Managing Your Organization with a Positive Attitude

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Zig Ziglar said it best when he explained that if you want to become successful in life, you’ve got to avoid “stinkin’ thinkin’.” It is so easy to fall into the trap of looking for the worst in life. Someone once asked the late Paul Harvey, the famous radio personality, why the news media was so negative. He responded in an almost apologetic way by saying: “It seems that people get a feeling of importance to hear of others’ misfortune.”

People Set Themselves Up for Failure
It is unfortunate, but true. They compare their own boring and tedious lives to those who have experienced tragedy and are relieved it didn’t happen to them. By expecting the worst to happen, negative thinking people ensure they will never be disappointed. They never let their hopes get too high. They conveniently set their own lives up for mediocrity. If they are careful, nothing too good nor to too bad will ever happen to them.

Set the Pace
We must prevent that kind of thinking from poisoning our attitude toward our business. We need to run the type of business where people are glad to enter. This is the type of environment that makes them think “I’m glad I came in here to buy what I was looking for.” Remember, the owner and management team set the pace. It has been said that if the boss walks in with a frown on his or her face, it’s bound to affect the attitudes of everyone who works there, not to mention the customers.

A few months back, a business owner approached me after one of my public seminars and complained that he had been in the office supply business for over 20 years, during which time he had never seen it as bad as now. He told me that in order to cope with this type of environment, he had started bluntly telling his customers that if they didn’t like his prices or his service, they could take their business elsewhere. Needless to say, his business was doing poorly.

Expect the Best
A few weeks later, I spoke to another office supply owner who was a competitor of the one above. I asked him how his business was doing. He smiled and told me his business was doing excellent. As he talked, he described how his customers were pleasant and good-natured and seemed to like coming in to his store. He felt his business was doing well because of his attitude towards life. Same type of business, just a different attitude made all the difference in the world.

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Tom Borg is president of Tom Borg Consulting, LLC. He is a business consultant, speaker, coach and author. He helps companies and organization become more profitable by increasing their value and lowering their costs through the professional development of their managers and employees.

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