you can have results or excuses- not both
“there has never been a more urgent time in retail to be FIT”
This is my personal mantra and one of the reasons for writing, sharing, and provoking thought and conversation. But what does it mean to be FIT in business and retail right now?
My first thoughts are similar to those in that we think of in being physically fit- we need to be lean, agile, effective, productive, consistent, and “experience based” (think Soul Cycle) all while delivering exceptional results. As a retail leader, you run a multi- million-dollar business that requires you to have an extensive list of skills that shift from day to day as priorities change.
But in order to achieve the goals you want, either at work or in the gym, this is what I know for sure…. you can have results or excuses. Not both.
One of the challenges today in retail is that our potential excuses are being widely documented and have become a common language in the industry …. lack of traffic, customers shopping on line, the level of service in brick/mortar retail has destroyed us, too many stores, changing generational shopping behaviors- the list goes on. Does that mean that we just sit back and let things happen? Whatever is negatively impacting your business today, are you going to make excuses or get results?
Based on my experiences, and the amazing people I meet and spend time with every day, as leaders we love great results, we are willing to fight- to put in the time and extra work to make it happen. We are developing a tribe that can push through these challenges, keep the teams motivated, all while doing it with kindness.
To support your journey of success, I would like to share 4 simple tips that might help you get the results you want:
1. take responsibility
This is the foundation of success. Whatever your goal may be, you are going to struggle to achieve it unless you take responsibility for it. When you accept responsibility for the situation/team/business and learn to focus on the things which you CAN control, you will find it very easy to avoid making excuses when things go wrong.
Accept responsibility for the things you do and the things you fail to do. Even when events outside of your control occur, identify the things which you can change to get a better result next time.
2. focus on simple time management
Most excuses occur after the fact. For example, something has to go wrong before you point out that it’s not your responsibility. This is particularly evident in the field of time management. Simple time management is about identifying the most important tasks and focus on completing them. If you then have spare time, you can focus on tasks of lesser importance. Sounds simple, but it is hard to do daily.
3. consider every day as a training ground
When you start to regard every day as a training ground, setbacks are painted in a new light. Failure to achieve your goals provides an amazing opportunity to learn from your mistakes. When you implement what you learn, you achieve much better results. With this attitude, you begin to see failure as an essential part of your education as a leader.
Learning from these failures conditions you and makes you stronger. Adversity in business is a way to become smarter, stronger, more resilient, experienced and skilled. Next time you experience a setback; avoid making excuses and seek out the lesson to be learned.
4. remember the long-term goal- but celebrate the small wins along the way
If you were to focus solely on your long-term goals, you might feel overwhelmed by the size of the goal and the fact that the deadlines, financial goals, KPI’s, all seem so far away. That is why you must break your long-term goals down into smaller ones that you can achieve more quickly, allowing you to feel like you have accomplished something. And celebrate each win!
It’s up to you to keep learning, improving and evolving yourself to the next level, but it is important to understand that results don’t happen overnight. It takes time, determination, commitment and consistency, over the long-term. You will experience moments of failure, disappointment, and frustration.
As long as you keep learning from your mistakes and experiences, and you commit to mastery, you will break through and achieve your goals. Always remember that your mind is the most powerful tool that you possess . If you change your mindset, you change your results.
Never give up, and you will be hard to beat.