Business Consultant and High Performance Coach Mikkel Pitzner

If You Always Do …

If You Always Do What You’ve Always Done

You’ll Always Get What You’ve Always Gotten

If you are less than satisfied with your results that you have been achieving lately – say last year or even the last few years, then it’s time to review what it is that you are actually doing.

This goes for your personal results as well as for the results obtained in your business if that be the case.

Even if what we are doing used to be a good avenue for building our businesses, then invariably we find some day that it no longer seems to provide us with the growth we used to see – and ultimately we may find that our results are less than stellar if in fact not downright dissatisfying.

The world keeps evolving, but sometimes we individually or our businesses do not really keep up and evolve too and some day we realize that our personal results or our businesses are going nowhere or perhaps even have been dwindling over a period of time.

When finding yourself in such a position, it’s high time to look at what it is you are doing. If you find that you are doing what you have always been doing, then that may very well be the reason for your troubles. You simply have not evolved while those around you have or if nothing else your customers may have.

In my capacity of professional Board of Directors Member and in the role of High Performance Coach as well as in my role as a Business Consultant I often see this problem scenario in people’s personal results or in their businesses and I see it with myself and sometimes in own businesses.

Yet, it’s remarkable when I point this out, just how resistant people are to adopt any changes and it’s remarkable the length they will often go to with the excuses they will make up for avoiding implementing any changes whatsoever. Yes, human beings are not often very thrilled about making changes of any sort. We may say we wish for changes in our lives and our results and yet, we are so very resistant to actually commence doing something new or to go in a different direction – personally as well as professionally.

Business Consultant and High Performance Coach Mikkel Pitzner

But as the quote goes

 

If You Always Do What You’ve Always Done

You’ll Always Get What You’ve Always Gotten

 

How do you expect to achieve better results if you just keep doing the same thing?

We all heard the quote attributed to Albert Einstein that says:

 

The definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result

-Albert Einstein

 

Usually, I find that people and business owners will say to me something along the lines that “we’ll just do more of we have done” and then they hope that they will see more results.

It’s akin the people who, when constantly finding themselves with more month at the end of the money, finally come to the conclusion that they need to find a solution and then come up with something “hey, I’ll take a second job” or “I’ll work some extra hours”.

What is wrong with this picture is, that they do not stop up and review their value proposition. What value do they as an individual bring to the table? What value do they as a business bring to the market space?

Now, in contrast, I have had numerous experiences of successful outcomes and changing of trajectories of results when one has stopped up and reviewed how one could do things differently. Sometimes all it takes is small changes and other times you may find that you need to make some radical changes.

For changes in results for your personal achievements, it very often comes down to making some sincere adjustments in your daily routines and habits. It might also be changing things up completely, perhaps even opting for a complete change of direction.

If you have ever done any physical training of sorts, you may well have experienced reaching some plateau at which point it seems your results are stagnant despite how much more training you add on top of what you have been doing. Changing your routines by dropping some of the training you have been doing for some sort of exercise of completely other character and you may soon see renewed improvements come about.

When you have seen lack luster results in your personal income, you may find new opportunities and improved income by completely changing your chosen career.

For a business, sometimes the changes can come about just by restructuring your offerings, pricing, terms and conditions or a combination of same. Other times you may need to go forth with even more drastic resolve.

Is it scary? Yes!

Usually it is scary and often it is extremely scary.

Is it worth it?

Yes!

If you just continue what you have been doing and you haven’t been happy about the results, then you probably aren’t going to be happy with the results going forth. But change it up and you should soon see different results.

Will you see improved results always?

No!

There are no guarantees. You could choose a route that turns out to have catastrophic effects on your results – personally or in your business.

Is it easy?

No! Often it isn’t.

Look, if there were guarantees and if it was easy, you wouldn’t need to be scared and you would just do it – and everybody would be a millionaire.

Personally, I have found myself in this situation more than once – both personally and in business.

In my very first business that I bought, I was looking at our offering to the market. It was my limousine service business, but it could have been a business of any other industry. I wanted to implement some rather drastic changes in our rates along with several other things.

Coming (almost) from outside, I inquired with the highly experienced staff members what they thought of my ideas and was met with huge resistance: “Oh, no, if I did that, I was sure to see all clients flee and lose everything on the floor”.

There were other changes I wanted to see happen, and invariably I found myself met with shot down ideas and negative reception almost no matter what the idea was about.

Ultimately, I got rather tired of the scenario and went ahead with all my ideas and revamped the entire offering. If memory serves me right my smallest price adjustment was about 30% or so in upward direction.

The result?

After my first 14 months, my profit line had improved to the tune of a 32 fold of the result of year leading up to my take over of the business. I don’t really think I lost any clients that I can remember at said point and I believe we even managed to strengthen a lot of our relationships and our positioning in the market.

Most of the staff members incidentally were changed out during that period too.

It was very scary, but it was so worth it.

At another point, our results had stagnated and we seemed to go nowhere and met challenges left and right with our own deliverables and service levels. When it got to a point that seemed it had gotten far enough, I took a very drastic course of action and changed out the entire operational organization with new people.

This was excessively scary, but within the same year our results shot up again.

I wouldn’t normally recommend anything this drastic, but I actually had to do this once more in the time I owned the company. It was frightfully scary both times, but it was so worth it both times and I have always been happy that I did this.

Today, I might take a less dramatic avenue. I’m a little older now and would possibly proceed with more caution and mechanisms of push and pull and so on. But there’s no denying the remarkable changes in results and value of what we delivered when I did this.

But the point is that you might actually get very far in the direction you want to go, if you are willing to take the risk, get out of the comfort zone and try something new. For you as a person, it may be to uproot your path entirely and take a different road. For a business, you may realize, that you may be able make relatively massive adjustments without losing your business on the floor, perhaps even find you ended up strengthening your relations with your clients and come out with hugely improved results

So in conclusion, if you are in a place where you are not too satisfied with your results – personally or businesswise, then consider changing things up – perhaps even a lot.

What daily routines do you need to change? What routines do you need to throw out? What new action steps do you need to incorporate on a consistent and continuous basis?

What new way do you need to take?

Is it scary?

Yes.

But it may very well be worth it!

Would love to hear about your similar experiences or about your current challenges. Comment or shoot me a private message. Let’s keep the conversation going. Thanks for participating, I very much appreciate it.

 

 Business Consultant and High Performance Coach Mikkel Pitzner

 

Mikkel Pitzner is a serial entrepreneur with vast experience of running a multitude of businesses spanning a wide variety unrelated of industries, States, Countries and even Continents. He is a professional Board of Directors Member and serves on several board in privately held companies as well as in publicly traded companies. As a High Performance Coach and as a Business Consultant, he helps respectively people and professionals and businesses vastly improve their results.

Fire Yourself Now

The Time To Fire Yourself

After several years of running your business you may find yourself running low on energy and enthusiasm for the business. You might be taking more and more excuses in for not really handling the bare minimum of chores and responsibilities that you as a leader hold and should upkeep. You might even remove yourself physically and make yourself more and more inaccessible for the employees, colleagues, managers and yes, even customers.

Usually when this happens, it is in connection with the business not developing and not achieving the results that you would wish for. The uphill struggle and the seemingly unending struggles may begin to take a toll on you and strain you mentally and drain you from what’s left of your energy.

But more often than not, the problem is not really the current that seems to go against you or the never ending challenges that seem to heap up against you. No, the problem is usually…

YOU.

It's Time To Fire Yourself

If you stop for a moment and think back over the years, you will more than likely agree with me that there were always struggles, that there were always obstacles along the way. So really it’s usually not that things really have changed much, it’s probably more that you have changed. Or rather your attitude towards the challenges and the business has changed.

When you set out, it probably was a big challenge for you and you were probably met with a huge amount of “tests” from every corner. But you were excited and charged head on. You held your ideas and your vision high and it charged you with energy and stamina and a drive that enthused those around you, your employees and colleagues.

But for whatever reason, you got tired along the way and you dropped the strength to keep pushing through and shining that bright light for the others to follow.

What’s more is, that because of that, you are more than likely a good reason that the business isn’t in fact doing so well and may well be in a limbo and probably even has been for some time.

Yes, the world keeps changing and things become more and more disruptive with greater frequency and impact. But really, most of what you are facing is no more challenging than what you had to face earlier in your career – at a time, I might add, when you were even less experienced and knowledgeable.

The problem is that you haven’t changed. You haven’t developed. You stayed still and remain the same as always.

A business – any business – really does need a leader.

No let me correct that.

A business – any business – really does need Leadership.

People (employees and yes, even the customers) really need a bright shining light that will lead the way. That will take the charge and show the vision and making the claims as to where you as a business are heading. People need someone who will show the strength and courage even when things get tough and when obstacles seem insurmountable.

If you business is seemingly going nowhere (or worse going backwards) then you need to take a long look at yourself as the leader.

It’s often not really the business that is the trouble. It really is the leader.

You as the leader holds the ultimate responsibility (well, ultimately the responsibility rests with the board of directors and the owners of the business), so if you are not up for the task any more, then now is the time to remove yourself from the business. You are no longer serving it well and you are actually hurting its chance of survival at worst or chances of getting decent results any time soon.

In fact, you are already a bit late in making this decision to remove yourself and you really should have done so long ago.

By the time you have reached this point and have seen this described development of your business (or rather lack of) and you recognize what I’m stating here, then it’s probably been already way too long like that. You have probably, in fact carried on with this state of affairs for several years. And everybody has suffered.

That’s right, everybody has suffered along the way. The business has suffered, which can clearly be seen from the results and your books. The employees have suffered, for the have been left wanting for better leadership and better inspiration and the lacking results have probably caused lacks of wage development or possibly even decreases in compensation and other benefits. The atmosphere within the company has more than likely suffered.

And along the way more signs have shown up that tells the same tale of a business going down. Tell tale signs of employees claiming more sick days, dwindling sales, more mess in and around the work space, and employees assuming less and less responsibility on their own.

But it all might not be too late.

Changes are needed. Sometimes radical changes.

The best recommendation might well be to start by removing yourself from the position of leadership and instate someone capable. Yes, that’s right. The best cause of action might well be to fire yourself.

This really is no different that when companies are bought and you often see that the management are fired. They are usually fired to make way for new changes, better growth and more speed at which to reach new and higher results.

Yeah, you may not really like to hear this and you may not really like to have to face this. But trust me, you are not really very happy where you are at for if you were your business more than likely would be showing it via better results and better growth. But the great thing is, that once you have fired yourself and instated capable management in your place, you can let go of a lot of the daily hassles and soon you will find new streams of ideas and energy leap into your mind and body and can actually now begin to add much more value once again into the business via your conversation with the new management, strategy meetings and possibly board meetings.

Your quality of life is very likely to improve and the results of the business likewise. Of course rightening the business and bringing it back on the course it should be at may sometime take a bit of time. It’s sometimes kinda like a supertanker in that way. Change the steering now and it will take a bit before it will actually take effect. Unfortunately to add to that pain, it is often not easy to find the right candidate to take over the management, but trust me, more often than not, the biggest problem is just that you are clinging onto it for too long and too hard.

But imagine for a moment a situation and a new lease of life in which you remain a business owner, but have removed yourself from the daily nitty gritty chores of the business and really just work on it from the perspectives that are more concerned with the vision and the strategies of how to get there. But you leave it in the hands of someone else who more than likely actually are very capable and who has the enthusiasm and the drive. You will be awarded time and freedom to seek other interests of yours and explore where were precluded previously because of the workload. And you might even find renewed energy and strength to expand into new business ventures and exploits.

Yes, if any of the above rings true, it may be about high time that you fire yourself and remove yourself from the daily operations of the business. More likely than you might wish to hear, you are in fact the cause of the stand still of the business and your are in the way of its progress. Remove yourself and achieve a better quality of life and recommence working on yourself, for obviously, you actually need to progress and evolve too – and you haven’t.

The time to fire yourself is long overdue, so now go do it.

Leadership

Are You Throwing Away Perfectly Good Money?

Still Whining About Lack Of Business? Are You Leaving Money On The Table Too?

Every day I see it and even experience it. Businesses that are so hungry for more business and more revenues, but that are at the same time turning their backs on it.

It baffles me all the time. But every day I see it and experience it. Usually several times a day with a multitude of businesses of any industry.

Here’s a couple of recent examples:

I recently bought a new home and moved in. Along with the move you go through all the things you want and need. New updates, painting jobs, changing out carpets or installing hardwood floors, changing rooms, altering for taste or updating styles or just upgrading old appliances and what not.

So one of the installations my new house has, is that of a full blown sprinkler system in case there’s a fire. Kinda neat and a first for me to have in a private home. It’s especially nice since the sprinkler outlets are “hidden” and therefore don’t look industrial and awful. Now,  the sprinkler system is of course hooked up with sensors and an alarm system that goes to nearest fire station and the sheriff’s office. Kinda cool too.

Since the system is already in place and already has all communications and sensors to it, it feels natural that you might want to expand upon that to include everything for your personal safety too, such as a personal alarm (handy for when the wife is home alone) or for burglary alarm systems etc. for when nobody’s home.

As I took over the house I had to go through the motions of getting all accounts turned over to me and registering me and my family with all the relevant suppliers and vendors. It also meant that I had vendors come out and check everything was fully function-able and this gave me the perfect opportunity to explore more possibilities, system upgrades and updating equipment where necessary.

For the sprinkler system that was the same too and a very nice gentleman came to our house. We signed the papers and he went through the entire installation and checked everything was up and running perfectly and as it should.

His visit gave me the opportunity to explore what else could be done now that we had the system in place and we quickly found that we could in fact expand the system to include alarms and applications way beyond the sprinkler system with relatively little fuss and just a bit more investment, which of course would lead to a nice monthly increase in the revenue to the supplier company (a revenue stream that then would go on and on for probably a long, long time)

Now the house does have a separate alarm system, but joining the sprinkler system with upgraded alarm system would enable us to drop one of the systems and drop an expense, saving us a monthly costs, while yet as described above leave the supplier with increased revenues.

The visit from the sprinkler company concluded with the agreement that they would send me a quote for upgrading the installation to my requirements and wishes and I was all set for it. The costs up front would be bare-able and the monthly expense going forward would be less than running two installations and the end solution would provide more security and not least a greater provision of these elements for the family.

But here’s the thing. I never heard back from the representative.

Now, I could easily follow up and get this in motion again, but I’m too busy on other things or simply forget to do so when phones are open or whatever. It doesn’t really matter what my excuse is. And of course, between you and me, I’m kinda like, if they don’t care more about me as a client then forget it, I will place my money with someone who do care.

For a situation like this, I’m a relatively eager and easy customer and all you would need to do is to place in front of me a decent and fair offer and I would probably put a YES to it straight away and give you my money.

Handsome young man throwing money

The other example I wanted to bring you is that of a printing service. Along with our moving it just happens that I also started a number of new businesses. For one of these I was seeking a printing service that would be able to make me a very nice upscale stationary and the like. To perform this task, I wished to source a local vendor to support the small local town. I explained everything I was looking for and they went to work.

And then they didn’t.

As I customarily will do, I invited about 3 different vendors to bid for the assignment and to come up with a solution. One hardly responded, which quickly left them dropped out of consideration. But even the others left me wanting. I had to call upon them too many times, instead of them trying to reach out to me to get the order. The final runner up eventually couldn’t really find a solution that would serve what I was looking for and pretty much just gave up.

But a solution is out there and I know where I can get it. But the point of the matter is that they (the vendors I invited) will not be getting the order, nor the order for the 5-6 other new entities for which I also need stationary.

So when I hear businesses that are whining and crying for more business I usually say they need to start by looking at all the business they are turning away already by their actions or if this is the case their in-actions. Usually their whining and complaining are uncalled for if only they would shape up a little.

I could come up with numerous more examples, like the two companies I dealt with in search of new hardwood floors, who also missed out on opportunities dues to lack of follow through and like opportunities I presented to more than one builder for potential add on to the house and the AV companies that didn’t follow through either.

You may be thinking, when reading this, that I might be a terribly difficult customer. But the fact of the matter is, that I’m actually a relatively easy client. I will give space and room for mistakes, delays and what not as long as it’s within reason. I will tell things pretty straight so that you as a vendor will know exactly for what I’m looking for, by when and to what standards and if offered a decent price and good delivery, I will accept and pony up. And I have been known for paying lots of money for solutions and sometimes chosen the more high end route for pretty much anything. So in fact I would venture to say that I’m not just a relatively easy client, I’m actually close to a perfect customer.

The conclusion in all of this is, that there’s so much more business and revenues to be had out there for all sorts of companies. But are you grasping these opportunities? Are you following through? Are you delivering on your promises and even simple deliveries?

If you are still wishing for more business, start by looking at the opportunities you already have and have had. Did you live up to the bare minimums that could have been expected from you?

Better yet: Are you over-delivering and going the extra mile?

If you can answer YES to the last question, then my bet is you can even ask for premium prices and that you can have a very performing business if you don’t already.

I shall discuss the last bit in future post soon for this is another important issue that I find too often people are struggling with. It has to do with pricing. I shall also come back with a discussion of the times when one of my own companies totally failed in its performance due to complete lack of understanding of what needed to be delivered. This one was a service company and the service lacked. It almost cost me the entire company too. But as I said, we shall return to that in future posts soon.

For this post here, I’m curious to learn about your experiences and your views. What do you think? Please comment and engage in this conversation. It would be interesting to see where our conversation together might lead us.