This is part 3 of our Something to Give series!
These blog articles are inspired by Brigham Dickson’s upcoming book, Something to Give.
Brigham is the founder of Power Selling Pros and a passionate business owner who teaches through story-telling with motivational lessons that apply to those of us working in the home service industry – and beyond.
As a leader, it’s crucial to free yourself from unnecessary burdens and focus on the areas that truly matter. How can you inspire others to follow your lead? What unique offerings do you bring to the table? What systems do you need to put in place to make sure work is getting done well?
In part 3 of this 4-part series, we’ll explore these questions and more, empowering you to become a leader with a purpose and a vision that drives success and growth. Inspired by Brigham Dickson’s upcoming book, “Something to Give,” these articles take you on a journey of self reflection within your leadership role. Whether you’re in the home service industry or beyond, we aim to equip you with valuable insights through Brigham’s heartfelt stories and lessons.
Our first blog post laid the groundwork by analyzing our core principles in The Pattern for Excellence. The previous post is all about “The Foundation.” We use purpose, pattern, and principle to set things in motion. We’re going to take that momentum and apply it with today’s topic: The Work – performance, preparation, persistence, and patience. Let’s dive in and uncover what it means to truly have something to give.
The Work: Step 1
“Performance means becoming a representation of the Pattern for Excellence in everything you do so you can unite and connect with your team as well as build business environments in which everyone can continue to grow.”
– Brigham Dickinson, ‘Something to Give’
Performance as a leader is synonymous with becoming the living embodiment of the Pattern for Excellence in all aspects. What you do matters. And it matters to the people around you, too. This chapter in Something to Give helps portray these principles as an action.
Brigham often says that he is blessed to have many individuals in his life who inspire him. One such individual worked with us at Power Selling Pros as a stellar member of our team. Her name is Raquel. During a company retreat a few years ago, Brigham had several outdoor activities planned for our team to enjoy. Raquel, however, intended on excusing herself from these activities due to the fact that they were not wheelchair accessible. Raquel has been getting around in a wheelchair since she was young – though it has never affected her spirit.
Brigham knew he wasn’t willing to leave Raquel out of the fun. Care: empathy validates worth. After some persistent convincing, she allowed him to carry her. Ask: asking encourages action. They even had the lighthearted conversation that it would have been easier to leave her behind…easier, but not better.
Gratitude: gratitude reinforces unity.
A leader needs to generate emotional engagement from the performance of their own roles. Brigham says he was honored and happy to have Raquel included in our day. She was happy to be there too. This example will carry over into the performance reflected in our team.
Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) are measurements taken to track the success of an organization. Here are 5 steps that will elevate the performance of everyone in your organization and build value and loyalty through-out your customer base.
1.) Have an industry specific coaching company like Power Selling Pros holding your call center reps accountable. This will put your Comfort Advisors and technicians in the best position possible to do the work in a client’s home and set your business apart from the competition so your company is the only company a client will ever consider for their home service needs.
2.) Join your team out in the field every so often. This is more than a ride-along; you will actively support your team when you work in tandem and lead by example to create an excellent experience for the homeowner. (If you need some ideas on how to teach soft skills to your techs and CA’s just return to the PFE. You can learn more from my first book, The Pattern for Excellence.)
3.) Have your executive team members share with you who they feel are key players on the team; individuals they believe, having worked alongside them, show leadership qualities. This identifies those who are most capable in helping grow your company. As a result, you become open to delegation and gain more freedom over your time.
4.) Record your daily tasks and accomplishments. This is a physical visual aid of what you do and allows organization of your time. Is there something that keeps appearing on your task list that you don’t want to be doing? Is there something more pressing that needs your attention? Slowly offload those “extras” onto your talented team to make more space for your time.
5.) Steps 1 through 4 guide you to gain freedom over your income and time. Now it’s time to work on your business. Major indicators such as financing, service agreements, and online reviews are worth consideration as you begin to delve deeper. Business owners tend to get what they focus on; where attention goes, results will follow.
How do you measure the performance of your team? What about your performance as a leader?
The Work: Step 2
“Never stop working to hone, maintain, and expand how you give with continued preparation long before you’re hit with the tests life throws at you.” – Brigham Dickinson, ‘Something to Give’
Everyone remembers the confusion and desperation of COVID-19 in 2020. While we processed it in different ways, we shared the universal experience of uncertainty. Like many others, our business was suffering. We knew we had to do something drastic. When our clients called in to cancel services, we offered to continue working with them for free. We created easy-to-access online material. We held on to hope. We learned to find the hidden opportunities in the face of crises.
Leaders who are worth following are always preparing and leveling up their “game” to increase their performance to strengthen the spirits, bodies, and minds of those they’re accountable for. The essentials of preparation starts with typical day-to-day work; training, operating procedures, answering questions, providing feedback, and so on. But that is just scratching the surface. Daily improvement must be allotted its importance in your everyday life. Being prepared means facing honesty, paying attention, building good habits, and thinking ahead. In Brigham’s new book, he will teach you how to be prepared for the expected and the unexpected. A quote from H. Jackson Brown, Jr. in The Complete Life’s Little Instruction Book® states: “The best preparation for tomorrow is doing your best today.”
Be prepared to serve everyone in whatever way that you can. From the Pattern For Excellence, we know that preparation inspires confidence. How will your preparation to serve your team (and your clients) give them confidence in their actions?
The Work: Step 3
“You know what you’re doing is right—and who it’s for. Maintain your focus on what’s most important, and unwaveringly push through the inevitable obstacles and difficulties that will come your way.” – Brigham Dickinson, ‘Something to Give’
Brigham was 19 years old when he had an opportunity to partake in a mission trip in Brazil. To prepare for the trip, he started to learn Portuguese to communicate with locals. Upon arriving in Brazil, Brigham suddenly felt like he had learned the wrong language altogether. He understood nothing. As a people-person eager to communicate, he was plunged into a state of panic.
For the duration of the mission trip, members were given a challenge to memorize several [long] lessons in Portuguese. No easy task, but the challenge ended up becoming light at the end of the tunnel for Brigham: it gave him purpose. And with purpose came persistence. He wanted to succeed. Perseverance leaves no room for self pity or self doubt to get in the way. By the end of the challenge, Brigham was one of only three individuals to complete it. The next challenge was to then use these lessons in this language to connect with people – you can read about it in Something to Give to witness the breakthrough moment.
By leading with optimism, you are setting the stage for principles like gratitude, positivity, and empathy. This drives persistence. Something we commonly see in employees is the feeling of being “overworked and underpaid.” When you persist, you commit to a goal. Your goal will be achieved through dedication to the people around you. If the individuals in your office feel like they matter, they too will be persistent in achieving more with you at their side.
Is there a difference between being taught to focus versus being told to focus? How can you apply the PFE to support awareness towards your aspirations?
The Work: Step 4
“Showing meekness and understanding the power of delayed gratification isn’t weakness. It allows you to move forward with self-control.” – Brigham Dickinson, ‘Something to Give’
Great things rarely happen overnight. We as people are often impatient; so much so that we lose the momentum to carry us to the end of a project. In fact, sometimes it doesn’t even make it to the “project” stage and remains an idea, before dwindling out. We give up before we get there.
The “Marshmallow Experiment” was a famous study conducted in the 1970s. Marshmallows were given to children aged 3-5. They were told they could eat their treat immediately, or they could wait for 15 minutes, and would be given two marshmallows. A reward for their patience. While the experience was not perfect, it taught us that the children who waited the full 15 minutes typically performed better in their work and generally lived healthier lives.
Here’s some irony for you: it takes time to learn patience.In Brigham’s book, we explore the reality that it will take longer to earn your second marshmallow. However, if you have the patience to do the work the Pattern for Excellence requires—and the patience with your people as they learn it, too—you’ll receive bags of metaphorical marshmallows from the people you lead, now and in the future.
Regardless of whether you’re a child or an adult, patience in your leadership will bring you more fulfilling and more lasting results. To reach a point of sustained momentum won’t be easy. Hard work will require compromise and sacrifice. You have the capacity to weigh the pros and cons in your mind; if the sacrifice is worth it, you will choose to pay the price – especially if you want something badly enough. Be patient with the process and patient in your development to receive a greater reward.
Has “losing your patience” ever worked in your favor? What alternative response would have brought greater peace of mind or growth?
Having a well-defined purpose, cultivating healthy patterns of thinking, and adhering to reliable work principles are the foundational elements that set the stage for momentum in a business. A clear sense of purpose guides every decision and action, providing a unifying direction for the team. Healthy patterns fuel positivity and resilience, empowering leaders to overcome challenges and inspire their teams to excel. Meanwhile, reliable principles from the Pattern for Excellence ensure consistency, efficiency, and…well, excellence!
Together, these pillars create a strong framework that propels the business forward. Embracing these elements not only enhances business performance but also elevates the collective spirit of the organization, leading to lasting success in an ever-changing landscape.
To read more about how to lay the groundwork for your company, you can order Brigham’s book on his website, or set up an appointment to learn more about coaching your team to excellence. You can also get more of part 3 of this series for the next topic: The Work.