As a service business leader, you’re only as good as the training you receive. In this article, I’m going to share a couple of important lessons to help improve your business.
Most people who own service businesses aren’t the leaders that they need to be.
But this doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t be considered leaders.
It just means that they’ve hit a ceiling.
Every single leader out there has influences that shape their leadership style. And those influences extend far beyond the courses anyone takes.
In fact, your mentors, your personal experiences, and even your own parents all have an impact on how you lead.
Your abilities as a leader only extend as far as the influence of those who train you. So, to be the best leader that you can be, you’ve got to get the best training around.
At no point has that been more obvious to me than on a recent trip I took with my son.
Leadership is a Life or Death Situation
A little while ago, I took my son to a tactical shooting experience.
And let me tell you that the trainers there treat this training like it’s a life or death situation. Even at the start, when you’re basically playing a video game, they’re treating it like real-life stuff.
This guy was screaming at us to follow his instructions. My heart raced through all of this and we haven’t even gotten to the real deal yet. I loved watching that guy and learning from him because it was obvious that he knew what he was doing.
So, he’s teaching us how to clear a house in a tactical shooting situation. I go right, my son goes left, and everything else, right. And that’s when he gives me the first real bit of wisdom that I know I wouldn’t get from anyone else:
The difference between someone who defends themselves and gets out and someone who doesn’t is the person who yells, “drop the gun”.
It’s the person who treats the situation like the life and death scenario that it is.
Eventually, we go into what they call the shoot house. This is a real-life house where you put all of the stuff you learned in the game into practice.
And again, our trainer’s doing this awesome job of teaching us why we don’t do certain things. Like my instinct was to hug the wall when moving around the house. But the trainer taught me that you need distance when you’re clearing the house. If you don’t have that distance, you’re going to get pinned down.
It was during all of this that I really started to think.
I thought that we, as service business owners, need to treat what we do in the same way as this trainer. We need to treat our work like it’s a life or death situation.
After all, it pretty much is, right? If you don’t get this right, your service business will die.
And that got me thinking about leadership. If I’m in a life or death situation, I’d want a guy like my trainer on this tactical shooting day by my side. I want someone who knows what they’re doing and can train me to be better at it.
The simple fact is that you’ve got to listen to the best to become the best.
But that’s not all that I learned. Here are four more big lessons I learned from my tactical shooting adventure.
Lesson #1 – Don’t Go into a Life or Death Situation Armed With a Water Pistol
Where did you get your training?
That’s the exact question I ask to almost every service business leader that I talk to.
And I’m always shocked at the number of people who tell me that they’ve had no training.
That’s crazy to me, because it’s like taking a water pistol to a gunfight. You’re going to lose because you don’t even have the tools to get the job done.
So the first lesson here is that you need training if you’re going to get good at anything.
Nobody just naturally becomes the best leader in the world. They learn and learn so that they can adapt to anything that comes at them.
Lesson #2 – You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know (Until an Expert Tells You)
Before being informed by my trainer, I had no idea that hugging the wall was such a bad idea in a tactical shooting situation. My instincts told me that was the best thing to do.
I didn’t know what I didn’t know!
The same goes for you as a service business owner. There’s a lot of stuff that you’re doing right now that’s based on gut instinct alone. And it’s pretty damn likely that you’ve gotten a few things wrong just because you don’t even know that there’s a right way to do it.
Lesson #3 – Owning a Business Doesn’t Make You a Leader
Owning a gun does not make you an expert tactical shooter.
Believe me, I learned that pretty damn fast.
So… Why do you think that owning a service business makes you a leader?
It makes you just somebody who owns a business.
That doesn’t mean that you know how to grow that business or lead your people. Being the owner means absolutely nothing, unless you’ve got the training to back up what you’re doing.
Lesson #4 – You’ve Got to Commit to Win
You’re either committed or you’re not.
You can have the best trainer in the world and get nothing from the because you’re not in it to learn.
If you want to win, you’ve got to commit. The best trainers out there won’t give you their time if you’re not going to give them 100% of your effort.
Become a Better Leader
Before I went on this tactical shooting course, I was just a guy with a gun. I wasn’t tactical. All I could do was point, shoot, and hope for the best.
And you’re in the same boat as I was at that time.
Right now, you’re just somebody who has a service business. Maybe you’re not seeing the results you wanted to see, and you’re still trying to figure out why.
Perhaps you’re not even a leader yet. You might just be the guy with the gun who isn’t tactical with what they’re doing.
If that’s the case, you need to work with the best so that you can become the leader that you need to be.
And this is where we come in.