Jerry & Sheryl Isenhour, CVC Success Group coaches

CVC Succcess Group coaches Jerry & Sheryl Isenhour

Fall is the busiest time of the year in the chimney and hearth industry. Often, we are so busy we don’t take the time to step back and see what is going on around us. Just like when traveling a superhighway, where you are so hyper-focused you can’t see what isn’t right in front of you. And just like on the highway, tunnel vision can be dangerous for your business. It equals missed opportunities and missed profits. Join us this week as we talk about how to overcome superhighway tunnel vision and survey opportunities that are still going on around you even when you are enjoying the craziness of the season.

The Chimney and Fireplace Success Network is a weekly podcast brought to you by the CVC Success Group and hosted by industry expert, Jerry Isenhour. Each week you will find new presentations to assist business owners and managers in turning their business dreams into their business realities.


Jerry Isenhour: You know right now, I bet business for you is like you’re traveling down a superhighway. You’re traveling down an interstate at breakneck speed. You’re probably exceeding the speed limit. You probably got it pedal to the floor, and you wonder if there are any speed traps on the side of the road ahead. You know and see the problem with this time of year, it’s a problem with being so busy, and on this superhighway of business, is many times you don’t even see the view to the side of the road.

You don’t see what’s happening around you. Unless someone comes up suddenly traveling at a significantly higher rate of speed and you see them zoom right past you. This is the fall season, the season that is just like a superhighway. So let’s take a little break, be back in just a minute with you. Stay with me, as I am going to talk about what may be whizzing by you, that you never even see or notice.

It is November and likely things are being missed

It is November of 2020 as I record this session. We’ve just had an election in this country, and you’re so busy. Every single day I bet its work and work and work and work, and then work some more. Quite plainly, there’s more work than there are hours in the day. And quite plainly, likely there are things being missed. And that’s what this is all about. What are the sights that you are missing in your business? What’s lurking out there that can be a really big miss? Because see this is what we see happen.

So often we get so busy we are just engrossed, and we are spending so much of our time fighting fires, that we are not doing the true role of management. And part of that role in management is being able to track and measure what is happening in your business, and establishing the strategies, the plan, the GPS that mistakes do not reoccur.

Mistakes always fall to three things

As I have said many times, when there is a mistake it is going to fall to three different things number one, you do not have a process or an SOP to follow. Number two, the SOP of the process is wrong. Maybe it’s outdated, maybe it’s improperly worded, or whatever. Or number three, you got somebody that just doesn’t follow that SOP. Now it could be from the way it’s worded, it could be from the person’s lack of comprehension of what’s there.

It could be their lack of training, or it could be that they just really don’t care. And you see that’s what you’ve got to find out as a manager. Therefore, it is so important as you travel down this highway of success that you are on right now, that you are seeing what is going wrong. What’s happening? Because this is what can happen on the superhighway. You can take your eyes off the road for just a moment, and somebody hits the brakes right in front of you.

Any number of things can put you right into the ditch

Or there is a big pothole or a tire blows out or any number of things that can just put you right into the ditch. Or even worse, can do bodily harm or damage to you. So you got to be able to track and measure what’s happening, this is part of your role as a management. And I want you to give it a little exercise to go through, I want you to predict right now what will be the gross income for your company for the year 2020 if you continue on the course your own.

What will be that gross income for the year? Now just for sake of discussions and make this easier, let’s say that your gross is one million dollars. A million dollars in gross receipts. And I say 1 million because that’s going to give it the easiest way for me to kind of do the computations that I need to share with you. So we’ve done 1 million dollars in business in the year 2020 when it’s all said and done. Now you may have done less than that, you may have done tremendously more.

How much is 10% of your gross income for the year

You could be 5 million, 10 million the process is still the same. Because what I want you to look at is, it’s what is 10% of that amount of your gross income is for the year? And then I want you to figure what is 15% of that gross amount of money that came into your business in a year. And if we base this on a 1 million dollar gross income for the year, that 10 to 15% figure is between 100 and $150,000. Does my math work for you? That 10% to 15%. Now why, why do I point this out? Why do I draw your attention to this 10 to 15% figure? Which is on that million-dollar business, a hundred thousand to 150,000 in dollars. That’s right, dollar bills.

It is all about the green folding cash

GFC as an old friend of mine told me one time, is green folding cash. You see the reason I want to point out this 10% to 15% figure is, that is the average waste of so many companies. 10% to 15% of their gross income each month. Now as you look at this, and I’ve told you, I’ve shared this with you before, and these are not from my studies, these are from the studies of lean experts. Lean is doing more with less.

The lean answer, if a lean consultant were to visit and take a hard look, one of the things that they say is waste will usually be shown as 95% time and 5% in materials, this is what the research shows. Also, lean experts will commonly share with you that if you can reduce your weights by five percent, that you can increase your bottom line by a total of 35%.

We are talking true profit

Now again, we are talking true profit. Because all the waste that you produce, it comes right off of your net profit. And what you’ve also got to do, you’ve got to have sales to compensate for the waste. You know as a coach, as a consultant what I see is everybody wants to raise their sales as a rule. But raising your sales is only one way that you’re going to be more successful. The other way is to take as much waste as you can and turn it into profit.

Stop the drain where the money is going

And that means you have got to stop that drain of where the money is going to, where is the waste factor in your business. Because I can guarantee you, there’s waste running out your door every single day. There’s waste going down your drain every day of the week, every week, week after week after week. What are you throwing away? Just walk around look in your warehouse. Is your warehouse actually a functionable full of materials that are having turns on a regular basis?

Or do you have some museum relics that are sitting there? Improperly ordered things, stuff that never got sold. Stuff that’s been sitting there for years, it’s just taking up space. But you got an emotional attachment to it, you paid for it and you know one day you’re going to use this, you can bet that goes through our minds. But see this is what we must do as managers, we have got to look at what monies are flowing out, and we have got to divert these monies into the profit side of the business.

This is what business is all about

Because this is what business is all about. It’s not there just to provide you a job, it should be providing you a return after all it’s an investment. And you’ve done a lot of sacrifices to build this business. And doesn’t it make sense to get the largest return you could for this? Because if you get this return, what’s going to happen is, it’s going to put the dollars in your pocket for you to do the things in life that you started that business for.

Because that’s the purpose of a business, to give us the resources, to give us the funding to do the things that we want to do. Now what you do with that, that’s up to you. But you’ve got to have this plan together. So I’m going to encourage you, if you’re just traveling down this superhighway at breakneck speed, probably texting taking your eyes off the road, focus in. Focus in on what is happening, focus in on what is going down the drain, what are you losing every single day, what is going on as waste.

As we get busy the waste multiplies

You see this is what I see, often as we get so busy, the waste often magnifies greatly, but we are moving at such a breakneck speed, we cannot even keep up with it. Things just pile up. And that is where I hope you to focus on this week. So focus on this superhighway, focus on the viewpoint of what you could see if you looked in your mirrors, your side mirrors, your rearview mirrors. Keep attention to what’s coming up and may pass you.

Pay attention to what’s on the side the road, pay attention to the sites that you can see. And you want to learn from this and build the strongest business that you can. Again keep it in mind, what’s the purpose for you to have this business. The purpose is to bring you the funds and the resources to do the things that you want to do in life, no matter what that is, it’s your business. And you are hopefully running a for-profit business.

The home of the free enterprise system

This is America, this is the home of the free and the brave. It’s also the home of the free enterprise system. Yes, you may have been disappointed with the election this previous week, and on the other side you may be ecstatic with it, that’s your personal point of view. And what I’m talking about here, it doesn’t have a political stance, there’s no politics involved in what I’m talking about here. If you’re depressed right now, my god you got to get over it, get past it.

If you’re ecstatic right now, more power to you, congratulations. But the thing is what you’ve got to do is buckle down to business. Because we’re all operating in the same world. And what we know is that many profit as the world changes. And the world will change, we’ve been talking about that in previous segments. Will the world change? The world always changes. Change is inevitable, it’s going to happen. So with that, I’m going to turn the mic over to Sheryl.

Sheryl’s going to be with you in just a minute, I have no idea what her message of the day is going to be. But as always, I am assured, and I want to assure you to stick around because what she will share with you will be moments of wisdom for you. I will be back with you right after Sheryl, appreciate you being with us today.

Sheryl Isenhour: I know saying you should be less focused sounds strange; we tell people to focus all the time. We many times criticize people when they’re not focused. So you ask, how could I be too focused? First, you can be so focused on your goals or things around you, that you miss other potential better opportunities.

Your business can become irrelevant

Second, we assume that the path we are on will always be the best way for us to achieve our goals and our opportunities. We are often so focused that, we will fail to pay enough attention to the changing world around us. Then you and your company are surprised, perhaps fatally so, when the internet and the other delivery systems make your business or what you have to sell increasingly irrelevant. Yes, your life and your business can become irrelevant.

Another problem is that as we lay out the path to achieve our goals today, we often believe that tomorrow will be pretty much like today. But with the election, it probably will. Without the election, it probably would have. So just remember, it can be. If you do sit there and think it will be as that day was, and you continue to assume your plan is correct. And then you encounter an obstacle on the way to achieving your success.

Reaction is to overcome it

Your first, second, and your third reaction is to overcome it. In other words, you focus even harder. What you should do instead of focusing on your plan, try focusing on your goal. By doing this, you become open to new and potentially much better ideas. If you are committed to the goal, instead of your plan, you can then become much more flexible. Some would say it’s becoming less focused, I would call it increasing your chances of success. We seem always to be speeding so fast as Jerry said, a few things can slow you down and allow you to smell the roses.

We were always told as a child stop and smell the roses. But first, you must be present in the moment right now. This very second is different from the last, take time to notice the slight changes between the moments and the previous ones.

Don’t let them pass unseen. Notice when you breathe, notice whether you’re breathing into your chest or into your stomach, are they short shallow breaths. Is there any part of your body that feels the tension that you can release? What is the furthest thing you can hear right now? Take a second, listen right now. Tapping into your mindful self can help make the time ratio feel less anxiety-provoking by giving you a sense of control.

Wire our brains to be thinking of the future

I personally totally believe that the older we get; we also have more things to worry about. Having a never-ending to-do list can just wire our brains to be always thinking about the future, and miss out on what’s happening right in front of us. Take advantage of this moment to pause, and to be present. Second, intentionally take the time to reflect and process.

Question, how was your weekend? What did you do? Have you ever had a problem answering these questions, because you honestly don’t remember? When we’re operating in a stressful time in our lives, our brains become more equipped to think about the future instead of the past or the present. Depending on the amount of stress, it can feel challenging to recall any memory. Reflecting and processing your day is a simple mental workout to strengthen your brain.

Think about your day from the time you woke up

Around bedtime, I suggest think about your day from the time you woke up in the morning, till right before you started doing this reflective exercise. Think, then third, if you’ve never done it, try journaling daily. Every day, write down three things you accomplished and the three things you’re grateful for every day. These entries can be quite simple to huge, the size or the value does not matter, only that you do it. Journaling gives you the power to process today, and to review yesterday.

Write down your goals

It stimulates the memory and the learning capacity. Practicing this daily will also increase the feeling of well-being, and the overall mood that you have. Fourth, write down your goals, don’t just think about them, write them down. Think of the two to three things you want to accomplish today, this week, this month and this year write them down, track them. This simple time management skill can prevent the dreaded thought or one similar from happening such as wait, it’s already 2020, I told myself I was going to run a marathon by then.

Oh well, maybe next year. Fifth, write down your plan to accomplish your goals, and schedule in some time to do it. But sixth, and most important, prioritize time with family and friends. Ask someone to lunch you’ve been meaning to catch up with, don’t let time pass by, time waits for no man. Always be able at the end of the day to say I’m glad I did, instead of I wish I had.

Prioritize your life, make sure you hit all the things you need to do

I hope the time you spent listening today will be beneficial to you and your family, and your company. Again, prioritize your life, make sure you hit all the things that you need to do. Life waits for no man. With this, I’m going to turn it back over to Jerry to take a few more precious moments of your time to wrap up our conversation for today.

Jerry Isenhour.: So, if you run through your mind how you’ve been running down that superhighway of business over the last couple months. Have you thought about the sights you may be missing? I want you to think of something. I want you to imagine you put your hands out, and somebody put dry sand into the two hands you’re holding together.

It will leak right through your fingers

And how much of that sand will leak right between your fingers if you don’t have them tightly clenched together? And you see that’s what you got to do with your business. You got to implement the systems of tracking, of measurements. And get on a dedicated plan to convert those waste dollars into profit dollars. It can be done. Just imagine what if you could turn that 10 to 15% of waste that’s flowing through your fingers into profit dollars?

What would it be like if you could increase your bottom line many times over? Not from doing more business, not from getting more customers, rather simply keeping more of the profit dollars that come into your business. That’s going to give you the funding to do the things in this world that you want to do with the profits from your business.

Isn’t this why you started the business

And again, isn’t that why you started the business. Wasn’t the reason you started that business to set your own path, to be your own boss? But I’m sure somewhere along there, profit was a part of the picture, the return on the business. It’s just like a stock, are you going to invest into a stock that doesn’t give you a high return, or your business is a stock, it is an investment, it’s not just a job.

And that’s why you got to follow the classic advice of Michael Gerber as he gave in his e-myth, and the e-myth revisited. You got to slow down, and you got to invest the time in working on the business, not just working in the business. So if you just been working and working and working and running and running and running, and not taking a look at the sites you’re missing, maybe it’s a good time to start.

And with that, we’re going to end this episode of the chimney and fireplace success network. We appreciate you joining us as always. We are CVC success group, and what we are is a team of subject matter experts that can assist you in turning your business dreams into your business realities. See you next time on the next episode of the chimney and fireplace success network.