I can’t stress strongly enough how important it is to have a driving, obsessive fixation on your business, and a compulsion to see everything done in the right way every single time. Repairing what mistakes are made along the way can’t be an optional thing; it has to be an absolute, unquestioned necessity that would literally cause you to lose sleep were it not taken care of immediately and completely.
Obsession is the fixation on one idea, subject, or concept.Â It allows virtually no other thoughts and becomes an all-consuming, all-important idea in the mind.Â It would not be an exaggeration to say that in order to prevent and repair all broken windows, you must be – not should be, not may be, but must be – obsessed with your business.
You have to feel personally affronted if something goes wrong with your business.Â And that “something” can be anything. The idea that a trash can hasn’t been emptied, that a counter hasn’t been cleaned, needs to be a personal insult, an abomination.Â You have to feel physically ill if you find a problem in your business, no matter how small and (here’s a word I use with great caution) insignificant it might seem.
Nothing is small, and absolutely nothing is insignificant.
It’s not enough to be concerned about your business; it’s not enough to be interested in its success.Â You have to be obsessed, or you are inviting disaster.Â If you’re not lying in bed at night trying to think of ways to improve business, to serve your customers better, and to fix the broken windows you have or will have soon, you are not doing your job properly.Â And that fervor must be communicated to every single employee you have. It’s not enough for you to be obsessed – everyone who works for the company be equally single-minded.
The proceeding was an excerpt from Broken Windows Broken Business.