Is Your Franchise Flying Blind?

EOS Issues

How to Recognize and Address Your Core Business Issues.

Over the past several months we have highlighted the various components within the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS).

  1. Vision
  2. People
  3. Issues
  4. Data
  5. Process
  6. Traction

While each of the 6 components of the EOS Model is a separate entity, they inherently interact with each other in some capacity.  Each individual component needs to be solidly identified if the EOS is going to help the company’s health and growth.

For example, while most companies think that the Issues they are having are unique, in actuality there are only about 25 different Issues that companies have faced since the beginning of time.

Issues: IDS

Let’s examine one company in the news lately that lost close to $1 billion in the market because they failed to handle an Issue properly.  The company in question is, of course, United Airlines.  My purpose is not to get into a debate of the legalities (or illegalities) of what happened, but to merely show you how important it is to go through your own IDS (Identify – Discuss – Solve) for any Issues you might have. Let’s start with what happened within United’s chain of command that broke down so horrifically into a continuing PR nightmare.

From United’s website:  “We are committed to providing a level of service to our customers that makes us a leader in the airline industry. We understand that to do this we need to have a product we are proud of and employees who like coming to work every day.

Our goal is to make every flight a positive experience for our customers. Our United Customer Commitment explains our specific service commitments so that we can continue a high level of performance and improve wherever possible. The commitment explains our policies in a clear, consistent and understandable fashion. We have detailed training programs and system enhancements to support our employees in meeting these commitments, and we measure how well we meet them.”

 

Very interesting…so what happened, what’s the Issue?  From what I’ve read in the various media posts, someone realized that they needed to get 4 crew members to Louisville for the next day.  They had a Process for this, eventually randomly selecting passengers to “volunteer” their seats. It’s still inconclusive as to if that Process called for having police “enforce” that policy.

Part of the process of identifying the key Issue here is to ask a few questions:

  1. Why a PR nightmare?
  2. What happened & What could have been done better to resole this Issue?
  3. Solution:  Analytical tools, Process modification, People

From our February e-newsletter on issues, “Only when the real root Issue is identified should you and your team begin the discussion phase.” What is the real Issue that United is facing?  I’ll suggest a few, but this list is by no means conclusive.

  1. Too much concern for the bottom line that Wall Street requires (Data component)
  2. Too little concern for their paying customers (a direct conflict with their Vision)
  3. Faulty Process
  4. Process driving People, rather than People driving Process

Hopefully, Oscar Munoz, the CEO of United is going to give more than lip service when he states his apology for ‘re-accommodating’ passengers. What happens over the next few weeks will be telling as to how seriously United takes this Issue.

What types of Issues are you facing within your company?  If you would like to have  an Issue Review Session with coach Thom Torode, click here to schedule.

Thom Torode is a NJ based Professional Executive & Business Coach and EOS Implementer. Having owned and operated over 5 different businesses he is currently the Managing Director for Sunrise Business Advisors.   Thom’s expertise includes working with those business owners who have plateaued getting them unstuck and back in growth mode. Additionally, Thom works with both franchisees and franchisors in helping them develop their leadership. Thom is also Director Consultant with BNI. When not helping business owners and their teams create the business and lives they want and need, he can be found following his kids activities.

 

What is Strategic Thinking?

What is Strategic thinking?

How to Develop this Essential Skill

Strategic thinking is a valuable skill to master in both your professional and personal life. Mastering this talent will bring tremendous value to any project you undertake. Many studies have proven that individuals skilled in strategic thinking are also highly effective in leadership positions because of their excellent problem-solving and decision-making approaches to a variety of situations. Leaders who can think strategically, are able to look at an issue systematically, which allows them to identify the impact of their decisions across all departments within and outside the company.

Strategic ThinkingWith the benefits strategic thinkers can bring to a business, you may be wondering how you can hone your strategic thinking skills – or even develop strategic thinkers within your own organization. This is not a task to be taken lightly, this is about the mindset of the individual as well as learned techniques that can be applied to problems.

To better develop this skill, it is important to take time to reflect on the lasting effects of your decisions prior to making them. Ask yourself questions to determine what the final outcome may be – who is, and who will be involved in this decision, what risks are presented, how difficult will it be to arrive at your desired outcome – is it worth it in the long run?

Don’t let tunnel vision prevent you from seeing all angles of a situation. Having too narrow of a focus will restrict the opportunities you have to think strategically about a situation. Strategic thinkers are able to connect the dots between people, ideas, and plans to see a bigger picture that others fail to see. Practice viewing the world as a giant web of interconnected ideas, and you will soon discover that you can easily spot the connection between multiple objects.

While thinking of problems and creating solutions is valuable, it is equally valuable to be able to quickly and confidently arrive at a decision. In order to put your plans in place and your ideas in action you must have the capability of making choices, even if those choices are ones you do not personally agree with. Closing one door and opening another is a situation that leaves many of us paralyzed with fear, but is critical to being strategic.

You will need to make choices about what you will and what you won’t do. It is at this critical juncture that your ability to see and think strategically about a situation is really tested. Don’t let the fear of failure or the risks hold you back if you want to truly look at a situation strategically. All this requires is a deliberate approach in your actions.

In the end, this will require practice – perhaps years of patience. This may not be the easiest of skills to acquire, but the end result will turn from a simply average leader to an exceptional leader, mentor and boss.

Thom Torode is a NJ based Business & Franchise Coach.

He has owned over 5 different businesses and is currently the Managing Director for Sunrise Business Advisors. Thom’s expertise includes working with those business owners who have getting them unstuck and back in growth mode. Additionally Thom works with both franchisees and franchisors in helping them develop their leadership. Thom is also Director Consultant with BNI. When not helping business owners and their teams create the business and lives they want and need, he can be found following his kids activities.

Prevent a Summer Sales Slump

Business managers and sales prospects alike are typically operating in summer mode, creating a summer sales slump

seizing the limited seasonal opportunities for warm weather activities with family and friends and vacation travel. But, of course, you still want your business to enjoy a profitable sales season. Often, suggestions offered for avoiding a summer sales slump are actually fundamental year-round business requirements. However, there are time-proven sales-boosting initiatives for businesses that typically experience reduced sales production during summer months.

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Summer Sales Slump

Create a summer surge

Mine your archives of unclosed sales prospects, and re-engage with these valuable leads.

So much of the sales work is already done. Follow up with these prospects offering an opportunity to wrap up their decision-making before they embark on personal summer plans.

Fourth quarter pre-selling

Summer is the naturally ideal period for setting up fourth quarter sales.

Use the opportunity to cold call, or otherwise create new leads, or work to nurture existing leads. Cultivating leads for closing by year-end is the smart way to avoid a summer sales slump. In utilizing slower summer months to build toward a larger yearly sales total, strong closers can often effectively inspire prospects to make the buying decision during the summer as a convenience. Prospective customers may prefer completing their business transactions with your company in third quarter if a hectic fourth quarter push toward their year-end deadlines is predictable.

Business socializing

Embrace the mood of summer culture by mixing business with seasonal pleasures.

Organize activities to entertain clients and develop mutually beneficial business relationships. These are ideal venues to promote repeat sales. Such strong business connections also generate referral business, which perpetually breeds referral business as each new client referred, in turn, provides referrals.

Manage distractions

Staying on track during vacation season is challenging.

Especially for business professionals with children at home from school for months, personal responsibilities might be much increased during this time of year. With so much going on, burn-out is a heightened risk. The most consistently well-performing business managers and sales professionals are characteristically those who understand the wisdom of relaxing to recharge the mind and body. So, take a vacation at some point during the year. If you don’t vacation during the summer, do take some time outdoors during these months to enjoy the nice weather.  It is prudent for you and your staff not to dismiss this important step. Decompressing periodically sharpens mental focus, contributes to physical health, and helps sustain motivation. These are essentials for maintaining high-intensity sales efforts over a long-term.

Internal contests

Shake up the routine with some outdoor meetings, if practical. Consider creating friendly competition for reaching seasonally applicable performance benchmarks in obtaining new leads, new sales, repeat sales, up-sells, referral leads, etc.

External messaging

Adjust the language of your marketing and sales messages to relate to the seasonal interests of your prospects. A presentation modified to make it refreshingly summerish will represent a new idea to your prospects and impress them with an image that seems energetic, imaginative, and forward-moving.

Use this tool: 10-Things-for-Your-Best-Summer-Ever

Thom Torode is a NJ based Executive & Business Coach.

He has owned over 5 different businesses and is currently the Managing Director for Sunrise Business Advisors. Thom’s expertise includes working with those business owners who have getting them unstuck and back in growth mode. Additionally Thom works with both franchisees and franchisors in helping them develop their leadership. Thom is also Director Consultant with BNI. When not helping business owners and their teams create the business and lives they want and need, he can be found following his kids activities.

Successful Franchise Leadership

What does it take to be successful in franchise leadership?

Despite your best efforts, your franchise may be struggling unsuccessfully to keep pace with others in the corporation. Insufficient sales performance, employee attrition, and organizational deficiencies can, of course, seriously impact growth and drive your operation to the bottom of the franchisees’ metrics chart.

Word cloud illustration franchise related

Franchise Coaching for Successful Franchise Leadership

Your corporation’s franchise development experts most likely approved your site selection due to comprehensive demographic data that indicates yours is a sound business environment. Therefore, you should probably start by assessing your franchise management method. Seek guidance from an outside management specialist, if necessary, to identify needed improvements and to most quickly develop your leadership skills to the level of your company’s most successful franchisees.

Quality

Presumably, your site receives products through a standard supply chain and/or other suppliers approved by the corporation. So, your product quality is likely consistent with that of the company’s other franchise units. If so, your consultant’s emphasis will probably center on potential issues in sales and customer service quality. An experienced consultant will evaluate your sales and service processes including lead nurturing systems, repairs and replacements, and customer satisfaction surveys, and will monitor your sales and service employees as they work with your customers to pinpoint issues impacting customer relationships.

Training

During the franchise discovery process, opportunities were probably arranged for you to interview some of the company’s experienced franchisees. If not, you should urgently call for these meetings and take full advantage of learning what others are doing well, especially in areas of operations in which you’ve identified weaknesses at your site. Of course, in extreme cases of low performance, advice from fellow franchisees or in-house franchisee training staff may only produce limited results. You and your team may need much more advanced support to achieve the strength of skills necessary to duplicate the success of your company’s best performing franchises.

Support

Your corporation’s franchise development staff probably spent abundant time with you and your new staff during the start-up phase providing franchise leadership training for you, your management staff, and your sales and service teams. A franchise management consultant will evaluate current performance by each team at your site and work with you to raise the value of these functions to your business.

Leadership

In a previous article I described what being a visionary leader is.

Demonstrate your purpose to build successful professional relationships with all who rely on the success of your business—customers, staff, your community, and your larger franchise organization. Your corporation has likely optimized your all-important web interface. So, focus on increasing external promotional efforts, and improve

Franchise Leadership

Franchise Leadership

systems for marketing to current customers. Make a positive working environment and commitment to excellence the priorities. After all, management’s attitudes tend to translate into customer service employees’ attitudes. Strive to inspire customers’ confidence and generate employees’ excitement about the business as your preferred method for building your brand! If you have determined that it’s time to turn to a business management expert specializing in working with franchises to coach you through to stable success, contact Sunrise Business Advisors for a complimentary Business Assessment Review (B-A-R).

Thom Torode is a NJ based Business & Franchise Coach.

He has owned over 5 different businesses and is currently the Managing Director for Sunrise Business Advisors. Thom’s expertise includes working with those business owners who have getting them unstuck and back in growth mode. Additionally Thom works with both franchisees and franchisors in helping them develop their leadership. Thom is also Director Consultant with BNI. When not helping business owners and their teams create the business and lives they want and need, he can be found following his kids activities.

The Key to Being a Great Visionary Leader

There are a variety of leadership skills out there, but visionary leaders are individuals who often receive the most success out of the endeavors.

Leadership Compass

Visionary Leader

These individuals can create and maintain a vision of a business and or organization that has not yet been created. This vision provides the owner with the will to work hard to achieve their goals, the passion to bring their vision to life, the creativity to adapt as times and technology advance, and the communication skills necessary to inspire their team and workforce to greatness.

Many people attempt to separate the creative process from the intellectual, but to be a truly great visionary leader, one must be able to think with both hemispheres of the brain. In order to effectively bring your creative ideas to life, one has to have the skills to apply this creative process to their whole organization. This individual will need the skills to bridge the creative with the intellectual while clearly articulating the value in their vision and empowering others to bring this idea to life. Having one or more of these skills allows the visionary leader to go after their creative endeavors in the most cost-efficient way.

While many tasks of the business process can be automated or delegated to other individuals, creativity cannot. These individuals are generally very charismatic and magnetic, providing them with the ability to manifest a vision, and delegate pieces of that vision to others. The goal of the visionary leader is to achieve company-wide adoption by planting the seed of an idea in the hearts and minds of others and watching the seed grow . This allows the visionary leader to hold on to the true picture without getting bogged down and losing their creative process. To do so, the visionary leader may set up an organizational structure or improve company hierarchy to ensure their vision is attainable.

Visionary leaders have a great talent for bringing out the best of people, and handling even the most challenging situations with grace and ease. This talent encourages all team members to rise up with a desire to pursue this vision and see it to fruition.

So how does one become a visionary leader? First you must begin to think like a leader. Practice visualizing and achieving goals in all areas of your life. Practice getting others excited about your vision and making them feel as though they are a part of something bigger and better.

It is also important to practice key leadership traits. Good leaders are:

Optimistic: Try to always look on the bright side of things, people should think of you as “that person who is never upset.”

Acceptance of Personal Responsibility: A good leader will not lay blame on others, complain or say “that isn’t my job” a great leader takes responsibility and performs a task to the best of their abilities.

Integrity: Having a strong since of integrity will earn the respect and admiration of others. Always tell the truth, and ensure you stick to a good sense of ethics and morals in all business dealings.

Communication Skills: Learn to enthusiastically communicate your thoughts and ideas. This shows confidence, and energy is infectious – which helps get others on board.

In the end, it does take a certain skill-set to be a visionary leader, but one does not have to be born with these skills. Keeping an open mind, and open heart and practicing good leadership skills in your daily life will naturally pave the way to becoming a visionary leader.

Sunrise Business Advisors is currently offering a limited number of Leadership Assessment Reviews, call 862-219-6890 now to schedule your review.

Thom Torode is an Executive & Business Coach based in New Jersey. He has owned multiple different types of businesses and is currently the Managing Director for Sunrise Business Advisors.  Additionally, Thom is a Director Consultant in the middle NJ region of BNI. When not helping business owners and their teams create the business and lives they want and need, he can be found following his kids activities.

Inspiring Greatness…Developing Success