November 14, 2011

Recently I came across a quote by Helen Keller…

“When one door of happiness closes, another opens: but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us.”

I started thinking about all the ways I tend to stand there and stare at a closed door, analyzing how I can get it unlocked again in my life. I compared it to times that I was able to quickly walk away from one closed door looking for an open one. In thinking I became pretty sure that we all have areas of our lives that the ‘closed door syndrome’ affects us in adverse ways. For me, in my personal life, I tend to have a harder time walking away from a closed door because I am more emotionally invested, but in business I move on fast. How?

In business sometimes management strategies get old, marketing tactics become less interesting and operational policies become stale. Throughout the past six years of running Bellacures, the nail salon chain I founded in 2006, one of the best skills I have developed is to chuck old strategies quickly before they cause trauma and put in place new ones that may or may not* work better. Here’s what I ask myself:
1. Is this strategy bringing the results I need?
2. Is there room for improvement?
3. Is the strategy easy to follow?
4. Is there a chance that continuing the use of this strategy will have a negative long term effect?

They say if it is not broken, don’t fix it. But I believe in order to grow, it is more effective to look for flaws than wait for a catastrophe to fix something. If I see that there is room for improvement I come up with a new strategy. Sometimes it is easier to change strategies than to try to make the one you have work for you. This week, ask yourself if there are any strategies in your business [or life] that you can change to bring better results and ease.
*Remember that you need to have courage to take on new ways… because they may not work better and you have to look for new ones again. The key is to realize there are other doors; and most of the time getting a door unlocked is a lot more difficult and time consuming than spending time finding a door that is already open for you.

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