Back when I was in high school (or it could have been shortly after; I do not really remember, and it does not really matter), I got a part-time job in the Don Randall Music Store in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. It was on my very first day that Mr. Randall-in a move that appeared almost like magic to me-taught me a great lesson.
It was the end of the afternoon, and we had just closed the store and locked the glass front doors. There were just three of us there-myself, another worker, and Mr. Randall-and we were occupied with the typical”end of the day” jobs: sweeping the floors, tallying the registers, etc..
He was kind of shabby looking, and he was carrying out a beat-up guitar case. I, looking for a great, policy-following worker on my first day, told him through the glass that we had been shut. I was about to repeat that we had been shut but that he could purchase some guitar strings when Mr. Randall came up behind me and asked what was going on. Shabby Guy repeated his desire to get some strings.
Instantly, Mr. Randall unlocked the door, saying,”Let’s get this young man some guitar strings.”
Okay, now here’s the part that blew me away. Did he have fresh guitar strings?
They were attached to his brand new Fender Stratocaster guitar… which he would be playing through his brand new Fender Twin Reverb amplifier.
I looked at Mr. Randall like he was a magician. In twenty minutes, he’d turned into a $5 purchase into a $500 sale-from a guy whom I would not have guessed had more than fifty bucks to his name. Mr. Randall looked at me and said,”Never let coverage get in the way of opportunity.”
Never let policy get in the way of chance.
That is good, do not you think?
What Mr. Randall taught me sounds obvious, doesn’t it? The purpose of the Don Randall Music Store was to sell musical instruments-not to close in time.
What’s the goal of your business? Do you, or any of your team members, every short-change that purpose under the guise of”following policy”? Are each of your staff members crystal clear on the purpose of the organization that they work for? Are you?
A recent survey showed that only one worker in seven could name even one of their organization’s most important goals.
Job #1, then, is teaching your team on the business’s goals. Don Randall’s goal was selling musical instruments.
Job #2 is to not let coverage get in the way of achieving these goals.