It’s a new year, so let’s all make a pledge together! Come on now, raise your right hand and repeat after me.

“I pledge to make 2016 the best year ever for my business. I will do this by setting a good example for the rest of my team. I will think before reprimanding my employees. I will hold my tongue when an unhappy customer upsets me. I will come to work every day with an optimistic attitude.

“I will not let my competition eat my lunch. I will outwork, outsell and consistently deliver better customer service than competitors. Our trucks will be cleaner, our crews better trained and our reputation will be tops. I pledge to do the right thing for my customers and employees.

“I pledge to take my company to the next level by working smart not hard, or smart and hard, or whatever it takes, so help me God. This will not be an easy task, but I will do it.

“I will not blame my failures on low ballers, no-name operations, national companies or the two-guys-and-a-truck operation just around the block. My failures will fall where they belong – squarely on my shoulders.

“I will not blame my company’s mistakes on poor-performing employees. Instead, when I determine that an employee is not cutting it (or worse), I will look in the mirror and say out loud and with feeling: ‘You idiot! Do a better hiring job next time!’

“I pledge to do whatever it takes to improve my company while also maintaining a healthy balance with my personal life. I will make time for my friends, family and, especially, my spouse. Yes, there will be times I will have to work late or on the weekend, but my family will also know I will always make time for them. We will take vacations together, and I will also make time to pursue my hobbies and to enjoy the fruits of my labor before I am too old, cranky and lonely to do so.

“I pledge to wring as much positive and worthwhile activity out of each workday as possible. I will not waste time talking about things like ‘Dancing with the Stars,’ the past weekend’s football games or the world’s problems. Instead, I will review work schedules, return calls to clients and do all the other tasks that add to my company’s success. I realize a lot of people depend upon my company’s success.

“I pledge not to let stress impair my ability to run my company or harm my health. I will not make excuses, such as, ‘I don’t have time to eat healthy.’ I will do my best to make decisions to remain healthy both mentally and physically because I will be no good to my company or family if I am sick, run down and burnt out.

“I pledge all of this and whatever else it takes to make all this stuff happen.”

Now, let’s put our hands down; we’re starting to look ridiculous.

Let me know what you are doing to make 2016 the best year ever in your business… and your life. Email me at steve@rakconsultingllc.com.