As some of you might know, I've owned a science for kids franchise in Houston for the last five years. Now, what you may not know is that, for the last four years, my franchise has been ranked number one in the country among all US franchises.
I am often asked, what the secret is behind our success. Today, I would like to share with you the three main reasons I was able to grow the company from nothing to the number one spot.
None of these reasons are earth-shattering, but they truly are the reasons why I am successful, in spite of the cutthroat competition that we have in our area.
If you prefer audio only, you can listen to the full episode on my podcast below or on iTunes.
1. Put systems in place.
This is very basic, but a lot of small businesses postpone putting systems in place until later down the road, whereas I started working on that from day one. Now, my business, Nutty Scientists of Houston, is all about science. Specifically, science for kids, it's all about making kids fall in love with science. It's very logistics heavy, as you can imagine. It's also a business where you have a lot of part-time employees coming through the door, and all of them need to be trained. Not only do they need to be trained when they’ve just started with us, but they also need to be trained weekly. Anybody who comes on board is able to train them very quickly and efficiently because I have an entire training system for every single class we teach. We also have systems in place for how we pack materials for classes, we have systems for how we store materials for classes, and we have systems for how we do marketing and sales. We have systems for everything, and this way, not only can I take myself out of repeatedly doing the same things over and over, but I can also be sure that the things are done by other people just right.
However, here is something very important to remember about your systems. It's not just about putting systems in place, it's about putting the right, proven, and successful systems in place. A lot of people forget that, they put the systems in place and then the systems don't work. What we've done in my business is I've actually walked that path of doing everything myself first. I've taught classes, I've done shows, I've done everything you can imagine myself, and I figured out how to do it the best we can possibly do it. Only then did I document the method, and only then did I create those systems. It's very important to not just put systems in place but to put the right systems in place.
2. Do not be afraid to hear 'no'.
You are going to hear 'no' many, many times in your business, and it sucks, there is just no other way to say it. It's really, really demotivating, and depressing, and upsetting, but what can you do, you know? If you don't like hearing 'no', you should not be an entrepreneur. That's how I look at it. So, from day one, I was out there doing sales and listening to 'no' many times until yeses starting coming in. Next thing I knew there were more and more yeses. However, I still hear 'no' all the time, and I still do a lot of cold calling when we're selling our new programs. I would call schools myself, and I would talk to the schools, and I would sometimes hear 'no', and that’s okay. Hearing 'no', is okay, it's unpleasant, but it's not about hearing 'no' and getting depressed for the rest of the day and eating cookies and going home. It is about hearing 'no', and just shaking it off, and making the next call.
3. Commit to outstanding customer service.
You can't imagine how many small businesses go belly up because they do not have exceptional customer service. I've always been into customer service, forever, even when I worked for corporate, I was always focused on customer service. It's very much an integral part of me, of how I think and how I do things. So for every one of the businesses that I've owned, and I've owned several businesses over the last two decades, I have been known to provide the best customer service in the industry, period. We do not take customer service for granted. We really, really strive to be the best. We really strive to bring the best to our clients, and by saying the best, I mean we go above and beyond what other service providers are doing. So if you want to be successful, if you want to be in business for a very long time, you need to make customer service your number one priority. And not just as a phrase, we are great at customer service, this has to be a part of every single day’s procedures. This has to be a part of your operation manual, and this has to be a part of how you run your business every single day.
There you have it. I wish you lots and lots of success in running your businesses, have a fantastic day.
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