Pitfalls in assessing your business It can be very illuminating to conduct an assessment of a business. Some of the problems associated in doing one of these for one’s own business is the subliminal pressure to give the ‘right’ answers. We all want to look good, especially when we suspect that someone else is going to see those answers. That is pitfall number one, wanting to look good.
Another pitfall is in under estimating the depth of any not so good news and over estimating the height of the better news. Entitlement to maintain the status quo is a normal human tendency. The amount of work it could take to fix something is often mostly understood internally and it scares us. If admitted out loud something else might then also happen, something, we make up, that will also be bad. That is the fear and it is normal. Welcome to pitfall number two.
Let us get past those two. The next thing that is oh so common is that the fix, or at least the amount of fix, needed, is not implemented. Half hearted, lip service, euphemisms, even loud proclamations and organizing of ‘the fix project team’ are not too hard to come by. Actually expunging the complete root of the problem, and replacing what was not working well enough with a true and lasting fix just does not seem to happen very often. Back to the status quo and keeping things the same or not knowing what to do but wanting to look good (#1 again) or wallpapering the hole in the wall (#2 again) seem to collude against enduring positive change. Pitfall number three is not fixing what needs fixing.
Conducting a business assessment can be great first step in improving your business. When we outsmart the pitfalls of implementing a fix, things get better. One needs to be willing to:
Look to answer the assessment questions in truth,
See to accurately and honestly weight the answers in order to really know what the assessment is showing,
Act to proceed with integrity, doing the right things, all of it.
Without these three legs of the stool the business could falter or even fall. Regular assessment (measuring the results of what we are doing) is good business technique. Falling into those pits is the pitts, evaporating the value of the assessment.
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Written by: Joseph Seiler, MCC Executive Coach