Does this sound familiar?
Business is slow, so you launch advertising campaigns and promotions, and work your tail off, hustling to get more business in your door. The next thing you know you’re so swamped you can’t keep up with the orders. So, you stop doing the things that brought in the business because you’re so busy running around putting out fires. You’re stressed out, working nights and weekends. Your spouse files a missing person report. You have to pull up photos of your kids on your smartphone to remind yourself what they look like. You wish for a break. The next thing you know your wish comes true. You get a nice, long break because your customers vanish like a burp in a breeze. Your showroom is as quiet as a graveyard at midnight. Panic sets in.
Once again you launch promotions and start hustling to get new business. And so it goes.
This is a common state of affairs for dealers because most have set up their businesses in such a way that they are forced to ride this nauseating up-and-down rollercoaster:
- They don’t have an ongoing, dependable marketing system in place to create a steady stream of customers, even out the ups and downs, and bullet-proof their business against market downturns.
- They don’t have a delegation system in place. When they get a spike in business, their personal workload spikes. They work longer hours, nights, weekends, and run around with their hair on fire trying to handle it all themselves. Until the spike turns into a dip. Then they panic from the lack of business.
Ironically, an improving economy can make this problem worse. When the economy picks up, rather than leverage this into a permanently higher level of revenue, most dealers burn themselves out trying to stay caught up and then sink back to their old revenue level once the boom is over. No permanent gain. A tempest in a teapot. This happens because most dealers do not own their business; the business owns them.
This problem does not go away just because a dealer generates millions in revenue. I worked with a dealer who did several million annually and paid himself a personal salary of $400,000. But he worked 6-7 days a week, never took vacations, rarely got to spend time with his 2 daughters, and was totally burned out. In spite of a very good income, the business still owned him. He was what I refer to as a “successful slave.”
Within 3 coaching calls, I showed him how to reduce his workload to 40 hours per week or less, no weekends, and take time away from the business. That year he took his daughters on a vacation to Disney World in Florida.
In other words, to be a successful dealer with an Ideal Business and Ideal Lifestyle, generating more money is important, but it’s only half of the recipe for success. You’ve got to have systems in place that create freedom and walk-away power for you, so you can enjoy all that extra money! It’s the difference between you owning your business, and your business owning you.
So how can a dealer leverage seasonal “busy times,” or an overall improvement in the economy, into a permanently higher level of revenue? In other words, how can a dealer go from feast-or-famine to all feast? I’ll cover that in detail next in part two of this series.
To Tons Of Customers!
Jim Augustus Armstrong is The “Coach”
Jim Augustus Armstrong is the President of Flooring Success Systems, a program that equips dealers to double their profits, cut their work hours in half and beat the boxes! Many dealers have totally transformed their businesses and their lives for the better after joining Flooring Success Systems.
See what real, live dealers are saying!