We had just returned from a brief family holiday in Fiji and while I was there I began to think about the energy or vibe or feel of a small business and how powerful and profitable it can be when you get it right.

If you have ever been to Fiji you would have experienced "Fiji time" which is basically I'll get there when I get there. I know a few people who don't live in Fiji who run on Fiji time. The Fijians aren't all that concerned about maintenance either.

We stayed at a place called Plantation Island. A postcard setting. The first day I went sailing and the first cat the steering broke and I manage to jury rig it and get back to the beach about 2 km away. When I got back to the beach they didn't seem to be too phased and told me to take the other boat. So I did and that one broke after about 20 minutes as well.
Another day we decided to go for a paddle around the bay and the kayak sunk as it didn't have a bung. When we got back and told them, they said no worries we have a bung, here you are.

I went sports fishing and the boat looked like it had been found wrecked on a beach somewhere and they just gave it a coat of paint and off we go. I went scuba diving and the equipment failed when I tested it, fortunately shortly after we left the jetty so they said "no worries we'll just go back and change the gear" Another time I went night diving and of course the navigation and compass lights don't work so we just go really slow and have someone sit on the front of the boat holding a torch.

I could go on with so many other instances of over promise and under deliver but I guess you get the picture.

You might think I am saying don't go to Plantation Island but I would suggest to you the exact opposite. I would recommend anyone to go there as it was a lovely place but it was the people and their energy that made the stay a wonderful experience. They were all so happy and caring and it didn't matter what job they had in the island they would all smile every time you saw them and say hello or "Bula" and often engage you in a conversation. The interesting thing was anytime you were engaged in a conversation they were always interested in you and what you had been doing, they never spoke about themselves unless of course you asked, but it wouldn't be long until the focus was back on you.

So what has this got to do with your business? Well for one thing I am not promoting being slack with your punctuality or maintenance or not worrying about over promising and under delivering. All of these things are pivotal for a successful business, but the point is the positive energy coming from you and your team can be overwhelmingly powerful and you need to pay attention to it.

It might sound a little out there, but the energy coming from your business is real and it can have a major effect on its profitability in many ways. I am sure you have experienced walking into a room and getting a feeling like this is a fun exciting place. Or on the contrary you may have felt that it had a “bad vibe”. You would have also heard expressions like “you could cut the air with a knife”. This generally refers to the energy or feel of an environment or situation. And everyone picks up on these subtle energies and responds to them, and for the most part, most people do this unconsciously. But the bottom line is everyone reacts to these energies in pretty much the same way. Negative energy repels and makes people feel uncomfortable, which causes them to want to get away and not return, and of course positive energy does just the opposite. It makes people feel comfortable and they want to get back into that environment again and again.

So where does this positive energy come from? Well ultimately it must come from the owner/s. The old saying is “The fish rots from the head”. So really it is the primary responsibility of the Owner/s to monitor and have a commitment to being a positive force on the organisation. This is done by making sure that daily you make sure you “choose” a positive and energetic attitude before entering the workplace and spread the positive energy with reassurance and recognition of the efforts of individuals at every opportunity. As well as jumping on any negative comments or behaviour from any team members but in a positive and supportive manner.

It is essential for the leaders to have a genuine respect and show a real interest in the team members, their interests and challenges as this flows down the line to how the team members treat your clients.

This energy I am talking about needs to be a genuine positive energy, so you can’t be stressed out and yelling and screaming around the place and put on the “show biz smile” in front of the customers, it simply won’t cut the mustard.

Is this easy? No but it is so worth it on so many levels, from lowering your blood pressure and feeling more energetic, to creating a fun environment that you actually look forward to go to, to being infinitely more rewarding and the biggy of course, making the business tons more profitable. And it may be profitable now but I will guarantee you are missing out on a ton of money for the business through not having raving fans for customers, inefficiencies from staff that don’t give a toss and from people who are just worn out because negative energy drains people and positive energy uplifts them, so it really is a no brainer.

So make sure you are asking yourself daily before you get started, “ am I choosing the best energy I can to take to work?”

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