Do Not Vacuum Under Your Profits

Vacuuming the carpeting in my house is a relatively simple thing to do. Just run the vacuum over the carpet and it picks up the dirt. There is only one caveat. Don’t run over the vacuum’s wire or over clothes, belts, and important pieces of paper. That’s where the money is lost.

In your business keep doing the common-sense things that generate sustainable, profitable growth. I’m confident you know what they are and you know how to do them. Just keep doing those things. There is one caveat. Don’t do the things that ruin your success or the success of your organization. In other words, don’t run over your own wires and don’t suck up expensive clothes, belts, and important pieces of paper in your business.

How do you vacuum up your potential profits? By being in a bad mood and belittling a customer or an employee, and then having to spend a lot of time apologizing or dealing with hurt feelings or a lawsuit. By rushing through your work and missing an important detail that represented all of the profit on a given project.

I once coached the president of a billion-dollar construction company that operated on 3% margins. He told me the key to his company’s financial success was avoiding the big losers, the projects that cost his company money. By avoiding those, his company was able to make a good profit year after year. In your business, avoid the “big loser” moments that suck up your time, energy, and profits.

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