Like many, as I get older, I have to work harder to keep fit. I found myself 6 months into a 10 pound weight loss goal weighing 5 pounds more than when I started. I decided something needed to change. As went through the process of creating a new plan and setting goals for measurement I began to realize that losing weight was much like improving the performance in a C-Store company.
DECIDING TO MAKE AN ACTION PLAN I went online and found a few articles that told me that reducing my calories by 10% below my calorie burn would allow me to hit my goal in just a few months. I then found a calculator that allow me to determine my calorie burn. Finally, I started tracking everything that I ate and recording the estimate calories burned exorcising. I made a simple spread sheet that tracked the calories in and out and gave me my net every day. The important thing was making sure I was tracking things with accurate measurement. Writing down things that I wanted others to believe was not going to get me to my goal.
MEASURING DAILY I started watching the results each day and noticed that I stopped eating certain foods that had high calories and would occasionally add an extra mile or another set of reps with the weights. I started to get inspired and found that the decisions became a little bit easier and more clear as I had to record the results. I also got on the scale and saw the goal was being hit and was sometimes even a little ahead. With out measurement, there was no way to track my progress. When losing weight, a simple step on the scale will tell you if the plan is working. C-Stores either need tools or sophisticated manual processes to help them with their measurements, but without this critical part of the process they won’t know if they are succeeding or failing, or be aware when plans need to change. Constant and consistent measurement is important to overall success.
THE BUSINESS APPLICATION I work with C-Stores all the time. I talk to some of the best store managers and supervisors about their work. They tell me measuring works exactly the same way with increasing sales and reducing costs. When accurate data is easily available and management says this important (provides consequences and rewards), it motivates the right actions. I often hear things like ‘of course it makes a difference when we measure our results and pay attention to what we do. Any good manager can increase sales by keeping up with prices, offering specials, upselling and keeping the shelves well stocked and presented.’
JUST DO IT So it just comes down to priorities. We can do anything we set our minds to do (and put some measurements in place to make clear our results)