Now I know public transport generally gets a bum wrap for delayed services but this article is not about late trains. On the contrary, it’s about how far the transport service has come over the past 30 years.
I remember catching public transport as a kid back in Adelaide. Back then you’d purchase a return ticket either from the bus driver or a conductor on the train and tram. (Yes, this was a little while ago). The point is, back then, that was the only way of paying for your ride. That was the process. It was a bit of an honour system too, because you could effectively purchase a one way ticket but still do a round trip if you could get away with it. (Hey, I was a kid, alright!)
The point being, at some point in our history, we created a public transport system and in the process, a meeting was held to discuss the best way of getting commuters to pay for it. The result – paying people to walk the carriages of trains and trams checking and selling tickets. The best process at the time (granted we didn’t have the technology back then that we have now), but a process that was open to fare dodgers and eventually an angry public demanding a better system.
As a result, the payment process of today is simply putting money on your Opal card (or equivalent travel card for which ever state you reside) and then choose your public transport service from buses to trains to trams by simply tapping on and off at the start and finish of your commute.
This ‘ease of use’ process resonated with me as it highlights the importance of systems and processes. It made me think about the many times I’ve experienced the pain and frustration of not nailing a process in my own business. It made me realise, just like the ticketing system on public transport, we have to go through a level of frustration to correct and perfect a process. If we don’t, we never really move forward and we rarely learn.
I’ve run my business now for the past 9 years and over that time I have changed and updated my systems and processes on more occasions than I can count. Each time believing that I have finally cracked the absolute best way to seamlessly run my business, until it’s not. I’ve learnt that the challenge is not just correcting a process. The real challenge is recognising and dealing with frustration when it hits, and ensuring it doesn’t effect you personally.
Working with clients and their goals can be the same. What works for one person may not work for another. Good trainers work with and adjust their approach to help each client achieve their personal goals, and along the way this can be very frustrating. Especially for the client as they change their diet and update their training. This frustration can lead to clients losing focus and wondering if it’s all worth it. This is the real challenge… dealing with this frustration when it hits, and ensuring it doesn’t effect you personally.
Saying ‘just don’t get frustrated’ is not the answer. It’s easy to say but hardly an option if you’re the one frustrated. The best way to limit your frustration is to turn your focus on what works and to build on that. To learn from past mistakes and to avoid making them a second time. Most importantly, to stay the course. Keep the focus on the goal. Whether that’s building your own business or wanting to improve your health and fitness.
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