Thoughts on Law and Life

The Official Blog of Astrab Legal Services LLC

Competence, Consistency & Character (Part II)

As I sit about an outbound train watching the Cleveland skyline fade off into the snowy distance, I wonder how this once fine city and region has fallen so hard and fast. I believe part of the answer is consistency of its leaders. We have an elected body, both on the city and county level, that does not seem to know how to run a hot dog stand let alone a major metropolitan area. We keep hearing promises but there is never follow through or we let seemingly beneficial projects slip away due to inattention or outright incompetency. We need leaders who offer us proposals, work those proposals to their completion and present a finished product to the citizens that will help us to move forward as a region.

Consistency is the key to getting things done, attracting new customers/clients and moving forward as an individual or business owner. If a client is told that the project will be done Tuesday, it better darn well be done. If you tell clients that a weekly newsletter will be sent out to them, that newsletter should arrive as promised or confidence will begin to wane on the part of those with whom we do business. On the personal side, if we promise our kids that we will set aside time each week to go out to eat or play in the park it is critically important that the schedule be maintained as promised.

In life and in business, consistency is the key to getting noticed and appreciated. It is an absolute turn-off to deal with someone who cannot seem to have any consistency to their lives. If we can show our business and life partners that we are capable of maintaining consistency in our dealings, we will see definite benefits.

How can we be more consistent?

  • Get organized – consistency is the direct result of an organized life. Get a calendar…in fact get two calendars – one online or on a phone with pop-up reminders and access to critical information and one on paper that can be carried throughout the day. Putting things in our calendars serves as a visible reminder of your duties and obligations. Once you have the calendars, make it a habit to update them and check them several times throughout the day. It is useless to have them if they are not referred to several times a day!
  • Do not over-extend yourself – don’t over-schedule your time or take on tasks for which you are unprepared or unable to handle. Don’t be afraid to say ‘no’ to something if you believe it will cause you to delay an existing project or might not get done in the required time frame due to those existing projects.
  • Let others know your schedule – make sure that others know your commitments and allow them to serve as a ‘bully’ on your time to get things done. If you are slacking, a not-so-gentle reminder from your assistant or spouse about a deadline fast approaching may be the difference in getting the job done or failing.
  • Get up early – our mind’s most active time is early in the morning. A quiet and empty office is a great place to get things done free of distractions.
  • Set aside dedicated ‘work’ time – make sure that those around you know that you are not to be disturbed unless an emergency arises during the time frame that you set aside. Be anti-social and just get the work done that needs finishing!

These concepts may seem very Business 101 but far too often are simply ignored in real life due to the pressing concerns of our daily commitments. Try to remember that consistency is the key to long-term success and respect!

Michael K. Astrab is the principal attorney for Astrab Legal Services LLC, a general practice law firm located in Cleveland, Ohio. He may be reached at (216) 577-0013 or via e-mail at astrablegal@sbcglobal.net. This blog is designed for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.

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January 20, 2009 - Posted by | Financial, Law, Legal, Life, sales & marketing, small business | , , , , , ,

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