7 Comfort Zone Busters To Ignite Your Business

I have an important message for you today. If you want to expand your business, increase customer loyalty and have double-digit increases in sales you have GOT to stay out of the comfort zone. That means you and your teammates must be willing to be uncomfortable.

Have you ever shopped in a store where every employee is in their own comfort zone? What is the service like? What behavior do you see?

Here’s how I see it. Often, I can’t find an associate and when I do, it looks like they are just going through the motions with very low energy. They do tasks with their head down. They walk by me, avoiding eye contact and not offering a greeting. They don’t listen when I ask a question or they tell me they are new here or it’s not their department. If I have a question or concern, they just roll their eyes if I sound even a little bit annoyed. They talk to each other (over my head) and avoid communicating with customers who are signaling for attention. In fact, they can be unconscious and very focused on their own personal needs. I’ve had employees arguing about their schedules in front of me or voicing their complaints about the company in front of customers. I have even heard more than I ever wanted to know about their personal issues. Lately, I’ve seen some “sneak-texting” while on the selling floor.

During super busy days there are different comfort zone behaviors based on a perception that there are more demands. When there are crowds of customers, associates begin to rush and they race by customers without a greeting. They work on their own agenda, believing that they are completely frazzled and overwhelmed “trying to get it all done.” Their facial expressions are pinched. When they are engaged with customers they give them what they want and cut the conversation short. They are impatient, wanting to get on to the next task.

How does this behavior affect you wanting to spend your money? It makes me want to go elsewhere. This behavior indicates a lack of awareness and it can be a drain on your results.

Our Brain Is Not Our “Friend”

Are these associates trying to be rude? Not at all. Are they aware of their behavior? No, they are just operating by habit; on “autopilot.” It is a state of unconsciousness, a lack of awareness and not being present. When someone is in their comfort zone, whom are they serving? They slip into unconsciousness and begin serving themselves.

Now here is something you may not have known. Our brain loves autopilot. Our brain doesn’t like to think – it prefers habits. One of our brain’s primary roles is to protect us from “perceived danger.” So the only time we really becomes conscious is when our brain gets the signal for “fight” or “flight” and then we react. After the “danger” has passed, we either go back in our comfort zone (flight) or we stay out and take action (fight.)

7 Comfort Zone Busters To Ignite Your Business

Here are seven comfort zone busters I use with my clients that you can apply immediately to get yourself, your team and your business out of the comfort zone and into tremendous success.

1. Rekindle Your Vision With Your Team

Whenever I feel like I’m in a rut I return to my vision to make sure it still inspires me and that it is focused on serving others as well – win-win. You can refresh your vision with your team and turn up the energy. Get a flip chart and markers and have a stand up brainstorming session with your team. Write all of their responses by filling in the following blanks of each sentence with energized, exciting, descriptive words. Get as many responses as possible (30 at least), and write them down word for word.

  1. The purpose of our business is to _________________.
  2. We fulfill our purpose by doing these things _________________. (list at least 30)
  3. We know we have exceeded our customer’s expectations when we hear or see _________________.

Post the flip chart page and circle the actions you are going to do immediately. Make it a game with goals and rewards. When you are all jumping up and down with new ideas you all want to do right away you have hit the sweet spot.

2. Shift your mindset from self to customer

Most business people think of themselves first. It’s only natural. They create their products and services offers from their own perspectives. It’s time to get out of the comfort zone and take it one more step. Put yourself into the mind of your current customers. What are they concerned about? What are they trying to accomplish?

3. Transform your customers into clients

Here’s our distinction. A “customer” is someone who buys your goods or services and leaves. A client is entirely different relationship – someone who comes back over and over and is a part of your extended “family.” Clients are worth thousands to you every year. Brainstorm how you and your team can approach your customers to convert them into clients? How would you encourage them to come back?

4. Conduct A Survey

Just ask your clients what they want. Conduct an Intercept Survey to find out all that interests them. Ask them what they like about your company and what they’d like you to do next. . Ask them what’s bothering them. Ask them anything you like – the answers will almost always provide you with new, refreshing ideas. (Yes, we can assist you in developing a customized Intercept Survey.)

5. Make It Easier For People To Do Business With You

This is not the time to toughen your credit policies or your return policies.  Find ways to make it easy for people to do business with you. If your competitors are not providing personalized service, welcome their customers with open arms.  Offer education.  Deliver for a small fee.  Stay open longer.  Extend warranties. Provide better service.

6. Take Massive Action

In the end, the only thing that really makes a difference is action. Don’t worry about whether it’s going to work or not. Take risks that will start new trends. If it might produce the results you want, do it! Find out how well it worked. Then do the next thing, find out if that worked, and so on.

7. Not If, But How

Think of that wild and crazy idea you or a member of your team had recently. The one where you said to yourself, “That would be great, but there’s just no way.” Now we shift our thinking to – “If there was a way, what would it be?” That’s real power — turning your vision into reality. It is a mindset that creates the breakthrough! Breakthrough thinking says “We are all committed to the possibility so what can we do next?”

Comfort zone? It’s the enemy of business!

Put these steps into action and you will see great results. As you’re “wowing” new customers, make sure to build loyalty and turn them into clients.

Kathryn Dager, MA
Profitivity Inc.
Office:  (310) 477-8333
Fax:  (310) 478-7072
E-mail:  Profitivity@earthlink.net
Website:  www.ProfitivityInc.com