One of the questions I had in life revolved around how to be consistent.
Growing up with 9 brothers and sisters, my biggest pet peeve is somebody saying that they’re going to do something and then not doing it.
I had to learn not to trust what people said. I realized that people weren’t consistent in their words or in their actions. That was a hard lesson for me to learn as a kid and an even harder one to trust. Consistency is a skill.
Even the best business plan will fail without dedicated consistency.
If I say I’m going to do something, I do it. If I say I’m going to be somewhere, I’m going to be there. It’s all about initiative. If I’m going to initiate a process, I’m going to follow through.
Consistency is a must to build a multi-million dollar business. This is how to be consistent:
Measure Your Consistency
Until you try something for a period of time in a consistent manner, you can’t decide if it worked or not.
How you measure effectiveness is what you’re measuring. If it’s not being measured, it’s not getting done.
I typically give new processes six months before judging them as a success or failure. It’s like a combination lock, one tick it off, it’s not going to open.
It’s often a minor tweak that can create an overhaul in your business that will make a difference.
Consistency Creates Accountability
I ask my team members to be accountable for the deliverables and goals. They should expect the same from their leadership. I work to establish consistent and recurring meetings, with a project or aspect where the business requires attention.
We do a 90-day plan to review our goals and outcomes and hold people accountable to those. And if they don’t deliver the promise, we simply have a conversation.
The simple fact that it’s set in a time and I have to report their progress becomes a catalyst to move the initiative forward and create a successful end.
Consistency Establishes Your Reputation
Business growth requires a track record of success. You can’t establish a track record if you are always shifting gears or following the sparkle. Many efforts fail because they can’t get to the finish line. Not because the tactic was flawed or the goal was not clear. The problem was often the team simply did not stay the course to the objective.
Commitment is equal to Consistency.
Consistency Makes You Relevant
Your team and your customers need a predictable flow of information from you. All too often, I see businesses big and small adopt a campaign or initiative only to end it before it gains traction. How frustrating!
It’s effective to run a variety of advertising campaigns. Write numerous blog entries weekly newsletters or continual processes of changes throughout the year.
Can I count on you to get it done?
Can I count on your word to deliver it? Showing up sometimes and not other times is not an option.
Are you committed to what you commit to? That’s where our breakdowns occur. They come from not communicating the breakdown or the expectation that has not been delivered. We call that falling on the sword.
Consistency Maintains Your Message
Remember that saying some parents said, “Do what I say, not what I do.” Oh, I hate that saying.
As a leader, it’s being consistent with your leadership model regardless of whether you are dealing with independent contractors or virtual assistants; they mirror how you behave.
If you treat a meeting as unimportant, don’t be surprised if they treat it as unimportant. If you treat your teammates as unimportant, don’t be surprised they’re going to treat them as unimportant.
When something doesn’t work, I look back and look at what happened. I ask serious questions: “Did we shift gears too quickly? ‘Did part of the team not deliver on the commitment?” “Did I drop the ball?” “Did I over-commit?” “Did I look if our team had the capability and the capacity to complete it in enough time?” That eliminates chaos.
Or was the expected outcome off base from the start most your team won’t share that with you?
Most of the time the reason is the tracks lack consistency is that we didn’t look at all the parameters. We need to take inventory and how consistent are you as a leader. Make a plan for that commitment and be consistent with your word.
The degree of your aliveness is to the degree of your integrity. That means the degree of your truth is the degree of the outcome.
I know that’s like a punch but sometimes you need to hear that. Integrity is like dirty laundry. You can do your laundry all day long and by six o’clock you’re putting your socks in or underwear in the dirty laundry. There’s more dirty laundry, it doesn’t end.
The same thing with your consistency, holding your team accountable to what they say they will do. Hold yourself accountable for what you say you’re going to do. That’s powerful. It starts with noticing. The French have a saying, “The more things change, the more they stay the same.”
What it means is you can change projects, you can change direction but if you don’t change your behavior, if you don’t change your accountability then there’ll be another breakdown.
It always starts with me so I have to have three things that I’d look at with my team:
- Was I clear in my expectations?
- Did I hold them accountable for what I asked them to do?
- Did I give them training?
If I say “No” to any one of those, it’s not my team’s breakdown it’s mine. I have to be really clear on what I’m delivering, hold them accountable, and train them now. If I did all three of those things and we have a breakdown then I’m going to have a conversation with my team. I’m going to coach them along the way but I’m going to also own my part in it. Please also note that training isn’t one and done. You can’t just tell somebody here’s how you do it and miraculously expect a result. Think about it, some people still can’t cook and their mother showed them for years.
First, you should consider where you can improve your own consistency, then those around you. That’s how we develop consistency in five steps.
I’m your sister on the journey. I’m your profit coach and remember you’re in business for yourself not by yourself. I got you
“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too.”
-William Hutchison Murray