last happens with little to no real effort on your part.
What do I want? That your commitment to implement great systems in your business would give you the peace of mind and satisfaction of having all the tools you WANT (no chaos in your business), for ongoing success!
Did I mention? Great systems work!