Do you know the difference between producing results versus exerting effort?
One will put clients in your schedule; the other will just make you exhausted. Let me explain…
A friend of mine has an apartment management business. A couple of weeks ago he hired a cleaning service to clean a newly vacant apartment so that he could put it up for rent.
The apartment was in a town about 2 hours from his office and since he was not able to be there he gave the cleaning service instructions as to what to do and then they agreed on a price.
A week or two later he was able to visit the newly cleaned apartment. What he found stunned him.
He discovered that while they had certainly used soap and other cleaning ingredients along with sponges, mops, rags, etc. and they had spent time “cleaning”, the unit just was not clean.
They overlooked grime that easily came off with a thumbnail. In other words, they had exerted effort yet without producing a result called “clean”.
I thought this was a perfect metaphor for the distinctions that all small business owners must stay extremely present to and mindful of.
Am I actually producing the results I want or am I just doing a lot of effort (that in the end is just tiring out and not putting more clients in my schedule or causing me to be more profitable)?
1) Firstly, am I clear about the actual result I am out to produce?
2) Secondly what, if any, are the actions (effort) I need to take to produce those specific results?
Ask yourself these questions about your own business and ask it about the work you are doing with your own clients. What results do they want you to help them realize?
If there is a ton of effort being exerted but results are lacking, maybe its time to reevaluate what you are doing and how you are doing it.
The cleaning crew thought they had done their job and deserved to be paid. But in reality they had not actually produced a clean apartment so why were they congratulating themselves on a job well done. The effort was certainly taken, but if there are no results being produced, then the effort means nothing. This is never more true than when running your own business.
Sometimes it helps to have someone with an experienced perspective take a look at what you are doing and help you determine whether you are spending too much time in efforts but not actually producing the results you want and WHY that is happening. Contact me if you feel this might be the next step for you to take.