Your biggest fear should be….Nothing
by George Zeeks
The three biggest fears are Spiders, Snakes, and the fear of heights. The next one is listed as
- The fear of situations in which escape is difficult.
- This may include crowded areas, open spaces, or situations that are likely to trigger a panic attack
Interesting, “The fear of situations in which escape is difficult”. It’s meant to mean a physical escape, but what if we twisted this to include an emotional escape. A huge section of the population does not like confrontation and actively tries to avoid it. How does that apply to the shop owner? For some of you it’s an everyday thing. If you own a business, a lot of you are stuck within the walls of your shop and if the possibility for confrontation is within those same walls how can you escape? Let’s throw some situations against the wall and see how many stick. How about the tech’s are making more money than you are but you’re afraid to change the compensation plan. Then we could mention that your staff is not doing what you want them to but you’re hesitant to say something because they might leave you. These are just two “situations” that you find yourself in and the fear of having a shop without a crew is too much to bear, so you do nothing. Now of course the life that you have is not the life that you want but you feel trapped. Read on and let’s see if we can expose those fears for what they really are, imaginary.
What do you do if you’re afraid of snakes? You avoid places where you might see a snake. If you’re afraid of heights, you probably will not stand on the ledge of a ten story building. The key is avoidance. You avoid the situations that could possibly trigger your fears. Many of the shop owners that I work with deal with these exact problems mainly by avoiding them and rationalizing some reason that allows them to justify the decision. The problem is that by using the faulty logic to make yourself feel better, you can’t improve your shop, the profitability or your culture.
The first step to stop making excuses for what is going on. I know it’s hard cause I’ve been in the same position that you may find yourself in. Everyone deserves to be able to make a decent living, so when I say you need to change the compensation that change has to be fair to all parties. The problem comes when the staff is overpaid and making more money than the shop can afford for the amount of work being done. We see it all the time and the two most likely outcomes are the shop going under or fixing the pay plan. Look at it this way, if the only reason your staff is working for you is the paycheck then you already have issues. Ask yourself what you are doing to help make them better at their job? Do you offer training? Do you have a plan to develop each employee so they feel that working for you is good for their future? Do you praise them when they do a good job? When people leave to go work somewhere else, money is rarely the only reason or even the biggest part of the reason. If your answer to the above questions was no then you need to work on those items as well as a new pay plan.
What if your staff is not doing the things that you want? Well, are the items reasonable? Have you discussed them with the staff and asked for their feedback? Have you set a clear standard of what you expect and then help people accountable to it? One of the worst things is to come up with rules, put them in place and then ignore them. Just hoping that something good will happen doesn’t get the job done. Once you know what you want, have you discussed it with the crew, gotten their feedback and suggestions, then you put it into place and hold everyone accountable. That includes you by the way. Living with a situation that is making you miserable is just no way to live. Feeling like you’re a hostage to your own shop is crazy.
Here’s a big part of the problem. You probably can’t fix this yourself. Your Coach can help you with a fair compensation plan. Together you can do the math to have achievable standards for the production of the crew. You can both sit down and walk through how this transition is going to take place. This includes preparing for a member of the staff leaving. It’s not the end of the world and if things have been bad long enough, it’s most likely going to happen. You’re not in this alone but you have to recognize what is real and what is an excuse. If at the end of this you find yourself wondering if you should be doing something different, then you probably should. Talk to your Coach or you can talk to me. Either way, we are here to help you reach for your dreams.