Day 10 – Taking Responsibility Is More Than Owning Your Mistakes

There are many ways to describe the act of “taking responsibility”, Miriam Webster explains “responsibility” as “moral, legal or mental accountability”.  When I asked my 13-year-old, what it meant to him, he stated “to take pride in something”.  WOW!  This was a much different point of view than I thought he would respond with.

Like many of you, I would equate “taking responsibility” with the negative outlook of “owning your actions”.  Many years ago, I was working for a company that wanted to default one of its tenants.  The owner was hoping that they wouldn’t pay the several months of rent that was due, so we could get them to vacate the property.  However, at the last minute, the tenant overnighted the money and we had to sign for the package.  I sent the check to our accounts receivable (A/R) clerk to have it cashed.  When the owner realized that we were cashing the check, he began screaming at the A/R clerk and threatened to fire her for messing up the default process.  I heard his rantings from across the building and having a good idea why he was upset, I ran over to encounter a furiously angry man and a terrified young lady.  I jumped right in and told him that I had given her the check and that if he wanted to fire me, I would go and clean out my desk immediately.  Once I said this, he quieted down enough for me to explain that even if we hadn’t cashed the check, our receptionist still signed for it and the tenant would have proof that we received it.  No matter how he felt about it, the default was NOT going to happen.  No, I did not lose my job, but instead I gained the respect of many of my co-workers.  I guess you could say that I “took pride” in my job that day.

My son, was right on the mark with his “take pride in something” answer.  The first and foremost responsibility of a salon/spa owner is to create value for all people and organizations that are associated with the company.  Bringing this attitude into your business every day, ensuring that your customers, employees, vendors, shareholders and government agencies benefit from your endeavors, will ensure that your business will continue to thrive.

Let’s look at a few ideas to get you started in the process of “taking responsibility” for your business:

  1. If you make a mistake, own it and learn from it.  Make sure you allow your employees to do the same.  If many of your cosmetologists, barbers or massage therapists are making the same mistakes, have a training session.  This is a great time to set the “tone at the top” and reinforce the standards of your organization.  Remember the post from yesterday?  Failure can be a great teacher!
  2. You’ll need a plan that is going to drive your everyday decisions.  Figure out what those short and long-term goals are and focus your energy in that direction.  Decide who you need on your team and don’t forget about those tasks that can be outsourced to Excerebus CPA Firm.  This is a much more effective and inexpensive way to ensure you are ready with accurate financial information when you need it.  Our post from Day 3 was about doing your “one thing” with dedication and focus, your business plan is going to be your map to success.
  3. Make sure you are taking care of your responsibilities to the government. Licensing paperwork, quarterly estimated tax payments, income tax filings etc.…  You don’t want to miss these deadlines!  Seriously, you don’t want the IRS contacting you and taking up your time with something that could have been avoided.
  4. Continue to learn and provide learning opportunities for your employees. Go beyond just keeping up with those continuing education courses that are required for license renewal.  Leadership, financial and management courses are just as important as classes to learn the latest coloring techniques and cutting styles.
  5. Be grateful for the things you have and for the opportunities that are going to present themselves.

I have a friend that owns a salon in TX and she embodies these ideas whole heartedly.  Most of the stylists in her salon came to her right out of cosmetology school, which meant that she was had to do a lot of supplemental teaching and mistakes were made.  She had a plan on how to open her salon and run a successful business.  She followed her plan and a year ago moved into a larger building.  Not only is she a great stylist that keeps up with the latest trends, but she periodically takes all the cosmetologists in her salon to trade shows.  There they learn new styles and skills to enhance the services they can provide to their clients.  She makes this a fun trip, a mini working vacation of sorts, and it is the perfect opportunity for her and her employees to bond.  Believe me, going into her salon was fun because everyone was so supportive of each other.  Their excitement creates a wonderful ambiance and that comes from the owner’s pride in what she was doing, not just for her, but for everyone.

Contact us at Excerebus, or 407-988-5647, so we can help you “take responsibility” and gain more for yourself, your employees and give the most to your customers.

Categories: General Business

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