Align your car, align your business

For the last few weeks, my car had been acting funny.  The tires are in near new condition, yet in the rain it would hydroplane, and even on dry pavement it didn’t seem to hug the road very well.  A friend said that sounded like an alignment problem, so I made an appointment and took it in.

Turns out, 3 of the 4 wheels were well out of whack.  I was given a read out much like the one pictured that showed the before and after condition of my car.  Luckily, they have adopted the red is bad, green is good system for us automotive morons.  I immediately noticed a difference when I drove the car away from the repair shop, and was glad and proud and relieved, all at the same time.

As I told my wife about this experience, she said, “that sounds a lot like what you and Scot are doing, but for businesses.”  Leave it to my wife to point out something obvious that is right in front of my nose.

She was right. Since the end of 2010, Scot Carson of Amusement Advantage and I have been working together to help businesses figure out where they are out of whack, and provide tools, resources and advise about how to “re-align” their business practices.

If you don’t know Scot, he runs the only mystery shopping service that is exclusive to the attractions industry.  He had a number of clients asking about additional insight that could be gained from a report, or from looking at multiple reports, and that’s what I get to do.  I’ll look at an entire season of reports, for example, and pull out the trends in employee behavior and guest experience that business owners can use to improve the way they lead, treat their employees or interact with their guests.  In other words, a business check-up, with re-alignment if needed.

“Working with Matt has given us the ability to provide our clients with a third party comprehensive analysis of their mystery shopping results.  We highlight trends and patterns in terms of positive and negative guest experiences and provide suggestions for actionable improvements and recognition.  It’s a fantastic way to yield an even greater return on our mystery shopping programs!” -Scot Carson

Like Scot said, we do talk about what is good and what is not-so-good in the reports.  People like (and need) to know when they are doing things right, and these reports identify a whole lot of goodness going on.  So there are “green” sections in the reports, and then there are the “red” sections.

Because we are often looking at the reports after the season ends, we are not focused on changing or “fixing” a particular employees’ behavior.  Instead, it is more important for us to identify the trends or conditions that influenced the negative behavior, so we can figure out the long-term solution about how to fix it.

So, if you feel like your car needs to be realigned, take it to a qualified mechanic.  If you need your business realigned, that’s what Scot and I are here for.

If you’ll be at the IAAPA Expo, plan to stop by and see us at booth #3927!

Thanks for reading!