Window of Opportunity by Micky Calcott
by Micky Calcott
April 11th, 2018

A Change Could Do You Good

Feel the fear and do it anyway.” This is a quote that has rung true with me throughout my career. It’s the title of a best-selling book by Susan Jeffers, but is also a phrase that I’ve heard and used on a number of occasions. It’s served me well as a business owner and I’d like to explain why.

Since founding my business in 1998, it’s gone through a lot of change. Some of it has occurred naturally, some of it has been required of us. The majority of changes, however, have been undertaken proactively—with the clear aim of staying ahead of the curve, changing and adapting before it is necessary in order to grow and develop.

To be frank, a high percentage of the biggest changes have required investment and, of course, there is nothing that focuses the mind quite like spending money. A commitment to using capital is one of the big stumbling blocks when it comes to change. It’s easy to have doubts as to whether what you are planning will work, especially when things are ticking along OK and even easier to talk yourself out of it because it may require a big investment. In my experience, this is a mistake.

Here at The Window Film Company, we’ve changed by adding to the workforce, purchasing new equipment, entering into new partnerships, purchasing new software, implementing new processes and adopting new practices. We’ve changed pricing structures and we’ve even changed by moving the layout desks in the office. I’m pleased to say that most of these projects have been positive for the business, whether it be a healthier bottom line, increased efficiency or improved staff productivity, but all of these changes—no matter the size or the cost—required a decisive and sometimes bold decision simply to go ahead.

Risky Investments

Two of these recent examples were at the opposite end of the spectrum when it came to investment, but both had potential risk attached. The latest reconfiguration of the office involved incorporating slightly smaller desks for a number of colleagues. This change was a slight one, but I was sure it would have a big impact. It would mean a far better and more efficient use of space, allowing us to comfortably home our increased numbers of staff. The concern I had was the reaction of the team to smaller desks. I’m committed to creating a comfortable and inspirational place to work and was worried that this move would be seen as a step backwards. Of course, I needn’t have worried. The team was brilliant and fully embraced the plan with a full understanding of why it was being done, but with initial concerns about their reaction, it would have been an easy one to talk myself out of.

We’ve also incorporated new state of the art cutting technology into our workflow. This was clearly a more costly decision, but involved a similar internal battle, weighing up the pros (the ability to streamline our process, to be quicker and more efficient) against the cons (the considerable financial investment, the time required to install the machinery and to train the team, the possibility that sales wouldn’t increase enough to warrant the financial commitment) before deciding to go ahead. Again, it would have been easy to maintain the status quo, things were fine as they were, but I knew that if we genuinely want to strive for growth and improvement, we needed to go for it.

I’m not advocating doing things for the sake of it, or rushing into implementing plans that you haven’t researched or fully planned, but would urge you to remember why you started your business or career. What did you want to achieve? What was your goal? It’s possible that feeling the fear and doing it anyway might help you get that bit closer.

Until next time… toodle-pip!

This blog is from Focus on Film, the weekly e-newsletter that covers the latest news regarding window film and related products, including paint protection film. Click HERE to sign up—there is no charge. Interested in a deeper dive? Free subscriptions to Window Film magazine in print or digital format are available. Subscribe at no charge HERE.

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