DGAS stand for Don’t Give a S*&! and it is a good principle to do business by if you are in the advisory business like me. It doesn’t mean you are malicious or mean or provide bad advice, it means you can’t worry about how people react to your advice or your insights. It means you give the advice that you think is right, and not worry about how people react to it, because you know it’s the right advice.
As a consultant and strategic advisor, here’s what DGAS means to me:
- You don’t chase bad prospects or opportunities
- You don’t worry about “lost” business (which is really business you never had)
- Your happiness isn’t tied to whether or not you close business
- You tell clients and prospects what you are thinking, not what they want to hear
- You build relationships on your terms, not others
- You follow your process, not that of others
- You don’t worry about things you can’t control
- You don’t put undo pressure on yourself to do too many things at once
- You don’t overthink things
- You do your best and go home
What does DGAS mean for you?
A recent article in the Globe and Mail discussed how some hotel chains are beginning to use apps and kiosks to check guests in, so those guests can bypass the front desk.
Here are some musings on that idea:
- Airlines are already doing this by allowing passengers to check-in online the day before their flight and use electronic boarding passes, so the technology already exists. The unknown factor is whether guests want to bypass the front desk.
- Disney Hotels uses floating staff with iPads to check guests in, thus providing a person to speak with, but avoiding check in lines. They actually check you in while you are unloading your baggage so there is virtually no waiting from the time you arrive at the hotel to the time you have your key.
- Hotels want to be careful about how hard they push this idea out to customers as checking in at the front desk provides them an opportunity to engage with their guests. If they lose that opportunity, they will need to find a different way of engaging. Maybe a quick phone call or visit 30 minutes after the guest arrives.
- Offering a choice lets the guest decide, so it doesn’t mean removing the front desk altogether.
- The online check-in or kiosk would seem to be attractive to business travelers or guests arriving late who just want to get to their room and don’t need the live interaction when they check-in.
- Like any other technology option, success will be in how it is rolled out and executed, not the technology itself.
There are many books that will tell you how to be a successful entrepreneur, but I wanted to simplify it. Being successful as an entrepreneur, and especially a consultant like myself, requires certain characteristics. If you can master these, you will be successful:
- Critical thinking skills
- Passion for what you do
- Strong leadership
- Good work ethic
- Show respect to others
- Have a pleasant disposition
- Work with speed
- Open-minded to learning and new ideas
- Have the power of language
- Offer pragmatic solutions
- Work with humour
This is a good list to start with if you want to be successful in any career that requires you to work with and influence others. Let me know if there are other characteristics that you feel were not on this list.
I was out with a colleague yesterday and he asked me “What are the factors that separate the successful organizations from the rest?” I thought about it for a minute and replied with two key traits:
- They are able to align their tactics with the strategy and direction of the organization
- They foster a culture of innovation (I define innovation as making incremental improvements) and excellence
Aligning strategy and tactics mean that everyone in the organization not only knows the in which direction the organization wants to move, but also their specific role in helping the organization get there. Too many organizations focus on the completion of activities, not the achievement of results. And those activities are often not aligned with the future state the organization wants to achieve.
Fostering a culture of innovation and excellence means that employees come to work looking for ways to improve the way the organization operates and they make choices that add value to customers and business partners. Collaboration is key and so is ensuring that the metrics used to show success align with the culture the organization wants to maintain. Metrics often determine how people behave.
There are many other things that are important, but these are the two key things that make organizations consistently successful. On a scale of 1-5, how would you rate yourself in these two areas?