Stay Focused

Keep focused, keep your eye on your goals at all times. Don’t get ahead of yourself. And don’t get big headed about yourself. When you arrive at your place of work, never forget that you haven’t accomplished anything yet. At this point, you’re no different than anyone else until you prove it. There’s only one mindset to bring as you go through that front door—the most valuable thing you have is your time. Never forget this. Make the most of every hour in your day. Make every moment count for something. If you have a good day, don’t fall into the trap of “rewarding” yourself the very next day by slacking off. Do it again! Whatever you did worked! You’re doing something right! Be thankful. Learn from that experience. There’ll be plenty of time for rewards later.

Only you know for sure when you’ve put in a solid day of work. If you shave an hour off here and there by taking an extra long lunch, phoning a friend instead of a customer, or by calling in “sick”, only you know for sure what’s really going on. Even though you’re cheating the company you work for, the one who’s really being cheated is YOU! You’ve stolen away precious time that could have been productive. Instead, you chose to “work the system” and do the bare minimum. Pretty soon you don’t know any other way to work. And who suffers? Besides the company, YOUR FAMILY! That’s right. Every day you slack off, you’re cheating your kids out of a better education that costs a little more, or a better home or vacation for your family. How proud of yourself are you now? If you’re around people like that in your place of work, avoid them like poison because they will change you forever for the worse.

I’m not telling you to avoid being friends with people at work. You don’t have to become a hermit to be successful. What I am telling you is to hang around with people who can help you. In my line of work, I never had lunch with other salespeople. Why? THEY COULDN’T HELP ME. I spent more time with people in the service department where I know my customers would spend the majority of their time once I sold them a car. I wanted those customers to be taken care of so I knew they were having a first-class ownership experience. If you’re in the business of insurance sales, you might want to spend some time getting to know underwriters or people in claims to better understand what they do that can help you. Maybe you’re in real estate sales. Spend some time getting to know who’s who in the title companies you deal with. They’re the key to processing your paperwork when you close a sale. These are the types of people you should be having lunch with, not the guy in the office next to yours who wants to talk about last night’s game.

You also should invest some of your hard-earned money to advance your career where it counts. In fact, every third Wednesday of the month, I took the entire service department out to dinner, on me (and Uncle Sam, tax deductable, of course). I wanted to service them for a job well done the same way I wanted them to service my customer’s. I wanted the service department to know that I trusted them with my customers. I respected their expertise. And most of all, I appreciated what they were doing for my customers and me. And they responded. There were many times that the service reps and techs would stay a little bit longer to take care of one of my customers. They were appreciative that I respected them and took good care of them. The driving force behind why I did this was pretty straight forward thinking. Picture a rotating Ferris wheel as it comes around again with those same customers back in the market for your product or service. How you treated them would determine if they’d come back to you to buy again. So whatever your goals or targets are in a workday, working smart and staying focused improves your odds of achieving success!