As you have probably read, I have been in the pet industry long enough to have heard some great successes and some great failures, both actually experienced by even myself along the way!
One thing I can say FOR SURE, is I have walked in your shoes (usually wet shoes because of a particularly rambunctious dog in the tub or messy shoes because of a hidden gem in the play yard left by one of our day care campers) enough to know what struggles you have in the daily operations of your pet business! I know what you face every day when you open your doors, when you close your doors, and everything in between. I probably even know what keeps you up at night.
This being said, for the first 25 years in this business, I wish I would have had a resource I could tap into to help me avoid some of these pitfalls and help me make the most of my day, my staff, and my business; a resource that understands what I put up with every day, what dreams I have, what types of customers I have, the challenges I face with staffing, etc. It’s time for you to take a breath. It’s time for you to start enjoying your work again. It’s time for you to feel accomplished instead of frustrated and tired. It’s time to have a new outlook.
I want to provide this for you! And the best part…I give you this help for FREE! Yep, I have FREE information to share with you that will help you. But there’s a catch. Well, not really. All you have to do is ASK! How do you ask, you ask? Funny play on words there huh? 🙂
Receive your FREE information by simply emailing me and asking for it. Yep, that’s it. From there, I will be reaching out to you to let you in on my world of knowledge for you to take and make your own, starting the VERY NEXT DAY.
What are you waiting for? Click Here to Find out More!!
As I have mentioned a number of times, my history in the pet industry goes back to when I was 13 years old, learning to bath and groom dogs in a small grooming shop in the St. Louis area. If you would have asked me nearly 27 years ago if I would be writing about nearly 30 decades of experiences in this great business, I would have thought you were crazy. After all, I actually had aspirations of being a detective or wall street “suit”. Obviously neither have come to fruition, but that’s okay, especially considering the recent conditions in both of those previously attractive fields.
So, I am staring a new chapter in my blog writing. The next number of posts will be a collection of short stories about some of the fun times and even some really low times I have experienced first hand in this business. Of course, no names being mentioned, I can tell you that without some really cool bosses, co-workers, and eventually subordinate staff supporting me, many of these experiences couldn’t have happened the way they did. Every situation, every up and down, I view like bricks. Bricks build solid walls and eventually solid structures. Thanks to these “bricks” of history, I have the ability to excel in this business and share my life in the pet industry with you….through my eyes.
Well, with the turn of calendar, many of us contemplate the notion of setting resolutions, some even think the whole process through and launch ourselves into this new endeavor believing we will be successful. While some of us are, most are not. Most fail due to the lack of planning, or setting smaller, more milestone based goals for ourselves. Maybe you have heard the adage, “you cannot eat an elephant all in one bite”. Simply put, this means you have to define the steps to success needed to reach your overall goal. It’s like trying to get the top of a staircase without using the steps (no cheating and using the elevator). Poor execution usually leads to disappointment and surrender.
I am a firm believer in a try, try again mentality. Keep all opportunities on the table. Seek out new opportunities. Just because you are on this constant search for new things, doesn’t mean you are going to pursue them. Sometimes discovering and learning of new opportunities helps us more than we think. While sometimes we may think we will find something so attractive during our search process, we often times simply confirm the appeal of our current situation. This just means we have made good decisions up to this point. But just waiting for things to fall into your lap is not my recommendation. In my opinion, to be satisfied or “settled” is to give up control. Nobody is more in control of what eventually happens to us than we are. If we cannot control what is dealt to us, at least we can control how we deal with it. Without exploration for opportunities when you don’t necessarily need them, you will left short when you do.
Pick your passion, pursue it with all your heart, and never settle. Vince Lombardi once said, “”Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we will catch excellence”.
My deepest sympathy and prayers go out to the families of everyone involved in the tragedy in Connecticut last week.
All of us have a duty to protect what is most important to us and this includes our families, our homes, AND our businesses and the staff who work for us. This being said, I urge you to take a moment and review your safety protocols (if you don’t have any, maybe you should) to make sure you are addressing such things as un-welcomed intruders, violence between staff members, weather disasters, and even death.
I have experienced all of these in the various different roles I have held in business. From fights (physical and mental abuse) between staff members or staff and their family members, to break ins, theft, tornadoes, fire, and even the unfortunate sadness of a staff member passing away due to unforeseen heart condition in her thirties.
It is a difficult task, writing a safety protocol, but one that MUST be done. I suggest you take this necessary time to not only prepare one for your business, but also for your home. But, writing a plan is not good enough. Practice, practice, practice.
I have the pleasure of saying I have worked with some real heroes and believe me when I say, these heroes walk among us everyday.
I’m going to be 40 years old in February 2013. I used to think of this age as “old”, but here I am….about to be “old”, at least in the minds of my teenage boys. If you want a quick, hard, cold dose of reality check and inadequacies of your age, put it to the “Technology and the Teenager” test I have developed. It’s real easy to do. Simply buy a new piece of today’s latest technology and time yourself in any of the capacities of the new tech and then time any teenager performing the same task. I’ll be you a dollar to donuts, the teen wins! (unless you are a teenager yourself)
So why fight it?! I have concluded, over the course of the past few years and a handful of new devices, that I actually revel in the fact that I can foot the bill for the new tech, hand it off to my teen “techie” and let them set it all up for me. My teens love the fact that I have to ask them how to do something with the technology and I love the fact that as they are “teaching” me, they are actually “working” for me to get my tasks completed and it seems we both win!
Funny story. When my youngest son, about to be a teen, was ten years old, he saw a picture of a typewriter in a collectibles magazine I had laying around. He looked perplexed. I noticed this and asked him what he was thinking. His question blew me away. “Dad, where is the screen for this computer?”
We have allot to learn from these “techies”. One thing is for sure. I will never underestimate their power, but I must continue to figure out how to harness it!
According to the American Pet Products Association 2011-1012 Survey, 78% of dog owners will buy gifts for their pets. 53% of these gifts are bought for Christmas!
Knowing that pets are now more like family members than ever before, if you are retailer, remember to carry products that enhance the relationship and bonding time we spend with our fuzzy family members. If you are a pet owner, look for these type of gifts so that you can continue to involve your pet in your everyday schedule.
I read this interesting article about coffee shops this morning (while at the coffee shop) and it confirmed everything I have always thought about the interesting work environment and the amount of work I get done while sipping a cup of coffee. Ok, I drink a whole cup, but who’s counting.
I still have the same routine I have had for nearly 20 years. I start most of my days at the coffee shop, spending some “Me Time” reading a business book, newspaper, organizing my calendar, and once a week meeting a buddy to talk about our businesses, family, and of course, football.
I have always been amazed by how focused I can be in such a noisy atmosphere. As you will read in the study, however, there is a difference in productivity and noise levels and the threshold from one to the next is very thin. That is, don’t plan on getting too much cognitive progress done surrounded by barking dogs, but people talking, ordering coffee, and the occasional Bible study table next to mine on Thursdays seem to be the perfect “blend” of productive ambiance.
I am saying all of this to suggest you take some “Me Time” and make a routine of starting your day under YOUR rules, planning your day or your week by stuffing your head with productive and meaningful intent. The coffee will open your eyes. The coffee shop locale will open your mind. All you have to do is fill it with something useful.