I’m sure not the first to say this, and I won’t be the last, but here goes: Didn’t 2013 go by fast? Every year we all seem to say the same thing: the year went by way too quickly.
Thank goodness though, there’s always a New Year for us to get done what we didn’t get done last year. But what if there wasn’t a New Year, or more time? What if by not doing what you know you should do, your business would be compromised in ways that might end it? Why would anyone want to take that chance? You gamble in a casino, not with the health of your business.
Being hesitant in implementing what needs to be done for whatever reasons is a gamble. The stakes are higher for some and less for others, but they all have a consequence; that’s the bottom line. You can’t be shy in today’s retail world by waiting. Most customers won’t wait around while you fix what needs to be fixed; they’ll just fold and move on. Problems or issues won’t fix themselves either, or disappear of their own volition. We’ve got to make it happen. And making it happen is the challenge.
Positive change does not start with, “I was going to do that, but ...” or “I know we should be doing this, but ...” or “I thought we were doing it, but ...” What we were going to do doesn’t count.
So here’s the challenge (I’m trying to stay away from that resolution word): Let’s make those positive changes this year. I believe most of us know what we need to do. Change can seem so overwhelming at times, that’s where the reluctance comes in. You don’t have to do everything at once, and you shouldn’t. What if you were to pick out three or four actions or procedural changes that would give you the biggest bang for the buck to start? Maybe it’s better follow-up in every department or a written sales process that’s followed by everybody. Implement and monitor with goals and accountability one procedural change a quarter (that’s not overwhelming) and then move on to something else.
We all are in one of the most exciting businesses on the face of the planet. Most of us wouldn’t imagine doing anything else. I still get excited with new models or remembering the old ones. The smell of castor oil or an afternoon ride with friends is still the best.
At the end of this year instead of, “I was going to, I knew we should, and I thought we were,” let’s make it, “I did, we did, and we are going to make this the most successful year we’ve ever had” by doing what we need to do, what’s right for our businesses. Welcome to 2014, folks. Let’s rock!
Mark Mooney is director, retail performance for Pied Piper Management Company LLC, a Monterey, Calif., company that works with motor vehicle manufacturers and dealers to maximize performance of dealerships. One of Pied Piper’s most popular services for the powersports industry is Pied Piper Prospect Satisfaction Index (PSI) sales mystery shopping to help turn more motorcycle shoppers into motorcycle buyers.