Change is constant. Through the generations there has always been continuous change in business, education, technology, and as a society how we think. Yet with all the vast change some things remain the same as it is part of the human structure. If you talk with an adult older than you, your grandparents or great grandparents, you would learn of a very different period in history. Whether it was furniture, clothing or a wash machine, things were made to last. The intention was to purchase something that was well made with enduring quality and value. Something that would last a long time. Something with excellence built in.
Everything was about excellence. Produced and serviced with pride. It wasn’t just about the latest and greatest to dazzle the eyes.
Excellence today is being redefined. As a CEO, president or business owner, you need to determine as part of your company’s vision and mission statement what the definition of excellence is. Specifically: excellence in product; excellence in service; excellence in work culture, leadership and really, everything you do. Excellence should be at the center of your company’s reason to exist within the framework of addressing your customers needs.
Here’s why excellence in business is key to success:
Let’s start by asking this question…
If the standard of excellence is throughout your company, what happens?
Answer: There will be customers that buy. Those customers will tell other customers about the excellent experience. The cycle of new and repeat business will be continuous.
That’s the obvious part of why excellence in business is key to success.
What may not be so obvious is people will want to work for your company because they know of the excellence in reputation. As a hiring manager, you will have more and better candidate options when job positions are open. Employees will be happier in the work environment and have a good work ethic. They will want to produce excellent results for the customers or clients. It will be a more harmonious atmosphere of everyone working towards the same goals. Which results in higher productivity, more profits and less stress on you as you manage the daily operations of the business.
CEOs, Presidents And Business Owners: Paint A Picture Of Your Business Vision
Excellence in business begins with you, the CEO, president or business owner, and the vision you have for your company.
The challenge is putting your vision into action and being able to articulate it, so others can relate.
- Can’t paint a picture of your vision for the business
- Can’t verbalize it
- Can’t communicate it
… then how can you expect your management team, employees and customers to understand it?
Many people go into business without a crystal-clear vision which results in not fully knowing or understanding what the business is all about. There must be a purpose to the establishment of the company. Otherwise, it will ultimately fail.
Your business begins and ends with having a business vision; one that includes excellence.
Always ask yourself:
How can the vision be translated accurately to co-workers and customers?
- What is my business all about?
- What customers does the business need to reach?
- What is the business really selling? What problem does it solve?
- What is the unique point of difference with the company?
- What do I want from the business this year? Next year? Two years? Five years?
You don’t have to have specific plans down to the very second of every day, but you do have to see where it is you want to go.
If you just show up every morning at your business with the intention of selling something but with no clear direction, hoping business will just come to you, that is a business plan waiting for disaster.
If you can’t articulate the vision for your business on a daily basis then you are in real trouble before you even begin the day.
The vision for the company must be broken down into the simplest possible forms to be communicated to others. If you can’t communicate the vision to others in a concise way, success will be harder if not impossible to achieve. People will go about the day doing their own thing, creating their own vision rather than integrating your vision.
Everyone needs to go in the same direction. That’s part of your role as a CEO, president and business owner to take a group of people and have them understand exactly what needs to be accomplished, understand the vision, understand the goals and then cohesively move in the same direction. Don’t forget to follow up throughout the day, every day, on what needs to be done. When you do everything comes together like a puzzle into a clear picture of business success.
If you don’t maintain the vision and remind those you employ about the importance of excellence, then eventually you will start to say to yourself:
- What happened?
- Why aren’t we being successful?
- Why is there so much chaos and stress every day?
I can answer that for you. Chaos comes from a lack of understanding. It starts with your business vision. Implementing your business vision. Hiring people with the right attitudes and skillsets. Then equipping your workforce with the right information to do their jobs at a high-performance level.
As a CEO, president or business owner take the time necessary to paint the picture in your mind of where to go with your company. Confidently know what your vision is.
Then ask yourself:
- How am I going to get there?
- Who do I need to surround myself with?
- What do I need for office equipment, vehicles, etc?
Play it all out in your mind.
Then take the time to move it from your mind onto paper or screen. It doesn’t have to be 100 pages in length. Just two, three or five pages will do. Otherwise, you get lost in the words and not in the vision for excellence.
- Where you want to go
- What you want to do
From time to time, perhaps as frequent as once a week, look at your vision statement and real time current business results to see if you are meeting the goals. What is being met and what is missing the mark? Think about what needs improvement to continue the path of business excellence.
Are You Making Time For Success In Your Business?
Here’s a timeless example of excellence:
Have you seen the movie, Apollo 13 with Tom Hanks? Every time this movie is on cable I watch it. I also have it recorded so I can view it any time. If you have never had an opportunity to see this film, definitely find time to watch it from beginning to end. An extremely well done film. But it’s really a story about excellence – and never giving up.
To recap the story line for you: This true account is about the Apollo 13 crew on their way to the moon when one of the oxygen tanks suddenly and unexpectedly blew up including the side of the spacecraft. The defect had happened many months before during the manufacturing process. A wire sparked and caused the side of the spacecraft to blow off. The crew had not a perceived chance in the world to survive. Nothing like this had ever happened. The crew didn’t have enough oxygen. Nor did they have enough electricity. They didn’t have enough of anything.
The unparalleled events inspired the engineers at NASA. Everyone went into action and invented previously unperceived ways to bring the astronauts back home to Earth. The NASA engineers and other teams brought in for this event worked tirelessly, against the clock, to create procedures, to go around systems, to rethink what really happened, to stay extremely focused on the problem with the result being an amazing miracle of a safe return.
How does the story of Apollo 13 relate to your business?
It is first, and foremost, a true story of excellence. How the impossible can be turned into reality by having a “never give up” belief and attitude. Never wavering for a moment that the impossible is possible if you think it through. It’s about the human spirit.
Business is about people. Human to human relationships. Helping each other to be the best we can all be.
As business people we get so tied up in the day, so lost and confused sometimes by all that is swirling around us and in our heads that we don’t take enough time to think.
The management and employees at NASA dedicated themselves to saving those three astronauts by focusing on the unbelievable task presented to them. They had no choice and were determined not to lose the crew of the spaceship.
- Am I making time for success in my business?
- Am I determined enough for success?
- Do I allow the business to get in the way of MORE success?
- How much time do I spend every day/every week thinking about being MORE successful?
- Have I become complacent?
- How much time do I spend analyzing exactly what’s going on with sales, marketing, employees, customer service, current business problems?
Chances are you don’t often ask yourself these questions or spend time just thinking; opening your mind. You are not making time for MORE success.
Because the day flies by and before you know it, you’re home for the night. You’re exhausted from the day and putting out fires. It’s Monday then it’s Friday. It’s January then it’s December. And you really haven’t given much thought to success. You’re just trying to get through the day no matter how successful you already are – you can always be MORE successful. To do so, involves focused, dedicated time to thinking; expanding upon your business vision and definition of excellence in business.
It has been my observation that the most successful CEOs, presidents and business owners:
- Understand their business
- Understand the people who work at or are associated with the business
- Set aside time every day to think about how to make the business better; to make it MORE profitable
If you’re not going to make the business profitable then there is no point in being in business.
Business is about making a profit. Everything else is motivation.
I often hear business people say:
- I want to be in business because I can do it better than other companies.
- I want to be my own boss.
- I want to make more money.
- I want to change the world.
All those words are about what motivates you to be in business for yourself.
Remember: Being in business is about making a profit.
- Am I looking into the future?
- Am I directly dealing with business problems?
- Am I anticipating the needs of the business?
- Am I surrounding myself with the best possible people?
- Am I motivating and providing on-going training for employees?
- Do I take time each day for success or do I just “go to work”?
If you answered the above question with” “Just working” then you don’t have a true business. Instead, you just have a job. You’re an employee more than a business owner or a leader.
Remember: Leaders lead.
Employees can make a very nice living but will never ever attain the wealth and success that a CEO, president or business owner can over the years.
That’s why excellence in business is so important to your success.
May you have the best business year ever!
To your success!
Business expert and strategist, Howard Lewinter, guides – focuses – advises CEOs, presidents and business owners throughout the United States across a wide variety of industries, to MORE success – MORE profit – less stress. Business people trust Howard’s vast business knowledge, intuitive insight and objective perspective to solve business problems and issues. Get MORE from your business. Talk business with Howard: 888-738-1855.
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