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Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 1
  • Lesson Nugget: If you continually measure the effectiveness of your checklists, they will continue getting better over time.
  • Notable Quotable: "Trust but verify."- Ronald Reagan
  • Ask Yourself: What kind of behaviors and results are you accepting in your business?
  • Notable Quotable: "Nothing works unless you do."- Maya Angelou
  • Notable Quotable: "You can expect what you inspect."- W. Edward Deming



-And this is the system. So by very definition of this business coaching here, or where it gets to the workflow here is, if you're defining something and you act on it-- so if you make the checklist, then you act on it, and you measure it and you're like, well, that didn't work.


-Then refine it you come back to center, and you do this over and over and over, right? So your checklists get a little bit better year after year, correct?

ARTHUR GREENO: Absolutely.

CLAY CLARK: OK. So there's probably dumb mistakes you're no longer making, that you used to make every day.

-Absolutely. And the other to remember is, given enough time, every system will fail. For a business coaching example, your car. Your car works well because you have all these systems in place to make it work. Well, given enough time, the wheel may fall off, or something will stop working. And that's happened with my checklist before.

For example, just recently I went to go look at it and I said, why are these items on here? We don't even carry that product anymore. But the employees were just going through and checking it off, and I got that done. And of course then I'm kind of going, well, all right.

-What else are they checking off?


-Now let me ask you this in this customer service training. Maya Angelou, the famous author, poet, she says, nothing works unless you do. Business coaching lesson: I would say in business, no checklist or no system works without accountability.

ARTHUR GREENO: Absolutely.

-Business coaching question: How do you on a daily basis maintain the accountability, to make sure that your team is delivering the results that customers are paying for?

-Correct. Basically, the manager that would be in charge. So I actually have a general manager in my store. His role is to make sure that those checklists are being done. So they actually at the end of the shifts, they turn those in. And so he'll go through it, and he'll take a look at it. Now, that doesn't necessarily mean that he will go through and check every refrigerator, or check everything. In fact, for all I know-- I hope it's not the case-- he could literally be just going, all right, it's good, throw it in the trash.


-But the employees need to know, or feel like he's inspecting it. So at some point he needs to-- I've talked to him about it-- at random go through and check them. But if the job's getting done, were good. But it's when the job's not getting done that we start pulling the checklist and saying, what happened.

CLAY CLARK: Now, to make this whole checklist system work, there are two quotes that I try to live by, maybe you have some that you want to share here. I'm going to see if I can successfully go to a new slide here without crashing the mainframe. Let me see if I can do it. And-- there! Hey, all right.

So quote number one, "trust but verify." And Ronald Reagan said that. Do you believe in that?


CLAY CLARK: So I trust you have, I believe that you did in fact clean the bathroom, but I'm going to go verify that. Is that right?


-OK. The other one I hear a lot is inspect what you expect. What does that mean, in your mind?

-Well, there's a quote that I love that says, real performance standards are based on the things that we accept, not the things we expect.

-Mm. So it's what you accept, right?

ARTHUR GREENO: Right. And it goes right along with that.

CLAY CLARK: Not expect.

ARTHUR GREENO: And so you may expect your employee to have picked up the parking lot. But you need to go inspect it occasionally, and make sure he's doing it. It could be that he wasn't trained thoroughly. And this has happened in my venue a lot of times, where the manager will say, go clean the parking lot, and they didn't give him full instructions. And so they think they got it done, and I come through and it's not done.

-I see a lot of owners who own businesses, and at 5 o'clock their whole staff has left, but they're still there by themselves. And I ask them, how does that happen? How are you always by yourself at the end of the day? And they're like, well, you know, Sherry asked to leave early, John asked to leave early, and I accepted it. I said, OK, it's fine. But they expected them to stay late, or to say until they're done, or whatever, stay until the end of the shift, but they accepted it. Business coaching lesson: So it's really again what you accept, and not what you expect.


-So the bathrooms aren't clean. If you accept it, it doesn't really matter.

-And you're setting the standard for them.

CLAY CLARK: Now, Arthur, is there any other business coaching tips that you would like to share during this customer service training? We're going to give the brass tacks now of installing some accountability systems. Is there any other little phrases that you like to kind of swirl in your mind, for accountability, and for daily management that you kind of keep in your brain?

ARTHUR GREENO: No, I think-- no.

CLAY CLARK: These are pretty much it, right here. I mean--

ARTHUR GREENO: They really are.

-OK. So it's not super complicated, but it's something that we have to do. Now, in the book, The Service Profit Chain, it says that organizations that achieve both market and operating focus are nearly unbeatable, meaning companies that are operationally awesome are almost unbeatable. And that's great. But once I have a checklist in place, how do what I make sure that my people are actually using this thing?

Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 2
  • Lesson Nugget: If your employees or people that report to you do not follow through with their checklists, it is your fault.
  • Notable Quotable: "Time is the scarcest resource, and unless it is managed, nothing else can be managed."- Peter Drucker
  • Lesson Nugget: Define expectations of your work results, then track your workforce to make sure you are hitting acceptable numbers.
  • Notable Quotable: "Remember, when you were made a leader you weren't given a crown, you were given responsibility to bring out the best in others. For that, your people need to trust you. And they will, as long as you demonstrate candor, give credit, and stay real."- Winning by Jack Welch



-I mean, you mentioned that some of the items were out of date there on your to-do list. Business coaching tip: You're always refining it. How do you make sure that it's always getting done?

-Well, like I told you. My general manager would sit down and make sure that it's done every night. But on top of that, my general manager also has checklists.

-And does your corporate check on you?

-Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. The corporate office actually has access to all of our computers and all the things going on, so they're constantly looking at us and saying where are they at. Now, they do trust us because of our relationship. And then what the expectations are. But they do define what the expectations are. If I start taking my chicken and cutting extra pieces of-- taking a filet, which we get in raw-- and cutting a nugget off each one. And also, my sizes aren't meeting spec-- they're going to be coming and having a discussion with me about it.

-So they even follow up with you?


-Now, what would you say for business coaching advice to the business owner who says, I have checklists, but I can't get my staff to ever use them. Go for it. What do you say to them?

-It's their job. Period. If you tell them that they're supposed to do and they're not doing it, who's running the store? And unfortunately, I watch that all the time. That they're more interested in being friends with people than being their boss.

-Now, I know in our office-- not these people filming, but other people-- I know in a lot of offices, what you'll run into is that people spend 40%, 50% of their day not working. They're just talking about whatever, doing various other tasks, very little focuses going on. Business coaching question: How do you hold your team accountable to just being efficient, Arthur? What do you do? What kind of things do you have to say to your people if they're goofing around?

-Well, we have tracking forms. And again, systems in place. For a business coaching example, our drive-through. We track our drive-through numbers every day. So I know that today, they ran 124 cars through the drive-through in one hour. And so-- but we also know that some of the-- what the other stores in Tulsa are doing. So we're constantly saying, where are we.

But I have them write it down every day. They go to a piece of paper-- what did we do today. And they write it down. And that's something that-- here's our expected-- top of the sheet, it says, our goal is 140 cars. Today, we hit 124. Well, 140 is a pretty steep goal. So we are going to work through that.

-Now, Drucker-- Peter Drucker is the legendary management expert and the author of-- who once wrote the book called The Effective Executive. He says that time is the scarcest resource. And unless it is managed, nothing can be managed. Essentially, nothing happens if it's not scheduled.

What systems and routines do you have in place to hold your staff accountable-- to achieving things in a timely manner? Such as, changing the lights on the sign, or making sure the chicken's fresh, or stuff like that.

-Well, if we're talking about-- oh, here is a good business coaching example. So we have to cut and squeeze all of our lemons by hand. So somebody at Chick-fil-A, fortunately, spent a whole bunch of time testing everybody. So they actually have expectations that say, it should take you-- the average person should be able do it in 11 minutes. Now, so, we have this form on the wall that says 11 minutes to cut and squeeze these lemons. Well, then it also says who's your best.

And so, we're constantly looking at who's our best and so--

-Who's your best lemon squeezer.

-That's right. And so we'll actually, as soon as-- so what we'll do is-- and we train our people on this. So the very first time they're squeezing lemons, we'll say, this is how much time it should take you. And we give them some extra time. Then after that, then we set a clock to them.

And so we'll set a clock to them and say, OK, do you think you can do this in half that time? And then we work it down to where now my managers have a baseline to say, hey, how come last time when you squeezed lemons you were able to do it in 15 minutes. And now it's taking you 25 minutes. Where's that time going?

-Well, I know on-- one of the businesses I work with is a haircut business. And some people take 50 minutes to cut hair. Some people take 20 minutes to cut hair. But we know an average of how long it should take for the whole experience. So, anything you're doing-- I mean, you're managing that time. You're deciding, hey, this is how long it should take to clean the bathroom. This is how long it should take to squeeze lemons. This is how long you're documenting all that stuff.

Now, legendary former CEO of GE, Jack Welch, wrote in his book Winning-- he says, remember, when you were made a leader, you weren't given a crowned. Er-- given a crown. You were given a responsibility to bring out the best in others. For that, your people need to trust you. Business coaching tip: And they will, as long as you demonstrate candor, give credit, and stay real. And again, as long as you demonstrate candor, give credit, and stay real.

Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 3
  • Notable Quotable: "Leadership is influence. Nothing more. Nothing less."- John C. Maxwell
  • Ask Yourself: Do your "bad" employees not care? Or are they just not in a role that they have the tools to complete?



-Demonstrate candor, what does that mean to be candid, or to be open, I guess? For business coaching purposes, what does that mean?

-Well, so let's use the example of squeezing lemons, OK. If the person is squeezing lemons, and they're not hitting the mark, we need to let them know. If we're dancing around going it's OK, it's OK--

CLAY CLARK: You're good person.

-Yeah. It's not OK. Here's what everybody else is doing. Now, that doesn't mean we need to trash them, and do seagull management, when you go in and you poop on everybody and fly away.


-But you can turn around and--

-Seagull management.



-So at that point, we can be very candid and say, you know what, you did a good job, but you're not quite meeting the mark.


-So let's take a look at what we need to do to get there.

-So what about giving credit, what does that mean in the business?

-Well, again, in the lemon-- if they do a good job, we're going to make sure people know about it. We actually have like private Facebook pages for our people now. And so I will go on there-- like if the drive-thru rocked the house and did some good numbers, I'll say, great job everybody, great job drive-thru, you guys are rock stars-- and list all their names.

-What about staying real, Arthur? I mean, there's bosses that are fake. Hey, Arthur, how are you doing, so good to see you. They don't seem real. How do you keep it real, Arthur, how do you keep it real?

-How do I keep it real? As a young entrepreneur, a lot of people worry too much-- they don't give the credit they should, because they're afraid of people thinking they're not going to be real. But the reality is that you need to do what you know is right, and they'll form their own opinions. And they'll know if you're real or not.

-So if I worked for you, and I consistently get my checklist done with the spirit of excellence on a daily basis, what's going to happen to me?

-Well, you're going to be promoted. You'll probably get a raise to start with, maybe even two of them, until we start looking at you and saying, you know what, we can trust this gentleman. Why don't we go ahead and see what he can do in a leadership capacity. Business coaching definition: You know John Maxwell defines the definition of leadership as purely influence. And it's amazing how you can show up to work on time and influence so many around you.

-What if I work for you, and I consistently do not get mine checklist done and with the spirit of excellence. What happens to me?

-Business coaching truth: Well, if it happens over a long period of time, you'll be promoted as well, but that will be to customer status.

-You promote people to customer status, caw! Now, real quick, how many times do I have to not get my checklist done properly, Arthur, the brass tacks. How many times do I have to do it wrongly, before you start to promote me to customer status, aka encourage me to pursue other job opportunities, aka be fired.

-Well, the first thing is as leaders, we have to make sure that it's not a training issue. Business coaching lesson: If it's a training issue, our job is to make sure you're trained. The second is are you willing to do it. And so if you're not willing to do it, if you don't care, then we don't have a place for you. And so it could be as easy as, you know what, it happened, I get it, let me show you again, you know what, this is not the place for you. Or it could also be that we look at it and say well, maybe this is the wrong spot for you. Because it's very important to put the right people the right places.


-And so we have to have leaders kind of define that. But if you're not doing your job, and there's not a willingness to do your job, it's time to go ahead part ways.

-Do you feel like there's always-- that you always ask the question if someone doesn't do their job right, you always ask, do they not know, or do they not care, right? Thats the question--


-OK, so you're always asking, do you not know or do you not care?


-Now, if I worked for you and I don't know how to get my checklist done with the spirit of excellence, what happens? If I'm like, I just didn't know how to do it, man.

-Yeah, what we would do is we would put you kind of back in training mode, and we'd have somebody train you and make sure you get it done. And even when we train people, it's-- so for a business coaching example, say I was training you on how to put together this folder, OK. So what we do is I would probably create a system on how to train you, then I would have you read the system as I put the folder together, then I would give you the folder and I'd read the system and you would put the folder together, and then I would have you do and I'd observe. And so if at that point you're not getting it, we have to start looking at, does this person have the capacity?

CLAY CLARK: Maybe they don't, right--

-That's exactly right. Business coaching advice: And if they don't, then we have to figure out what to do with them.

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