Expect twice as much from others as you expect from yourself. Be shameless. And don’t hold your productivity back by assuming your team won’t or can’t do twice as much as you can. Let go of any fear of consequences. Get used to hearing people say no to you.
Asking for exactly what you want and need by when you most want it, not what you think is reasonable. Create a “same-day” culture around you – where everyone thinks in terms of immediate response, resolution, request fulfilment. It really can work. Just raise standards. And share with the person why what you need is so important and enrol them to help you on-the-spot.
Have a list of people to whom you can immediately delegate tasks, problems, and ideas. Develop a reserve of extra folks, standing by. And properly hand-off new projects, tasks, account abilities within minutes.
Get the information you need immediately. Don’t wait. Don’t be put off. When they say “no,” consider that “no” to be the BEGINNING of the conversation, not the end. Ask to be put on hold, ask for immediate attention or resolution, ask for an exception. If needed, schedule a call-back time when the answer/info will be available.
Cut in half your normal appointment block time. If you schedule 30 minute meetings, cut them back to 15 or 20 minutes. Instant productivity on BOTH sides. Simply box yourself in, time wise. More will get done, usually without stress.
Respond to problems with 3 times as many resources as are needed. The highest levels of productivity occur in Problem-Free Zones. In order to become more Problem-Free, invest time and resources into solving the SOURCE of problems not just “Band-Aiding” them. Make problem-solving an investment in your company, not an expense.
Stop tolerating what you don’t like. Be selfish. Put up with little. Coach and train others to do it your way or to your satisfaction. You can accommodate and compromise, but don’t drop your standards or shrink your boundaries. Productivity and tolerating don’t mix.
Keep your word. Under promise if you have to. Enjoy living on the PLUS side of the performance ledger. Keep the integrity in. Productivity increases naturally in an integral environment.
Beef up systems. The ultimate in productivity is when things occur that you didn’t have to make happen because you set up a system to have them occur. In other words, automate and systemise so that results occur by themselves, through others or by computer. Re-invent ways to handle an increasing flow.
Decline requests. Say no or negotiate when saying yes is going to burden you.
Have Character And Integrity. Character and integrity underpin most successful long-term business relationships. Character is the sum of impressions outsiders have of your business. Integrity is thoughtful and consistent performance in things that shape the external perceptions of your business’ honesty, reliability, sincerity, trustworthiness and respect for customers.
Value Customers First. Profit doesn’t come from sales. Profit comes from customers. Customers react to appropriate recognition and respond with on-going purchases – a concept known as ‘building a lifetime relationship’. If your business doesn’t recognise the lifetime-value of existing customers, you could be spending as much as four to seven times more than you need to on advertising
Advertise Wisely. This is an area where many businesses can really reduce costs, lift sales and increase profits – sometimes all three at once. It’s important to understand which of the many choices available are likely to work best for your business. There may be low cost and simple advertising opportunities right under your nose, going unrecognised!
Encourage Referrals. Word-of-mouth recommendations from genuinely satisfied customers are one of the most credible and inexpensive forms of advertising you can have. Turn your existing customers into ‘believers’ and encourage them to refer their friends, family and acquaintances to your business.
Recognise Inactive Customers. Do you know when customers have become inactive? Do you attempt to recover them? If you can reactivate or, better still, forestall the loss of customers, your profits could soar.
Learn and Do. Unless you refresh your business with new ideas and keep up with change, you risk being outflanked by smart competitors.
Find New Customers. If you’re convinced your existing customers are pleased, and that you understand customer lifetime-values, then the way to increase sales and profits is to find new customers.
Build Alliances. Alliances with other businesses and special-interest organisations can offer worthwhile opportunities to attract new customers and increase sales.
Cut overheads by automating almost everything. Accounting, reporting, voicemail, ordering, fulfilment, customer service, sales.
Cut variable expenses by negotiating with suppliers. If you’re seeking higher profits, you’ll need your suppliers to re-invent themselves too! The smart suppliers will be empowered by your request.
Cut variable expenses by redesigning (re-engineering) how work gets done and how the product is produced. This should be a continual process and second nature to you.
Increase productivity by expecting 50%-100% more from everyone. (Yes, really. THAT much more.) And give them the best tools and training needed to produce more, without stress.
Leverage your strengths by extending the product/service line. If you can easily add supplemental products or customised versions at the same profit margin, your overall profit should increase.
Each quarter, challenge your assumptions about your industry and your company. Profit is ALWAYS temporary. What keeps profits increasing long term is staying in touch with an always-changing marketplace/industry.
Experiment with new ideas, new types of products and new processes. Invest 1% of sales into making mistakes, radical experiments, intuitively-based decisions, think tank getaways – whatever is beyond the most esential points.
Have and hire only employees who continually impress you with their initiative and competence. Let everyone else go. Increasing profits come from great employees, not average ones.
Turn your customer service department into the Research & Development Department of your company.