Auto Shop Coaching Blog

How to Get What You Want in Life

"People don’t buy what you do. They buy why you do it."Simon Sinek

Have you ever wondered: “How do I get what I want in life?” As I reflect on this question, I am reminded of an interview I saw this weekend with former Ohio State University Running back Ezekiel Elliott.

Coming out of high school, he was the top college football prospect in the nation, with over forty division one schools vying for his services.  During the interview, the reporter asked him why he chose Ohio State over the other universities. According to Elliott, it all came down to his encounter with the head coach Urban Meyer.

He recalled his first visit on campus where he met the coach in his office. They shook hands and before the star running back could take his seat, Meyer surprised him with the following question: “So Ezekiel, when we’re on the victory stage and I’m handing you the national championship trophy, what will you do next?” He replied, “Umm, I guess I will kiss it and raise it in the air with both hands.” This was the moment when Elliott knew he was going to play for Coach Meyer.

What was it about this experience that sealed the deal? Meyer was able to communicate a clear understanding of his destination. In other words, he started at the finish line and worked backward. This principle is key to getting what you want in life.

Your customers are like Ezekiel Elliott because your competitors are actively recruiting them. This is important to know since getting what you want is tied to your ability to attract and keep the right customers.

How can you leverage the idea of beginning with the end in mind, so that you become your clientele’s first choice? Stay with me and you will learn two proven strategies to help you get what you want in life.

Communicate a Clear Purpose

In his book Start With Why, and in his famous Ted Talk, Simon Sinek said the following: “The goal is not to do business with everyone who needs what you have. The goal is to do business with everyone who believes what you believe.” Ezekiel Elliott believed he could win the championship at the college level. Coach Meyer communicated a clear statement of purpose that separated him from the other competing universities.

Having a clear vision statement that expresses why you do what you do, will separate you from your competition as well. As you craft your statement of purpose, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. What is the big goal that inspires me?
  2. Where do I see myself in the next five to twenty years?
  3. How good do I want to be at providing my service, and on what geographic scale?  

An example of a vision statement would be as follows: “To be the most trusted provider of automotive repair in the state of Maryland.”

Expressing your statement on your website and marketing materials will also attract employees who believe what you believe. A recent Gallup survey concluded that only 41% of employees surveyed felt they knew what their company stood for and what makes the brand different from its competitors. This is why communicating a clear statement of purpose will cause you to stand out, which will help you get what you want.

Create a Goal Poster

Back in 2014, I coached a service writer named “Jerry,” who resisted my suggestion to create a goal poster. After three weeks he finally did one just to get me off his back. His shop owner decided to leave the ATI program several weeks later causing Jerry and me to lose contact.

Let’s fast forward to April of 2016. I received a message in my inbox from Jerry that read: “Eric, I just wanted you to know that I have accomplished most of my goals from the goal poster. I placed a picture of the house I wanted to own and have now saved up enough money to buy my first home.” This proves that if you can view it, you can do it.

The most important sale you have to make is to yourself. Seeing pictures of why you’re doing what you do will keep you sold on accomplishing the result and help you get what you want. This can also increase the level of engagement with your employees. Have you ever wondered what drives your technician who doesn’t seem to be money motivated? Having him do a goal poster will answer your question.

Please take note of this important disclaimer: The goal poster is not a magic pill. If you create a poster without the commitment to take the necessary action, your poster will become a portrait of things you don’t have!


Now whatever happened to Ezekiel Elliott? Well, two years after the meeting with coach Meyer, he was on the victory stage after leading Ohio State to the National Championship! Meyer handed Elliott the trophy and he raised it in the air after kissing it! He told the reporter that the moment felt like déjà vu because it happened just like he envisioned it. If you communicate a clear purpose and create a goal poster, your success will feel like déjà vu as well!

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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.