Auto Shop Coaching Blog

My Biggest Frustration With Goal Achievement

“Don’t be upset by the results you didn’t get from the work you didn’t do.”Zig Ziglar

“I’m thinking that one session of repair order audits will instantly solve my Average Repair Order problem!”

“I’ve been in business for thirty years, but I’m certain that my upcoming thirty-minute coach call will forever fix my business!”

“Follow up calls don’t work! I made one yesterday and my car count has not improved!”

Can you relate to this pattern of thinking? While I haven’t had these specific thoughts, I can relate to having this level of impatience.

As your typical “type A” personality, I prefer instant results.

So, here is my biggest frustration when it comes to goal achievement: On the path to your goal, everything you do counts for something, but nothing counts for everything.

In other words, there is no “one thing” that you can do to accomplish a meaningful goal.

It’s frustrating!

One of the keys to overcoming this frustration is to embrace the stone cutter’s perspective.

Ideas to grow your businessGetting back to the basics every day often makes the biggest difference in the bottom-line. Discover valuable tips and strategies in ATI’s free webinar.

The Stone Cutter

The San Antonio Spurs are one of the most successful franchises in professional basketball. They’ve won five NBA Championships and have the highest regular-season winning percentage in league history.

With all their success, the players are still vulnerable to feeling the same frustration.

Their Coach, Greg Popovich, has instilled a culture that inspires them to maintain the right perspective.

Hanging in their locker room is the following quote from a journalist named Jacob Riis:

“When nothing seems to help, I go and look at a stone cutter hammering away at his rock, perhaps a hundred times without as much as a crack showing in it.  Yet at the hundred and first blow, it will split in two, and I know it was not that last blow that did it—but all that had gone before it.”

What are you trying to achieve?

  • Do you have a goal of becoming an absentee shop owner?
  • Have you always wanted to expand to multiple locations?
  • When you look at your ATI portal, do you want to be like that basketball player who sees nothing but “net?”

Your goal is like that rock and you are the stone cutter. The key is to chip away every day!

By now, you may be thinking: “Thanks for sharing Twiggs, but my desire for instant results hasn’t changed!” Keep reading to connect the dots.

Connecting the Dots

During his 2005 Stanford University graduation speech, Steve Jobs said:

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So, you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”

Let’s connect the dots by hopping into your Delorean time machine and going back 90 days to the week of March 2. How many exit appointments did you schedule?

If you scheduled 100% on 40 cars, and only 50% came in for their appointment, that’s 20 additional cars you would have for this week.  

Next, we will fast forward from the week of March 2 to last week by setting your time machine to the week of May 23.

How many “Where have you been calls” did you make to those customers you haven’t seen in 6 months? The average response rate on these calls is 15%.

40 calls would result in 6 additional customers (40 x 15% = 6)

How many incoming phone call recordings did you listen to? Improved execution of the phone script can produce at least 2 additional customers per day who would not have come in. 2 customers a day for 5 days is 10 additional cars.

In these scenarios, going back to the basics would have resulted in an additional 36 customers who would not have normally come to your shop. (20 + 6 + 10 = 36)

Connecting the dots makes it easier to see how chipping away at your goal, will pay off in the future.


So, there you have it. Embracing the Stone Cutter’s perspective and connecting the dots can help you to experience more fulfillment and less frustration.

For more tips on how to bring customers to your shop and plan your shop’s comeback, check out our free webinar.

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Eric, the Accountability Coach, is an Executive Coach at ATI and has coached since 2009. Eric came to ATI having managed over 60 different automotive repair facilities and having supervised over 500 employees at a given time. He loves seeing members progress beyond what they thought was possible and improve their shop to the point where they can leave for weeks at a time and come back to a business that's better than when they left.