Being a sign company owner for over 20 years has been a blast. No, I didn’t say it has always been but fun, but I would not trade the journey thus far for anything. I have compiled a short list that should help you through your eventful journey in our industry.
1. Focus on you – I know you are saying, “Wait a minute… I thought this was a list of things to help my business.” Let me assure you, if you are like me and multiplied thousands of others in our market, you need to focus on you first. The sign business is a very demanding business for the entrepreneur and it will take a toll on the health and well being of the owner. Make sure you take care of the generator (you) so there will be enough fuel in the tank for those stressful times when you are trying to meet a deadline or dealing with a tricky installation. Here are a couple of things you can do to keep you rocking along.
Drink plenty of water… not coffee 🙂 I love coffee as much as the next guy… but you have to keep the body lubricated with water. Coffee usually contains caffeine which is a diuretic that will eliminate water from the body. So, for every cup of coffee you drink, you will need to drink 3x that amount in extra water. Believe me, I’ve tried it! Drink the extra water and see how much better your brain will function when working on some complicated artwork.
Get plenty of sleep – Nothing good happens after 11pm. If you are not handling some kind of critical business, turn off the TV and get some rest. There are tons of magical chemical things that happen during sleep that totally boost your performance. Good sleep = Good results
Exercise – “But, I don’t have time to exercise.” Bologna! You don’t have time to not exercise! Once again there are tons of studies that show the benefits of exercise on your mental acumen not just your physique. Do your bottom line a favor and exercise.
2. Balance – Bottom line is the things that need to be fixed in your business are the things that need to be fixed with you.
Be present in every area of your life. When you work… WORK. When you play… PLAY. When you have family time… BE THERE. I believe it is our responsibility to fulfill our God-given potential, and we cannot do it without addressing the WHOLE.
3. Fire a customer – “What! You want me to do what? – How can I boost my business by getting rid of my customers?” Yep, fire a difficult customer. I’m not talking about demanding customers. Demanding customers keep you on your toes and help you develop higher levels of customer service which will help the business overall. I’m talking about customers that are absolutely unreasonable. They produce almost all your headache and actually produce no profits because of the extra time and effort they steal from you and the business. You must fire them. Calmly explain to them that you will no longer do business with them. Be honest and calm.
I had a customer that was terrible, unruly, and unreasonable. This person would swear at everyone in the shop and speak to all of us like we were dogs. Believe it or not, after I fired this customer, they made an about-face in attitude and action and then became an excellent long term customer.
I hope this post will offer someone boost of confidence or a kick start on to something great!
Keep pressing toward the mark.