COACH YOU BLOG
DO Sweat the Small Stuff for ultimate success
It’s a great book and no denying and I perfectly agree with the sentiment of not worrying about the little things or things outside our realm of influence. However, there is significant evidence to suggest that small stuff amounts to big stuff over time. If we want success, then consistent action appears to rule the day.
Rowing analogy, bear with … I stood in for Stroke this week – that’s the person opposite the cox in the back of the boat who the rest all follow. The crew have to follow everything she does, not just the blades coming in and out of the water but the height of the blades on the recovery, the speed up the slide, the timing of the hands away, the timing of the body rock over and truly great crews breathe together too. The stroke has to have great rhythm and consistency. The crew must be able to trust the pace and her next move to be able to comfortably follow, to feel safe and enjoy a good outing. I was stroke for about three years so know how it’s done. Every change in pace and pressure comes from stroke and she feels how the boat is doing and when to reset the rhythm to bring everyone back in line. It’s about making every action perfect and perfectly synchronised.
Disaster … The intensity of focus and concentration is overwhelming. My concentration would drift then suddenly I remembered I was supposed to be stroking the boat. So, to keep concentration I would decide to focus on lengthening my stroke or putting more power into the finish. The rhythm would change and the crew lost the plot until we got back into rhythm and then I’d do it again – disaster! It was keeping me amused and interested but doesn’t make it a comfortable row for everyone else!
Successful leadership is very similar: doing the little things well. It’s about fulfilling the expectations of those around you – about consistency. Doing what you say you will, when you say you will. We have all had the bosses who are constantly bringing in “improvements” to the processes. No sooner have we got used to one set of instructions or ways of working when another comes in. If it takes 5,000 hours to become an expert in something then it surely follows that if things constantly change, expertise takes longer and longer. Make sure that your big ideas are talked through with the team, broken down into manageable, consistently applied actions within a timely fashion. to secure the outcome you want. Communicate consistently, praise consistently and reward results on targets met.
And at home too. The consistent little things make people feel secure, cared for and loved. So, that cup of tea every morning, the hug as you leave, sharing your day over emptying the dishwasher. It’s making your bed in the morning so that your night time routine is relaxed and calming. Training people to put their shoes away consistently to prevent accidents and arguments! Consistent communication is, once again, the most important element so that everyone knows what is expected and everyone’s needs are met. Your people are not mind-readers. Don’t harbour resentment about not getting your needs met! If you want or feel you need something, then let them know! All my children left home this year and I miss the hugs. We all need eight hugs a day so tell all the appropriate people and make sure you get your dopamine hit … CONSISTENTLY!
What consistent action do you take that works for your business? Mine is having a fabulous VA who reminds me to do all the important regular stuff when I’m busy getting distracted!