It happens to professional athletes, weightlifters, REALTORS® and real estate team leaders. Regardless of how well established or successful your achievements were in the past at some point you will likely see progress stall – this is referred to as a plateau. It follows that you simply can’t keep doing the same thing and expect the results to keep skyrocketing. You may be experiencing this in your business, where you were hitting or even overachieving your targets; then suddenly things just flat-lined.
This may seem like a five bell alarm, but realistically it’s just a wake-up call to alert you to make a few changes to start the ball rolling again. It was Einstein’s definition of insanity that stated “you can’t keep doing the same thing over and over and over the same way and expect a different result”. If a business does not continue to grow it risks being sidelined and left behind as the market around it changes. So, it’s time to shake things up, tweak your plan and watch the outcome change.
There are a number of specifics to examine and I’ve listed some key areas:
If your business has experienced steady growth, chances are that you have expanded your workforce. Excellent communication throughout the entire organization involving both delegation and details is crucial; every team member must fully understand their role, their responsibilities and whom they are accountable to.
This is a two-way street – the entrepreneur must completely trust their management and their team, and they in turn must fully trust their team leader. When team members can’t trust their leader not to abuse their authority they will look for opportunities elsewhere. When leaders don’t trust their team they become micro-managers looking over everyone’s shoulders and second-guessing every detail, this can also prompt good talent to walk out the door directly to your competition.
Every system needs an overhaul at some point, and your business system is no different. The best systems build on the strengths of the complete team and contain the hardcore structure the team needs to effectively achieve results. Input from team members who work with the systems on a daily basis can expose areas that are weak and need revamping, and that is a good place to start. It also enforces communication and fosters trust.
A plateau can be caused by something as simple as dwindling motivation within the team. Entrepreneurs are self-starters that run on their own built-in warp drive, so it is often difficult for them to understand that not everyone is like them. If your team seems to be low on motivation, you will need to get creative and rev them up, through a team building experience, a contest or another incentive and don’t forget the wow-factor.
Time For Change
A resistance to change or continuing with the same old approach is often the culprit behind plateaus. The marketplace is constantly and rapidly evolving; your business must adapt or become extinct. What worked so well yesterday just won’t work today. The adage “if it ain’t broke – don’t fix it” is grossly outdated and would be more aptly replaced with “fix it before it breaks”. Keep your team and your business model proactive and current and in a perpetual state of evolution.
Plateaus rob you of success and make hard work worthless. They are invisible enemies, slowly infiltrating your business, but they are hidden in plain sight. With the right strategies, knowledge and foresight you can avoid plateaus and keep your business on a continual upward trend.
Ken Goodfellow is the CEO, Chairman of Goodfellow Coaching. For over twenty years ‘Coach Ken’ and Goodfellow Coaching has coached over 600 teams, and will take this insight and knowledge to Chicago for the Millionaire Team Summit on July 12th and 13th.
For more information, visit www.goodfellowcoaching.com.