“Yeah, but” are the two most destructive words in business (and your personal life). We can speak these two words audibly or just think it. Agreeing with everyone all the time shows a total lack of critical thinking. That said, earnestly listening to someone’s point to the end may lead to creative ideas that generate new processes; a game-changer for your business. The maker of the iPhone said it best, “It doesn’t make sense to hire smart people and tell them what to do; we hire smart people so they can tell us what to do.” If you’re lucky enough to have smart employees, listen to them, don’t knee-jerk and shoot down their ideas with your “yeah, but” responses.
I know a CEO consultant that laughs about his excuse box he uses with his employees. The box is filled with small slips of paper reflecting mostly real excuses – “I was late to the office because of traffic”, “I didn’t finish the project because I wasn’t given enough time”, “The report is late because I had a problem with my laptop”…you get the idea. The illustrative point is that whatever excuse your employee gives you is probably just as good as any random excuse in the box.
If you own your company, what excuses are you telling yourself? Are your sales not where you want them to be? Are they trending downward over time? Whose fault is it? Your employees? No, it’s you the CEO. You might be telling yourself a lot of “yeah, buts” like, “I want to get Client X as a new client, but they don’t want to go through the vendor approval process to get another appraiser added to their list.” It would be good to work for Client Y, but they already have appraisers that they like to use.”
Other examples of “yeah buts” in commercial appraising today:
- “Yeah I would love to use a shared comp database, but I’m too busy cranking out appraisals.”
- Have you thought of using report writing software? “Yeah, but it would be too hard to implement in my office.”
- Yeah it would be helpful to track job details, due dates and bidding trends, but I’m not sure it’s worth the time and money.
Excuses are not productive; they hold us back from our successes:
- “Success requires no explanations. Failure permits no alibis.” Napoleon Hill
- “No one ever excused his way to success.” Dave Del Dotto
- “Excuses are a powerful thing. One excuse can negate 100 opportunities.” Bobby Darnell
- “Excuses and complaints are signs of a dreamless life.” Bangambiki Habyarimana
- “Talking isn’t all about excuses…it’s more about action.” Deyth Banger
Excuses have no place in your business or your personal life. Saying those two words is commensurate with a child retort, “I don’t want to” or “I don’t have to listen to you”. If you haven’t noticed, our marketplace is changing. Your competition is getting smarter. In some instances, our clients’ wants don’t match up with what appraisers are providing. A disconnect. “Yeah, but we’ve always done appraisals this way.” Maybe so, but…