September is like the start of a new year for my wife and kids. Everyone heads back to school today. My wife is eagerly looking forward to teaching her 30+ kids.
This year is different, though. As my kids get older, I find them both super excited to get started and ready to conquer another year.
Yesterday morning we spent a long time getting everything ready. We sharpened their pencils; we got their backpacks and lunch bags ready; we talked about the upcoming year and what would constitute success.
I shared with them one of my fundamental principles which I firmly believe applies to Grade One-to-Four Students and those operating multi-million dollar organizations.
It's the principle of consistency.
It's the same principle you see in action every week as this Tidbit lands in your inbox every single week.
I tried to explain to them this morning, even as they continue to show adorable new levels of sass and the occasional rolling of the eyes.
Show up and do your best work. Come home, and do it again the next day.
It's not always going to be easy. Sometimes it's going to be tough. There will be days you don't want to go. There might even be some kids that aren't friendly or kind.
But if you consistently do the right things, you'll come out ahead…
Almost every company and every person faces that enormous gulf between what we know we should do and what we actually do.
In many cases, the simpler the thing we should be doing, the more we resist it.
Perhaps this is why doctors continue to fight using checklists and washing their hands regularly (even though both of those things have been shown to reduce hospital complications and deaths by more than 30%).
We fight the simple.
We fight consistency.
And in almost every business, the most significant successes come from being consistent and from operating as simply as possible.
Consistency doesn't just happen.
It requires constant effort.
It requires diligence.
It requires hard work from the C-suite on down.
It's not easy, but it's the closest thing there is to a silver bullet. 90% or more of my projects over the past five years have been built on making it easier for leaders to be consistent, and to get consistency from their teams.
I can confidently predict that there are areas of your business that are less consistent than you know they should be, and further, I can predict that if we were to address those and put systems and tools into place that improved consistency, you would see massive success as a result.
So, could today be the start of your new year too?