It’s not THE economy. It’s YOUR economy that matters!

I’m not an economist.  If I were, I would make bold predictions about the economy – predictions having a 50/50 shot of coming true.  But, I am not. I’m just a guy who spends my days observing the inefficiencies in business and my nights dreaming about how to fix them.  I watch the talking heads argue about the unemployment rate.  Is it Bush’s fault or Obama’s?  Does it really matter?  What does matter is what you are doing to improve your own economy.  Trying to decipher the uncontrollable only distracts us from seizing control of the controllable.  Take charge of your business!  Here are four things you can control:

#1 PITA Processes – PITA processes are the annoying speed bumps in your business – glitches in your workflows that slow you down, rattle your nerves, and stifle productivity.  Find a PITA process, map it out, and focus on the solution for one week or one month – whatever it takes, bust the barrier.  Don’t waver, don’t get distracted – wipe it out!

#2 Customer Gripes – Develop a system to quantify, track, and actively correct those mistakes that lead to customer complaints.  “Pareto and prevent.” Pareto analysis is a simple tool used for counting and prioritizing causes of problems.  Proactively attack the causes of those complaints and install safeguards to prevent their reoccurrence.

#3 Loose Cannons – Ready.  Aim. Fire your worst employee.  You’ve been wrestling with this decision for weeks. Now is the time.  You’ve coached, mentored, advised, disciplined, and followed every other inspirational Maxwell principle.  Sometimes, there just isn’t a better solution.  Rather than continue to allow morale to sink and attitudes to sour, just do it. You’ll feel better in the morning.

#4 New Ideas – Find and utilize resources on how to improve your business (such as The Elegant Process by Jason Kilgore).  The best ideas come when we can escape the firefighting and reflect on new and fresh ideas.  The guy who invented the parachute didn’t think of it during a sky dive (or if he did, he was likely not given credit for it).

Your personal economy depends on you, the decisions you make, and the success or failure of those decisions.  While we may never know for sure the cause or see the end of the economic downturn, we can only move forward.  Create your own success, fix your own problems, innovate new solutions.  In the end, it’s only your economy that matters.

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