Think Long-Term No Matter How Busy You Are in the Short Term

With flowers in bloom and grass growing fast, many of us are running around at breakneck speed right now trying to get done all that we need to do. We’re going nonstop from early in the morning until late in the evening, with barely time to eat. The pace is unrelenting but, we tell ourselves, we just have to get through these super-busy months and then we’ll get back to all the “priorities” we’ve let slide—from thinking about our long-term business strategy and spending quality time with our families, to eating right and staying fit.

I am very familiar with this approach because it used to be mine, and in times of stress I can still easily fall back into it. But I try mightily not to, and if you want to win at business and at life you should try mightily too. Your future, your family, and your health are priorities only if you make them so.

Your long-term business strategy. Do you know where you want your company to be in five years? Ten years? Twenty? Do you have a plan for getting there? Or are you just toiling through the daily grind and expecting you’ll get somewhere good through grit? If you’re guilty of the latter, you’re going to have a hard time succeeding and an easy time getting burnt out. As my friend and business advisor Mark Thompson puts it, “Energy and grit are not how you’ll grow your company. Processes and systems are.” Put the time in now to build processes and systems your staff can follow and repeat without you. Develop talented team members so they can take on more responsibility and lessen reliance on you.

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Your family and friends. I spent this past week in Florida with my family, just like I do nearly every year at this time. My wife is a teacher and we travel on her spring break. Is this the best time to be away in the landscaping industry? No, but it’s the best time for my family, and by building a dedicated team at Grunder Landscaping, along with good systems and processes, I can take a vacation in the spring with the full assurance my business can run for a week without me. If you’re shaking your head saying there’s no way you could get away for a week now, let me repeat: Put the time in now to build processes and systems your staff can follow and repeat without you. Develop talented team members so they can take on more responsibility and lessen reliance on you. Sure, it won’t happen overnight, but it won’t ever happen if you don’t start taking the steps now.

Your health. When we’re stressed, eating right and working out are often the first good habits we toss by the wayside and yet, ironically, if we keep at them they can do the most to help us manage our stress. Think about it: Have you ever eaten a healthy meal and then afterward thought Man, I should not have done that? Have you ever exercised and then afterward thought Wow, I really regret taking time for that? I can’t say that I always succeed in following my own advice here, but I do know how much better I feel—and how much better I’m able to deal with the challenges of work—when I do.

If the demands of spring are causing your priorities to slide, take a step back this week and reassess where it is you really want to go.

Have a great week!

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P.S. We’re holding a special one-day $uper Sales Bootcamp in Cincinnati on Friday, June 7. If you want to meet and exceed your targets this summer and fall, I’ll show you the tricks and tactics that work for us, year after year, at GLC.