Listen to Howard:
As I say at the start of my radio show: I am always ready to talk business. Are you?
Just like any other day, I’ve been thinking about business. I’ve been reflecting. I’ve been thinking about all of the wonderful CEOs, presidents and business owners that I’ve had the opportunity and pleasure to work with. I realized that this month I’m starting my 24th year advising CEOs, presidents and business owners. How is that possible? How could 24 years have gone by so quickly? In those 24 years I have experienced almost every emotion that you can possibly experience in business with myself and with the business people I advise. Through economic downturns and upturns, the difficulties and successes that come with running a business every day no matter what else may be happening.
But there was one emotion that I never experienced in 24 years. I never, ever thought about quitting, no matter how difficult things were, no matter how challenging they were. I didn’t think that I would ever quit.
Have you ever thought about quitting your business?
I also was contemplating and thinking about why people are successful and why they’re not. Although every successful individual is different – and run their businesses differently, there is still some commonality, one key success factor.
The one success factor every successful CEO, president or business owner shares is: they never, ever think about quitting, no matter what’s going on.
They can be having the worst year, they can lose a great deal of money but they think: Well, I can’t quit. I’ve got to get back up and do this again. I’ve got to make this happen.
Over the years, I’ve known of business people who have been so low that they were living and sleeping in their place of business because they couldn’t afford an apartment. But with will – drive –determination they bounced back to become very successful, very financially comfortable people because they didn’t know what the word ‘quit’ was.
Now, there are many ways that people quit. For example, you can have employees showing up every single day but they’ve actually quit in their mind, just going through the motions of the work day.
So you need to be careful that you’re not showing up on any given day like you’ve already quit. When you quit on yourself, you quit on the business by thinking: I just can’t do this today.
Every day has to be new. Every day has to be fresh. Every day you have to be a leader.
You can’t quit on yourself.
You can’t quit on your employees.
If you have an employee that’s not doing the job well, you’ve got to see if you can turn that employee around. You can’t say: I’m just going to get rid of them. Because if you do then it’s going to create a business problem for you. It’s going to create a business problem because there’s the cost of training a new employee, there’s a cost to everyone understanding what needs to be done, there’s a cost to the relationship with the customer or the client. So you have to say: I’m not going to quit on you! Sit down and let’s talk about why it’s not going well. I am going to coach you; I’m going to help you make it happen.
And of course if it doesn’t happen, as I always say, you’ve got to give people the opportunity to move on, to find something they’ll be successful at.
You can’t quit on your suppliers or vendors. You can’t treat them badly and expect them to treat you well. You’ve got to pay them on time. You’ve got to respect what they do for you. You’ve got to see them as being a vital part of your business.
As a CEO, president or business owner, you can’t quit on anything. You especially can’t quit on yourself – or on your employees or your vendors.
You can’t quit in your mind.
In the 24 years that I’ve guided, focused and advised CEOs, presidents and business owners I’ve realized that business is about people.
It’s about how you think.
It’s about the direction that you’re going in.
It’s about your will, drive and determination. And I use that phrase often – the will, drive and determination, because you have to have it to be successful.
The very successful business people, the people who get so financially comfortable that they don’t have to worry about money, never think about quitting. When a problem comes up they go after that problem. They solve it. They get rid of it. They turn it around and make it positive. And you can, too.
So I want you to always be on guard. I want you to always be thinking about what you need to do next. I always want you to be careful of how you’re presenting yourself to your employees, to your vendors, to the world, to your family and friends.
Don’t go home miserable every single night because you had a bad day at the office. Don’t quit on your family and friends. Make their life pleasant. You can give them all the money in the world – a big house, luxury cars, expensive restaurants… But if you come home every single night and you are an unpleasant person, you’ve quit on them and they’re going to quit on you.
So let’s get this right. Let’s be positive. Let’s start doing that right now in this very moment. Let’s catch ourselves when we’re not being positive.
Remember: With the right attitude, you’ll have more success – more profit – less stress.
And you’ll never think about quitting.