Without Practice, You Can’t Be Perfect

You have carefully designed the client experience. You have written thorough procedures. Your staff is on board. So, how can you be sure you are doing the best job for the clients and delivering on your promises? One critical element is often overlooked: practice.

This post was inspired by an article from Chris Lema (thanks for alerting me Josh Patrick). In it, he reveals the error in trying to Book Yourself Solid. If you and your team are busy working all the time, you are almost certainly doing it wrong. You need time to step through your processes, make sure they work, and make sure that everyone on the team understands their role and has developed skill at carrying it out. Navy SEALs do it. Racing pit crews do it. And so should you.

My wife is a professional musician. She has been playing double bass for close to 30 years and performs with one of the best orchestras in the country. And still, several times a week, what I hear from down the hall is scales. Etudes. The basics. Because, she explains, stop doing that for even a few days at a time and you will not be in peak condition.

Providing clients a consistent excellent experience will drive client loyalty. Take a little time with the team and have each member demonstrate how they carry out their role in the process. Confirm that everyone’s skills are current. Solicit ideas for improvements.

When was the last time you sat down with your team to discuss how a plan gets put together? How often do you run through the process of getting ready for a client appointment? Or how you get the client ready for that appointment? (Do you send a reminder card or making a reminder phone call? Do you send preparatory materials in advance?) Consider getting the team together and stepping through your client onboarding process.

Make sure there is a little time each month for you and your staff to work on those skills. To review the basics. Confirm that what you are doing is what your manual says gets done.

After all, there is a reason for calling what you do a practice.

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