February '18

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190 • RV PRO • February 2018 rv-pro.com B U S I N E S S Checking for Success Checklists create consistency and disciplined execution over the long haul. By Chuck Marzahn Chuck Marzahn is a partner with Marzahn & King Consulting, a well-known consulting and training firm specializing in the RV industry based in Virginia Beach, Va. He can be reached for comment and questions at Chuck@ MarzahnAndKing.com. T his column has been focused on the ideas that always work. Axioms. Concrete con- cepts that you needn't revisit to see if they are still true. You might call them "nuggets" or "silver bullets." I call them axioms. One of the threads that has run through the lives of many successful leaders and professionals is this: They always have a plan. That's on the strategic side, and we've talked about that in a prior column. Now let's get more tactical. Maybe a little thought should be given to context first. I'm a big believer in the value of a plan. It's not something I recently picked up. There may have been a couple times in my life where there wasn't a plan in the forefront of my thoughts. If so, those would only have been the darkest times in my life when I was fully overwhelmed by some circumstance from which I hadn't yet seen the way to overcome. Time Management: What It Is & Isn't Clearly the first formal planning took the form of "time management" as a dealership department head in the mid-'80s. That plan- ning allowed me to sally bravely forth with a prioritized daily action plan. Those were some of the most productive times of my entire life. But this month's column isn't about time management, per se. It isn't the same thing as a simple checklist. When I started in the RV industry, Gorman Planning used to do the updates to the monthly calendar published in RV Executive magazine. It was a good resource for the owner/ general manager (O/GM) to see tasks that needed to be done. What might have been missed is that the updates came from a checklist we used at Gorman. If you referred to that calendar "back in the day" then you've already been using a checklist. With the ever-increasing pace of business and the flow of information, time management in the traditional fashion is less effective. Busi- ness today presses hard on your focus and time. Checklists provide discipline and using them promotes diligence.

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