How to avoid becoming irrelevant

March 3, 2013 Stephany Toman permalink

irrelevantA guest article by Neil Ducoff

In business, becoming irrelevant means that your company is indistinguishable from the bulk of your competition. It means that your service or product is easily replaceable. It means that you are competing on price rather than value, expertise, innovation or exclusivity. I don’t know about you, but anything remotely connecting my company, my work or life to the term “irrelevant” sends shivers up and down my spine. I’d rather throw in the towel than go to work every day knowing that what I do doesn’t make a difference.

All leaders must fear irrelevance. It’s the difference between leading a company to achieve the extraordinary or leading it to mediocrity. As a leader, your job is to achieve the extraordinary. Yet, if you wander around your company, you’ll see signs of thinking and behavior that feeds mediocrity. It could be something as simple as an employee who comes to work with an “I don’t care” attitude. I don’t about you, but I don’t care to sign paychecks for employees that don’t care.

Here are some no-compromise strategies to avoid becoming irrelevant:

  • Kick your own butt: That’s right – you need to kick your own butt. Leading people and growing a company is relentlessly hard work. If you keep talking about getting to that “next level” but never gain any ground, than you’re not leading with the intensity that next level requires. Got that? As a cyclist, if I want to improve my average speed (my next level), I need to peddle with greater intensity and power. That’s why I signed up for week-long professional Spring Training Camp next March in the mountains of North Carolina. My butt is going to get kicked for sure.
  • Today matters: Another day of average is another day of compromise. A company becomes irrelevant one day at a time – one missed opportunity at a time. Today is Monday. What are you going to do today that will lead to extraordinary? And what about the rest of the week? Oh, and then a fresh new year called 2013 has already begun. If 2012 had smatterings of irrelevancy, what are you going to do today to prevent that from spilling over into 2013? Today matters more than ever. Tick tock, tick tock…make it count.
  • Fear feeds irrelevant thinking and behavior: Fear that change will rock the boat too much that key employees may leave. Key employees are those that believe in vision of the company, and you as a leader, will support change initiatives. An employee that generates high sales, or has certain expertise, that resists change and is ego-driven – not team-driven – IS NOT a key employee. I’m not suggesting that you fire seemingly key employees, I’m suggesting that you do what’s best for the company without fear getting in your way.
  • Accountability rocks: Successful change initiatives are built on a foundation of accountability to achieving the desired outcome. Accountability begins with you, the leader. Too many leaders think the key to accountability is having the right consequences. Put your energy and focus into clarifying expectations, building the right systems, training how to use those systems and coaching them to succeed. Achieving extraordinary is the result of people working hard for things they want to achieve – not from doing good enough to avoid the consequences.
  • Ban mediocrity: Indifference feeds mediocrity. Indifference is that toxic “I don’t care” thinking and behavior that exists to some degree in all companies. If you want to ban mediocrity, you need to give your team something to strive and fight for – something that grabs their imagination and awakens their spirit. Chances are some people just got bored with the same old routine. Others stopped believing because you may have stopped believing. Perhaps it’s time to put action and energy behind what you believe your company is capable of achieving.
  • Take some risks: Not every idea is going to be a winner, but the more ideas you throw against the wall, the better your chances of finding some winners. Seth Godin says, “Ship something out the door every day.” He also says, “What’s the worst that could happen?” Success is a numbers game. It rises from repeated failures until the right outcome occurs. Celebrate it. Bask in the warm glow of success while it lasts. Keep taking risks to find that next winner. It’s what leaders do.

— NEIL DUCOFF, Founder & CEO, STRATEGIES

Check out Neil’s book: Fast Forward – Second Edition

The Definitive Guide to Salon, Spa and Medspa Management

SECOND EDITION – COMPLETELY RE-WRITTEN FOR 2013!

Joy of Spa News: Much Ado About Weddings

February 28, 2013 Janell Loving permalink

Joy of Spa News: Much Ado About Weddings, is now ready for you to customize. It is complete as is, but you are always welcome to make it yours by playing with the introduction, which follows:

As the season of the nuptial approaches, we think that taking a step back, breathing deeply, and considering that you may have many more options than you thought when it comes to preparing for your big day is just what you need to do! We also encourage each of you to relax and fully participate in what will surely be one of life’s most remarkable events! Team Joy

Our Bridal/Wedding edition of Joy of Spa News touches on various aspects of preparing for nuptials. We’ve brought in ideas from from around the world as well as the tried and true to spark the imagination and creativity of anyone involved with weddings this year. This edition will launch over a three day period, March 10th-12th, unless you’ve opted to change the date it goes out. Be sure to make any changes prior to that date! (And be sure to send yourself a test email after making any edits, and remember that Events that encompass the date on which your email is sent will be included in the email as well.)

Note: The new articles that accompany this edition of the Joy of Spa News will appear magically before it goes out to your clients, even if you can’t see them in their entirety when you send yourself a test email. No worries, they’ll be in place! We promise! If the newsletter looks really weird, let us know and we’ll fix you right up.

We highly recommend creating Bridal and wedding promotions and service packages designed with everyone in the wedding party – and beyond – in mind, to accompany this edition of Joy of Spa News. Couples massages, great skin and hair treatments – they all fit, and can offer up a great solution during the upcoming season of weddings. Remember, the Joy of Spa News is branded with your spa’s logo and when your client clicks to read more, the website is branded with your logo, too! Not yet signed up to send a beautiful, branded newsletter to your clients on a regular basis? Now is your time to get on-board! Go to Setup, Basics to put Joy of Spa to work for your spa. (As always, give us a call if you need help turning on the Joy!)

How One Spa Found $100,000!

Janell Loving permalink

avabellaA few months ago we talked about the changes in the economy, right here. Since our holiday revenue review, we have continued to see growth and increases in revenue across the board with our spas. This is definitely something that every spa owner wants to hear so with that in mind, we talked to one of our many spa owners that have seen gift certificate sales increase exponentially in the last few months.

Ava Bella Day Spa in Little Rock, Arkansas uses SpaBoom’s Instant Gift Certificates to offer online gift solutions to their customers. This year, Ava Bella Day Spa sold more than $29,000 worth of online Instant Gift Certificates in February leading up to Valentine’s Day, with almost $10,000 worth of online Instant Gift Certificates sold on Valentine’s Day! DeeDee Helbig, the owner of Ava Bella Day Spa, is extremely pleased with her gift certificate sales.

Since we started using SpaBoom our gift certificate sales have greatly increased! I have sold $31,000 more than last year at this time! I tell every business owner I know about SpaBoom.

Ava Bella Day Spa started using SpaBoom in April of 2012. Since then, they have sold over $100,000 in online Instant Gift Certificates. DeeDee attributes the increase in sales to the unique opportunity of convenience and enhanced abilities her clients now have to access gifts and information whenever they want or need it.