What Will It Take for Your What's Next?
As individuals, when we think about the future, tunnel vision can set in as it relates to selfish interest. We consider the lifestyle we would like for ourselves and family, and depending on personal motivations, what impact we will leave on our community. As business owners, we then expand our thinking to what it will take for us to get to whatever the "Next" is for the business and its impact on the community. And as entrepreneurs, the "What's Next" acts as a creative driver into the future. For entrepreneurs, often right before a "What's Next" is achieved, innovative ideas begin to bubble to the surface, which means for many, the "What's Next" is a constant state of a creative development forcing change and growth.
In our last installment, "What's Your Next - Do You Have the Bench to Get there?" we explored the importance of developing next generation leadership. And how, by having the right team and depth of leadership bench strength will enable you to create your future. Ensuring you have the right bench means intentionally investing in attracting and retaining the right talent and investing resources (people, time, and money) in the right places unique to your business.
Proper alignment of resources in relation to the organization's unique circumstances helps drive value in your multi-unit franchisee organization in the present, but also sets you up in the future as you move to your "What's Next." The barrier to getting here is typically found in the argument of not being willing to invest. Investing time away from the day to day to carefully consider your organization's strategic goals and what it will take to get there which may include investing in facility upgrades, technology, people development, or engaging outside experienced advisors for perspective and guidance.
Just like anything we do in life, it can often take time and effort to see a return on investment. For example, consider the effort for personal wellness. For many, to stay fit, it requires a monthly monetary contribution to a local gym and sometimes a little bit more into specific training like yoga or cycling. Personal wellness also requires a daily investment of time to work out. Most people are not doing this because they have a chance at being in the Olympics, but they invest their time and money so that they can sustain their health and well-being. The hope, too, is that the return on the investment of the time and money will be that as they continue to age, they can better fight off ailments, stay strong and flexible, and hopefully age gracefully.
Just like the resources many people dedicate for personal wellness, the business also requires similar investments to remain competitive and achieve the organization's "Next." There are plenty of excuses that prevent people from investing in their personal wellness (getting up too early, not making any gains, or seeing immediate results.) Just like in business when we invest in planning or development, we may not see the impact until we are down the road and into the future.
It is sometimes hard to "see" the return on the investment when you are in the day to day grind, just like it is hard to see changes on the scale when you weigh yourself every day. However, when you take the opportunity to look up, reflect on the impacts of your planning, and remain committed to plan and implement strategies towards your "What's Next," your investments of time and money will be like an "I told you so" as you hit identified milestones. And those are the best kinds of "I told you so." What will you commit to investing in your business to help your "What's Next" trajectory?
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