Recently I drove past what used to be a fast food restaurant in my neighbourhood. I remember when they opened doors about five years ago; I remember the environment was so great half the neighbourhood found an excuse to go in there every day.
I remember the array of foods they had, I remember the smiling staff and the way they made you feel at home. It was not possible for you to walk in and not buy something! One of the characteristics above ensured you did. It was crazy because they would still have people queuing and waiting to buy something even when they were clearly closed. Business was good!
So how come all I am doing is reminiscing instead of just pulling over to walk in for another chance of this great experience? Hmmm, I have to be satisfied with the nostalgia, because this business closed down about three years after they opened. And no; it isn’t that the owner died or something tragic like that. They closed their doors because somehow, they clearly designed and built a great business, but forgot that it wasn’t meant to end there.
By the end of the second year, this business had clearly started to die; the staff no longer smiled, the music was a whole lot melancholic if it was playing at all, their tables were not as clean as they used to be and sometimes the food they served their customers was either cold or stale… customer service went to the dust and we no longer looked forward to the experience of going there! Because you see as customers we could only be as loyal as the experience we received from the service provider.
They had a great model, but they didn’t have the capacity to maintain and sustain what they had built. The fact is this isn’t the first time, that I have experienced something like it. I have experienced it with the hair salon, the dress maker amongst others; I can attest that I have experienced this even with a bank.
In other cases, it is not that they lacked the maintenance culture to sustain what they had designed and built, it is just that the model they built was no longer relevant with the trend; in which case there was a need to revaluate and find a way to alter the design so they can continue to serve their customers and keep them loyal and they didn’t.
This post is not only born out of my desire for great service from a fast food restaurant, it is actually born from my desire to be able to revaluate my model; redesign in places I can tell the design needs tweaking and build to suit the trend, while committing to high maintenance standards so we can remain relevant.
Every dream life has three stages; Design, Build and Maintain… and after years of pushing the model there is a need to come back to the evaluation table and ascertain if your design model still works and if not, be open to find out what needs tweaking and be willing to go back to rebuilding those parts of the structure that are now faulty. And of course remember that the longevity of your dream is highly dependent on your ability to maintain those things that make you great and never tire of maintaining them.
Dropping the ball can happen in too many ways and those who want a great dream life cannot afford to drop the ball in anyway and when we do, we have a responsibility to pick it up and keep juggling.
For where I am at right now, I can tell you that growth is not fun at all; I can tell you that growth is intentional and I can tell you that growth is expensive but I can also tell you that depending on the level of impact you hope to make growth is absolutely a necessity.
To grow therefore, there is that need; if you are just starting out to ensure that you design your dream life, are willing to build with the right materials and commit to a maintenance structure that makes what you do a delight both to you and those you service. If on the other hand you have designed and built remember that maintenance is important and be open to redesigning if necessary.
No matter where you are in all these though; one thing is sure; you will make it NeverTheLess. As a matter of fact, I will make it, and so will you NeverTheLess.
Here is to our success!

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