Consistent inconsistency is a tripwire that can be the downfall of a business, particularly at its inception. Like any habit, the earlier inconsistency arises the more ingrained it becomes. The more ingrained it becomes the more it debilitates a business. Inconsistency can even destroy it. Anything that a new business does can’t be done well without consistency. Here’s why consistency is important for your business.
IT PROVIDES PRECISE, MEASURABLE GOALS
Vague goals such as hiring better employees or implementing better team cooperation leave the door wide open for irregularity. They can also ignite confusion throughout the company. Hone generic goals to ones with details and timelines. Determine how much time it will take to go from point A to point B. What steps will achieve this? How will they be implemented? Instead of concentrating on lag measures (goals), focus on lead measures (the steps that will get to that goal).
IT GIVES YOU CREDIBILITY
The first time a customer obtains a product or service from you they may be satisfied and continue to do business with you. However, if the quality of your service yo-yos it’s going to alienate existing customers, and word will spread that you do bad business.
For example, a customer orders his or her favorite food at a restaurant only to discover that it doesn’t taste as good on subsequent visits. They may not come back, and chances are they’ll spread the word to their friends.
Consistency is the primary attribute that has enabled long-established businesses such as Burger King to thrive and sustain millions of customers. It costs far more for a company to try hooking new customers than retaining existing ones. Consistency is the main driver of overall customer experience and loyalty.
IT GIVES EMPLOYEES A SENSE OF SECURITY
Most employees are comforted by consistency. It provides a structure that they can rely on and work within. Consistent practices and procedures make the workplace environment less erratic and more stable. A business that fosters consistency will not only aid employees but generate repeat customers.
IT HELPS YOU PLAN INSTEAD OF REACT
When you’re driven by panic to douse a few “urgent” fires you’re not attending to the overall security of your business, and you’re ricocheting everywhere. According to Jim Sullivan, CEO of Sullivision, a consulting company whose clients include Walt Disney Company and McDonalds, “If you’re reacting you’re not planning. Extraordinary results can only be achieved when you’re clear about what matters most.” For consistency he recommends laying out 65 percent of your day in detail and leaving 35 percent of it to tackle curveballs.
IT’S CRUCIAL TO MARKETING YOUR BUSINESS
Consistency directly impacts the success or failure of a business, particularly a small one that’s trying to make a name for itself. Discipline yourself to devoting 30 minutes a day, every day, to marketing. Used consistently, social media channels such as a business website, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIN will keep information flowing about your business and actively engage potential and current customers .
So will weekly or daily newsletters, provided that you adhere to this schedule so that customers are engaged and aware that your business is thriving and available to them. If you don’t do this, your business is vulnerable to severe financial peaks and valleys.
IT SENDS THE RIGHT MESSAGE TO THE RIGHT AUDIENCE
An effective business communicates focused, consistent messages across all media -- print and digital. Anywhere you tout your business, from social media to broadcasting to logos, you must send the same message to a targeted audience. Inconsistent messages will confuse and possibly estrange current and potential customers. They’ll be unsure of whether you’d intended these messages for them or another audience. Consistency of communication will give you an unmistakable identity.
IT HOLDS YOU AND YOUR STAFF ACCOUNTABLE
Accountability is a lynchpin of a successful business. It forges accord throughout the company. Consistency establishes trust and permits employees to know exactly what to do and when it’s expected to be done. Accountability consistently moves businesses forward.
A consistent business is a successful business. Consistency can make or break everything from your revenues to your client retention to your reputation. As Winston Churchill aptly put it, “You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.”