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STOP Trying to Grow

We walked into the establishment starving.  The waitress showed us to a table and both my husband and I headed for the restrooms.

The garbage in the restroom was overflowing and when I walked by the kitchen, I noticed that the floors were not very clean. When I got back to my table, I could see Cheerios all over the floor and the remnants of someone else’s lunch all over both of the chairs at the table we were seated at. Something green was oozing all over the seat and looking at the filth made my stomach uneasy.

I looked at my husband and said, “Let’s get out of here, this place is filthy.”

This restaurant came highly recommended by a few people we knew and that was our first impression.

Two days later, we went back.

We went back out of necessity.

We were meeting a friend for breakfast and the only place that was open that served gluten-free options was this place, so we decided to give them a second chance.

It was clean and the food and service was excellent.  We had a fantastic meal, our waitress was attentive and from my vantage point, everything was shiny and clean.

So what went wrong? What happened the last time we were there?

The answer is simple. The team stopped paying attention to the details because they got busy.  Instead of cleaning the table and the Cheerios all over the floor, obviously dropped by a young child, they tried to rush their next customers to a table and what they didn’t anticipate is those customers would dash.  They didn’t notice the mess or they assumed we wouldn’t.

They were too busy for the volume of business they had to maintain their reputation.

We left the establishment because it was dirty and our first impression was bad.

It was a snapshot in time, just like the way your team treated your customer last week when they were rushing to meet a deadline was, or the way you responded (or didn’t) to that last email you got from a prospect.

Everyone wants to grow and build the biggest and most successful business around, but here’s what I want you to do…

Slow down, figure out how to be successful where you are right now, and how to replicate that success as you build.

A few weeks ago, someone on my team respectfully asked that we not onboard any new Done for You clients or new website projects until the new year because our team was swamped. As much as it pained me to tell some people the earliest we could start was January, I understood we would be risking our business reputation to do otherwise.

Growth is important but not at the cost of your reputation. Click To Tweet
Pay attention to the details, figure out why your customers are leaving, and where your team can do a better job. Fix where you’re at before you scale, crash and burn.

In business, you don’t always get a second chance.

When was the last time you realized you needed to slow down in your business? Leave your comment below.

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