Is Pet Sitting Software Worth the Business Expense

Is Pet Sitting Software Worth the Business Expense

Today’s Business Growth Video asks if pet sitting software is a necessary business expense.

The answer to this question is a resounding yes. This is something that I wish I had invested in so much sooner in my business.

The number one reason is that I used to have the night sweats and spheres of me missing a pet sitting visit. When you use a pet sitting software, that worry goes away because everything is tracked online through the software.

Is Pet Sitting Software Worth the Business Expense


All of your clients’ pet care plans are nice and organized inside the software, and you can keep client credit cards on file and then charge them before the service begins. It also streamlines and organizes everything. So no more chasing payments. It is just an absolute must and something like I said, I wish I had done sooner.

I recommend Time To Pet software. 99% of my students use it and love it. I have a coupon code that I will link to below this video. It will help with the starting expense.

Other options are Precise Petcare, Leashtime, PetSitClick, Scout, and Power PetSitter. There are lots of options out there. So check those out as well. If you were on a super tight budget, look into something called PocketSuite, it’s about $9 a month, and it’s a great starter software. It’s not pet sitting specific, but it’s a great starter software for scheduling and accepting client payments. So if you’re on a tight budget, start there, and then you can always upgrade to a more expensive pet sitting software in the future.

Coupon code: timetopet.com/r/petnannycoach

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The Top 15 Things to Automate in Your Pet Sitting Business

The Top 15 Things to Automate in Your Pet Sitting Business

Today, we’re talking about the top 15 things you should automate in your pet sitting business. When I talk about automation, I mean that you take the manual processes out of your business by leveraging technology.

Technology is designed to save you time and make you money. So, I teach how to use this to free up your time to focus on revenue-generating activities. Here are the top 15 things that you can start with.

1. Customer Scheduling.

There are a million out there, but you’re automating your customer scheduling and reminder processes using software like Time to Pet, Power Pet Sitter, Precise Petcare, Leashtime, Bluewave. If you’re new, you can also check out software called PocketSuite. I think it’s less than ten bucks a month, but worth it, absolutely worth it.

2. Backing up your files.

Do you ever think, “Hmm, I want to back up my files today.” No, it is not a top priority, but coming from someone that lost all their files once, this is an absolute must. You can use a cloud-based backup like Dropbox, where you can establish a daily or weekly time for a background backup to happen.

3. New-customer onboarding.

You can use an email autoresponder, something like MailChimp or ActiveCampaign, to run your clients through a new-customer onboarding sequence. They complete their new client forms, sign their contracts, and get introduced to their new pet sitter. You start it, and then it just runs through the whole process. I give this to my students who are in my Multiply Mastermind program.

The Top 15 Things to Automate in Your Pet Sitting Business

4. Customer follow-ups and surveys.

Again, using your autoresponder or your pet-sitting software, you schedule these follow-ups and survey requests with your customers. So important. You want to make sure that your customers are happy with your pet sitting business, but also, when they are happy, that’s a testimonial that you can showcase for your business.

5. Lead capture and follow-up.

Somebody comes to your website, and they see your lead magnet. “Ooh, this is a great high-value coupon. I’m going to give my first name and email address to get this.” Then, boom, the campaign automatically starts to your email autoresponder.

They get a series of emails to convert them into a paying customer by the end of the sequence. You are not having to manually go in, “Oh, someone filled out a form. I better send them all these emails, one, by one, by one.” No, it just happened in the background.

6. Billing and failed payments.

Use your scheduling software to keep your client’s credit card information on file and process the payment before your client’s service begins. So, instead of you providing service… so the need is already met… printing out an invoice, leaving it on the counter, hoping and praying that they mail it in.

Or they leave it on the counter, then you put it in your pocket, and you lose it, or your sitter, one of your sitters has it and doesn’t mail it to you. The list goes on about how many things can go wrong when you do this manually. If you get this all set up through your pet sitting business software, they pay ahead of time, and it’s super-easy. Then also, if their card is declined or needs to be updated, the system automatically sends them an email. You do not have to do it.

7. Referral and testimonial request.

Using an autoresponder again, like MailChimp or ActiveCampaign, you can run referral-request promotions and ask for testimonials and reviews.

8. Receipts.

We are in business. You need to have a receipt for anything that we spend on our business. Audited, need the receipts. You can use an app like Shoeboxed to scan, organize, and store your business receipts.

9. Website traffic tracking.

Google Analytics allows you to set up a simple report to have emailed to you once a week to look at it quickly to see what your traffic was, how many visitors were there, where they are located, and so on. So you don’t have to think, “Oh, I need to go into Google Analytics.” Because everybody wants to do that. These reports are automatically emailed to you.

10. Social media posts and promotions.

You can use software like SmarterQueue, Hootsuite, or MeetEdgar, which allows social media posts to be written in batches, and then dispersed throughout the week or month using a scheduler. So, you load the content up ahead of time. You decide when you want it sent out to your social media channels, and you don’t have to think about it.

11. Greeting card mailing.

Integrate your email autoresponder with a company like Rocket Notes, or send out cards to automate new-customer welcome greeting cards or thank-you cards. So, at Pet Nanny, when somebody signs up as a new client, and I run them through that new-customer onboarding campaign, it sends a notification to Rocket Notes, which then mails them a greeting card that they get in the mail. It’s pretty cool.

12. Collecting job applications.

Add an online form like Google Forms or Jotforms to your website to collect sitter applications and automatically follow up with them. Someone says, “Oh, I would like to work with Pet Nanny.” They fill out the application. They then get dropped into an autoresponder email sequence, where they are getting the appropriate emails and an invitation to schedule an interview. You do not manually have to do it.

13. Sitter hiring.

Run your sitters through an automated assessment campaign to evaluate how they communicate and follow directions. One of the best things I’ve ever set up in my business, also something that I give to my Multiply Mastermind students.

You want to create these assessment tasks for sitter prospects to run through so that you can be assured that they’re going to be a good person before you hire them. It can be automated, and you don’t have to do it step by step—such an integral part of my business.

14. Sitter onboarding.

Run your sitters through an automated onboarding campaign, which takes them through all the steps they need to complete before they are sent out in the field to work with your customers. Something else I give to my Multiply Mastermind students, I provide the link, and it goes right into their active campaign.

They customize it for themselves. They are onboarding these sitters so that they do not have to do it step by step with every sitter, and it becomes redundant and boring. You can automate so many steps of that process.

15. Contract signing.

Use software like DocuSign or SignNow to have your clients and sitters sign their contracts. Versus a “Hi, client, high new client. Here’s the service agreement.” Having to sign it, come home, put it in a file or picture it, scan it, take a picture of it, and upload it to your Dropbox or Google Drive. You can automate that whole process using one of these contract-signing software.

 

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Work ON Your Dog Walking Business, Just Not IN it

Work ON Your Dog Walking Business, Just Not IN it

If you’ve been following me, you’ve probably heard me say a gazillion times, “Stop working in your business and start working on your business.” This was the major shift that completely changed the trajectory of my career and my life with my dog walking business, and where I learned this was the E-Myth Revisited.

It was the first business book I read that had a major impact on my life. It’s just like bells went off in my head, ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, “I am doing this business thing all wrong.”

So what the E-Myth says is that entrepreneurs are people that understand that going into business is something that you do. You’re building a business that runs without you having to do the work to create the revenue and the income.

The problem is that most small business owners are technicians. They’re like myself and most of the students that I work with. We go into the pet industry because we love and adore animals and want to provide amazing pet care. But then we decide that we want to grow the business, and we don’t know how to do that because we are technicians. We’re not entrepreneurs innately, as the word would define.

So that is the big shift. You have to start thinking differently about your business. If you had a hundred different locations, you would not be able to service a hundred different locations, be the manager, be the pet sitter.

Work ON Your Dog Walking Business, Just Not IN it

 

You would have to think about your dog walking business differently in terms of creating systems and processes that are easily replicable between all locations and that it is running without you being the person that is doing all of the marketing. You’re not the person that’s doing all of the admin. You’re not the person that’s doing the pet sitting. You’re not the person doing the database, the hiring, and all of the stuff that goes into it.

Start thinking of ways to remove yourself as the bottleneck.

You have to start thinking about yourself from a place of removing yourself as that bottleneck in your dog walking business so that you can create these processes so that you’re able to grow your team and you’re able to service more customers and, therefore, make more money.

You have to get out of the technician mindset and move yourself to that entrepreneurial mindset of working on your business and not in your business. This creates freedom in your life, which makes money in your business. It’s such an important shift if you want to grow a lucrative dog walking business.

 

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The Power of Momentum

Today our topic is the power of momentum. I have been teaching pet sitting business owners how to create lucrative pet sitting careers for many years now. And the one differentiator that I see between those who can produce the results they want and those who aren’t is the ability to generate momentum for themselves.

These people figure out how to get motivated, stay motivated, persevere, and get things done even when they don’t want to. I’m here to tell you that your brain is not wired to want to get things done. Our brains are wired to keep us nice and warm and cozy in our houses to watch Netflix, eat, and search out comfort.

The Power of Momentum

 

When you start doing something new and start building your pet sitting businesses and taking action, your brain’s like, whoa, hold the phone. Hold on. Don’t do this. Go back to what you were doing before because that’s safe. The people who keep moving forward and understand that this is resistance they have to move through, and they find ways to generate that motivation. These are the people who get results in their business.

In my Multiply Mastermind program, we have a book club. This month our book was The 5 Second Rule Mel Robbins. In this book, she teaches a brain hack that you can do when you start feeling this resistance come into play.

The 5 Second Rule

She says when you start hearing that negative self-talk, and it’s saying, hey, don’t do the business building work today. Hey, don’t work out today. Hey, don’t eat that healthy food; eat something much yummier. You can count down five, four, three, two, one, go, and you have to move your body.

This is a simple brain hack that you can implement in your life to start moving through that resistance and generating that momentum so that you can create the results in your business that you want.

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Create a Weekly Scorecard for Your Pet Sitting Business

Create a Weekly Scorecard for Your Pet Sitting Business

In my Multiply Mastermind Program, we have a monthly book club. We read a fabulous one this past summer, and it was called Traction by Gino Wickman. I love this book so much because he dials down how to get a business where you are not the person that’s doing the client work. How do you do that in your pet sitting business?

Create Systems and Processes

The system runs the business, and the person runs the system. If you’ve heard me say it once, you’ve heard me say it a million times. This is how you create a turnkey system for your business without you actually being the one doing the client work.

Create a Weekly Scorecard for Your Pet Sitting Business

In this book, one of the strategies that he suggested to create is a weekly scorecard for your business. This puts your data into a quick and easy snapshot that you can look at every week.

 Create a Weekly Scorecard for Your Pet Sitting Business


Every Monday, my manager fills out the scorecard from the week prior. She sends me an email. I can open the email first thing Monday morning and see exactly what happened the week before. It immediately put this into action with my pet sitting business.

I will go through and tell you what we are tracking in the pet sitting business at Pet Nanny. I absolutely love this tool.

First, we’re doing weekly revenue, then payroll, then how many client prospect phone calls we had. How many new clients have we enrolled. How many surveys were submitted. How many business review requests were made. How many testimonials have we received.

How many customer problems we had. How many refund requests did we have, or how many refunds were given.

Then we move on to the sitters. I want to know the total number of sitter applications, and then I dial down that number even deeper into how many applications are in the service area. We could receive many applications, but if they’re not in my actual service area, they’re useless.

Then I want to know how many interviews were scheduled. How many were completed. Then I want to know the total number of pet sitters currently on our roster and how many are still needed.

Then I dial that number down even deeper to the specific service areas where we need sitters. How many sitters do we need in Malvern? How many do we need in Wayne? How many do we need in Berwyn? So on and so forth.

That way, we’re clear on what we need to be working towards.

Use the Scorecard Yourself if You Don’t Have a Manager

This is something super simple that you should start right away for your business. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have a manager yet. You can be filling this out. Then when you do hire your first manager, this will be something you will delegate to them.

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3 Steps to 5-Figure Months in Your Pet Sitting Business

3 Steps to 5-Figure Months in Your Pet Sitting Business

Today we’re talking about three simple steps for you to create consistent five figure months in your pet sitting business.

Step 1: Create a sales system that attracts new clients to your business.

Create a sales system that attracts new clients to your business while incentivizing your current customers to book from you more frequently.

Step 2: Systematize every single thing in your business.

It’s taking everything out of your head. It is documenting it onto an online business hub into some manual to easily delegate it to your support team.

Step 3: Have a Support Team

You will make a substantial income in your pet sitting business by leveraging yourself through a team of heart-centered pet care professionals that will take amazing care of your client’s pets. Then eventually, your support team will get even larger with a manager, a virtual assistant, and such.

Those are the three steps. You need to be acquiring new customers. You need to be systematizing every last thing in your business so one, you’re creating something of value that you’ll be able to sell down the road, and two, it makes it easy to run. It establishes that turnkey business where you’re not the person that’s having to do everything.

Lastly, you’re delegating to other people to do the work of running your pet sitting business.

QUOTE - 3 Steps to 5-Figure Months in Your Pet Sitting Business

 

As the business owner, you are not supposed to do the client work.

You are supposed to be the visionary. You’re supposed to be the person behind the scenes, and you delegate the client work to your team. It’s that simple.

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30 Ways to Get More Pet Sitting Business

30 Ways to Get More Pet Sitting Business

Most business owners think they shouldn’t market if their pet sitting business is flush with clients. This is incorrect thinking! To always have clients you must always be marketing. You should not count on the fact that customers are yours forever once they sign up with your service. You must implement a variety of marketing strategies to create a consistent pipeline of new business.

Here are 30 ways a professional pet sitter can get more pet sitting business.

1. You need to build a client-attractive website.

I talk way too often to pet sitters that don’t have a website. Guess what? Everybody is online. Everybody’s on their phones. Everybody’s on their computers. Everybody is Googling how to find out how to do things or find services they want to use. You need a website so that people can find you. And then, on top of that, you want to make it client-attractive so that when people hit your website, they immediately have the know, like, and trust factor. You have all of the important aspects to your website so that people are going to convert into paying customers. I go in-depth in this in my Launch and Grow program. It is so, so, so, so important.

2. On that website, you need to add a lead magnet.

What’s a lead magnet? It is something of value that you are giving to your website visitors in exchange for their first name and email address. The idea here is that you want to follow up with these people, and you want to follow up with those who hit your website but don’t buy or don’t become customers. And that’s how you do it. So currently, my lead magnet on my website is an information packet coupled with a high-value coupon.

3. Create a sales funnel with a time-sensitive offer to create urgency.

When someone visits my website they say, oh, this looks pretty good. I will give them my first name and email address. We provide them with an information packet that they can download. Then they get the $25 off coupon. Then they are dropped into a sales funnel where they’re going to get consecutive emails from me.

I’m going to speak to different pain points and the benefits of using my service. And in the end, I’m going to say, “all right, now’s the time. If you want to cash in on that coupon, do it before the deadline ends.” Time-sensitive offers create an urgency that compels people to take action and buy and use their coupons.

4. Join a networking group.

One of the easiest ways to build your client list when starting your business is to join a networking group. You could try LeTip, and I loved BNI, Business Network International.

The deal is, if you are going to join one of these groups, you need to commit to it. You need to show up to every meeting, and you need to be referring other people in that group. Another tip I have for you, try to find an established group. A lot of BNI chapters are new, and you don’t want that. You want to a chapter that’s been around for a while. You want people in that group who know what they’re doing and are committed to the networking process—one of the easiest ways to get clients.

5. Actively participate in local Facebook groups.

This is a free method. Join all the local Facebook groups, and they don’t even have to be pet-related. It could be moms, and it could be recipes, and it could be restaurants. And they can be pet-related.

People are always asking about pet sitting services and dog walking services in those groups. If you spend 20 minutes a day to show up in these groups and keep an eye out, you can also add value by posting relevant articles about the importance or benefits of using pet sitting businesses. It’s just such an easy way to connect with members of your community and to get clients.

6. You want to blog and guest blog.

Blogging is going to position you as an expert in the industry. And here’s a little known fact: People like doing business with experts and not novices. So that’s the number one thing a blog is going to do for you. It’s going to position you as an expert in your industry.

The second thing it’s going to do is create relevant content for your pet sitting prospects.

The third thing it’s going to do is create search engine optimization opportunities for your client-attractive website. Because you’re going to be using keywords that your pet sitting business prospects are going to use – that’s what they’re typing into Google search to find you.

Then there’s guest blogging. You submit your articles to other blogs, which then back-links them to your website. This gives your client-attractive website credibility. It’s going to increase that search engine optimization, where people will be able to find you. So get into the habit. Like networking, you have to commit to the process, and you need to be doing it every week, or it’s not worth doing.

7. SEO your website.

A blog is a way to SEO your website, but there’s also many other ways to SEO your website. SEO stands for search engine optimization. We want Google to be able to find your website and index it so that people looking for your service will be able to find you. SEO will increase how high you’re going to show up in those search results. So you want to be using keywords, and you want to add meta descriptions to your images. This is an easy way to get clients because now they’re going to be able to find you. You can find out more here.

8. Showcase your testimonials.

30 Ways to Get More Pet Sitting Business

 

So when you get positive feedback, or you get a review from a client, showcase it. Include it in emails. Make sure you have a page on your website that has all of your testimonials on there. Make sure that you’re putting it out on social media. Let people see the social proof and testimonials.

9. You can run contests.

Contests are fun and an inexpensive way to build buzz for your business. Everyone loves free stuff, and it’s a very easy way to build your email list. So get creative and have fun with this.

10. Build strategic alliances.

Strategic alliances are business owners that target the same target market as you, pet owners, but they don’t provide the same service. We’re not talking about pet sitters or dog walkers, but about vets, pet stores, pet groomers, pet photographers, and pet massage masseuses. That’s who you want to build these relationships with, where basically, you are promoting your services to each other’s client lists. It’s a win-win.

11. Create referral partnerships.

This is any business that is going to refer business to you. It doesn’t have to be pet-related. I partner with my friend who owns a carpet cleaning business. We’re always running promotions back and forth to each other’s lists. My neighbor Claire owns HomeCooked and always puts out my business cards. When I’m hiring, she always puts out my hiring postcards. I also let my clients know about her amazing business. So developing these referral partnerships and making sure that you include them in your marketing plan is an easy way to get clients.

12. Run online paid advertising.

Google AdWords is one of the best things I’ve ever done for my business, honestly. I am always running Google AdWords campaigns. The money that I spend for those advertising campaigns pays for itself, When you consider my customers’ lifetime value, it comes back to me a hundredfold.

So don’t be scared. I would look into delegating this to someone who knows what they’re doing and can set it up for you. You can find people on Upwork or Fiverr, and you can also run Facebook ad campaigns or Instagram campaigns or run YouTube ads. There are all different types of marketing strategies.

Don’t be afraid of paid online advertising because it works. I love seeing the ads. When I’m on social media, I’m like, oh, who’s advertising to me? I find it so fascinating. And guess what? I’m always buying stuff, especially when I’m on Instagram.

13. Create a referral program.

You want to turn the people that use your service into a non-paid sales force. So incentivize the clients that love you to refer you to the people they are friends with.

Then you have to educate these people about how your referral program works. You can’t just make it, put it out into the universe, and be like, okay, done. No, you need to communicate with your referral partners at least on a monthly or bimonthly basis.

This is the best way to do it: Hey, just a reminder, we love and appreciate referrals. And when you refer a client to me, they get $25 off, and so do you. And you’re just constantly reminding them of your referral program.

14. Run a direct mail campaign.

People forget about direct mail. People read and love snail mail. Emails a lot of times get deleted nowadays. In my Multiply Mastermind training program, one of my students’ strategies is called the Five House Marketing Rule. That’s another video, and you can click here to check that out.

15. Write a warm letter.

This would be a specific direct mail campaign. So a warm letter is a letter that you create and send out to everybody on your contact list. This is clients, past clients, friends, family, anyone that’s on there. Anyone that knows, likes, and trusts you is going to get a warm letter. The warm letter is simply updating them about your business.

Let them know that you love and appreciate referrals. If there’s anything that you can do in return for them, just let you know—such an easy, simple strategy to get clients.

16. Run promotions to prospects that never signed up for service.

So you have your client-attractive website. People come; they give you their first name and email address. They get dropped into that sales funnel, but they don’t end up converting into a paying client.

Don’t forget about these people. You can continue to market to them and run promotions. You can do 40% off if you book by the end of the week, so on and so forth. Get creative.

17. Donate your pet sitting services to charity.

I donate high-value gift certificates to so many animal-centered charities in my area and all types of shelters. So I usually do $250, and it’s such a great way to get new clients and get your name out in the community.

18. Use car magnets to advertise your business.

I have never done this, guys, but so many of my students do it and swear by it. And guess what? I always read car magnets. So I’m sure it is a great strategy. You can get them inexpensive nowadays. And you want to have your phone number nice and clear with a call to action.

19. Use your email signature.

This is valuable real estate that people forget about. Every email that you send out, you could have a call to action in your email signature. It could be a booking service. It could be to leave a review. It could be to leave a Yelp review. I mean, there are a million things that you can do with your email signature. Every time you’re sending that out, people will see it, and it’s a way to get clients and get them to take action.

20. Host live events.

Hosting a community event is a sure-fire way to build trust with your community members and showcase your services. It’s also a way to get free local press coverage. So a common one that many of my students do is have pet Halloween costume contest live events, where everyone in the community brings their pets. Such a great way to meet people in your community. And then you want to let the local press know about it to run stories about it.

21. Send out a press release to your local media.

Again, suppose you’re hosting a live event or hosting a contest, or something’s changing in your business, or something big happens in the pet sitting industry. In that case, local media is always looking for stories, and they want your press release. So don’t forget about that. That’s old-school marketing. But guess what, it works.

22. Hang flyers in local establishments.

Old school, but it works. I was in the bagel shop the other day, and there was a bulletin board. I just sat there, and I read through every single one. I was in the G Lodge, a restaurant around the corner from me, the other day. Again, bulletin board. Waiting for my table, I read every single thing on the bulletin board. It’s a great way to find sitters and to get clients.

23. Used social media.

People are on social media, guys, TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube. Send out relevant articles about pet care. You can post memes, and you can do videos, and you can do word puzzles. I mean, there are a million different things that you can do on social media to attract clients to your pet sitting business. Take advantage of these channels because they’re free.

24. List your business on business directories.

Getting your business listed on as many online directories as possible is an excellent strategy for boosting your company’s visibility, and this adds to that credibility factor of your website.

In my Launching Growth program, I give my students, I think it’s about 78 different websites that they can go to and get their business listed, which gives clout to your website, which increases your rankings. It’s an easy way for your clients to be able to find you.

25. Claim and optimize your Google My Business page.

Google My Business is a free marketing tool available to you, and you should have it optimized. People are online Google looking for pet sitting business services. If you have your Google My Business optimized and up to date, it’s such an easy way to get clients.

26. Contact pet friendly apartment complexes.

So you want to reach out to the managers of these apartment complexes. Why am I having a hard time saying that? Let them know about your business, and ask if you could be included in the welcome packages they give out to new renters or new buyers.

27. Partner with a shelter, and all offer a discount for newly adopted pets.

Somebody goes and adopts a new pet, and the shelter says, hey, if you ever need a pet sitter, Pet Nanny-Pet Sitters of The Main Line is the premier service in this area. And then you can give them a coupon as well, and they’ll take action.

28. Market to neighbors of your existing clients.

This goes back to that five-house marketing campaign that I told you about earlier. If you get a client in a neighborhood, you want this entire neighborhood to know about your pet sitting business. It’s an easy way to get clients because if they know that their neighbor trusts you with their pets, they are more likely to trust you. It’s also much more convenient, with a lot less drive time between clients. So you should always be focusing on the immediate neighbors of your clients.

29. Target new homeowners.

This information is public. You can easily get the information for new homeowners in your area, and you could do direct mail campaigns to them. There’s also a service called Welcome Wagon that you could look into.

30. Oh, the last one. So run a reengagement campaign to inactive clients.

If we have not heard from a client in over a year, we run what we call a reengagement campaign, where we send them an email with a high-value offer for them to book service within, say, 14 days.

Then you’re going to continue to stay in touch with them and incentivize them to book service. Don’t forget about the people that have already raised their hands and said, yes, I want to hire your pet sitting service. Get in touch with them, and give them an offer. Get them back and onto your active list.

So there we have it. Thirty ways a professional pet sitter can get more pet sitting business, or for short, 30 ways to get clients. I hope you guys found this helpful.

Howdy, Pet Lover! Are you struggling with attracting new clients to your pet sitting business? Would you like to have a consistent pipeline of new clients coming to your business? Well, wait no longer, my friend. Grab my FREE report, 125 Ways To Get More Pet Sitting Clients. This resource is 100% FREE and is my gift to you. Enjoy!
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Create Systems from Your Mistakes

Create Systems from Your Mistakes

One of my dear students had a horrible thing happen to her this week. She was house-sitting for a current client that had an aggressive dog. She knew the dog was aggressive, but she had been house-sitting for the dog for two-plus years.

The dog loved her. She got a little too comfortable. She was playing with the dog and hugging the dog, and rolling around with the dog. Out of nowhere, this dog bit her horribly. I saw the picture, I about died. I immediately called her to make sure she was okay, and we had a discussion.

She was like, “This was my fault. I let down my guard. I knew this dog had aggressive tendencies. However, I just got too comfortable.”

Use the incident as a learning lesson.

My suggestion was to, one, really help yourself emotionally, obviously, to get over the pain of the incident. But then to use it as a learning lesson for herself and her team and create a system through mistakes and accidents. So what do I mean by this? When something terrible happens in your business, it’s awful. It feels like a punch in the gut, but you need to get into the practice of creating a system from what you learned from the incident.

Create a system from what you learned. Have a meeting with your team and present the protocol.

In this case, I would have a meeting with my team. I would explain in detail what happened. I would show them the picture of my injury, and I would say, “Okay, here is the protocol. Here is a reminder that this is how we deal with dogs that we have that are aggressive.”

Now, in my case with my business, I would no longer service the dog. Okay? To me, it’s too much of a liability with my pet sitters to have them in a home with a dog that could hurt them. That might be something that you might change.

You might have a new policy in place where you’re going to say, “Okay, no aggressive dogs whatsoever are going to be on our client roster.”

In this case, I know this pet sitter well, and this business owner, and I know she’s probably not going to give up this dog, so she will likely have the policy where she’s going to be the one that’s going to take care of it. But then she’s going to know our boundaries, and she’s going to be reminded, “Okay, this is what you do when you go into a client’s home with a dog that has aggressive tendencies.”

Turn the things that happen in your business into systems.

Create Systems from Your Mistakes


It’s taking any simple thing that happens in your business and turning it into a system, turning it into a policy, turning it into a procedure to make your business better, to make your team better. Having regular team meetings to discuss the mistakes or the accidents and the new streamlined system in place is imperative for you to grow your business. I do this in my life in general, not even in my business.

When something happens, what’s the system?

How can I make this reasonable moving forward, too, so it doesn’t happen again? That is my advice for you today, guys. Create a system policy or procedure out of a mistake or an accident, and your business is going to be better off.

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