Auto Shop Coaching Blog

How to Thrive During a Pandemic

“Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve your condition.”Ryan Holiday

What if my health fails? What if the economy gets worse? What if this pandemic lasts longer than they say it will?

Have you been asking these questions?

As I ponder these inquiries, I’m reminded of a recent study known as The Legacy Project, conducted by Dr. Karl Pillemer at Cornell University.

He surveyed over 1200 senior citizens living in an assisted living community. He asked them to reflect on what the biggest regret of their life was.

Here’s what they recorded as the number one answer: The amount of time they wasted worrying about the future.

They regretted worrying about the worst-case scenarios that never became a reality.

Will you look back with regret when you reflect on this pandemic season?

We are currently isolated from one another. Instead of meeting face-to-face, we use Zoom.

Our computer screens are starting to resemble the opening introductions of the Brady Bunch TV Show!

Brady Bunch TV Show

Photo added to assist the millennial who doesn’t watch reruns!

Here’s the key to thriving during this pandemic season: Don’t waste your time in isolation by focusing on speculation.

Keep reading to discover what you can do instead.

Ideas to grow your businessWant more tips for how to survive and protect your business during COVID-19? Discover valuable ideas and strategies in ATI’s FREE webinar Top 5 Ways to Overcome the COVID-19 Outbreak.

Stop Playing the “What If” Game

There are always two sides to playing the “what if?” game. For example, you can ask, “what if this pandemic lasts longer than forecasted?”

But you could also ask, “What if a miracle cure is discovered next week?” The bottom line in both cases is that we don’t know.

By attempting to answer either question, we would be speculating, which as mentioned earlier, is a waste of your time.

The best use of your time is to focus on doing the right things right now. All you can do is make the best decisions based on the current information you have.

I know what you’re thinking: “Thanks for sharing Twiggs, but I need more specifics. If only there were a tool that could help me to stay focused on the right things.”

Well, today is your lucky day! The tool you seek is The Rule of Five.

Apply the Rule of Five

What’s the first idea that pops into your head when you think of increasing your car count? I’ll bet you answered, “Email a special to my customers.”

When under pressure, the tendency is to go with what you know. Especially if the tactic has worked for you.

The problem is that what you already know doesn’t always work. Your chances of success would increase if you had to come up with four additional strategies.

At least two of your ideas would stretch your comfort zone because you wouldn’t normally try them. Uncomfortable methods tend to be the most effective!

This is what makes The Rule of Five such a great tool!

Here’s how it works: For any major business goal, pick at least five different things you can do this week to make it happen.

Below is a real-world example of The Rule of Five:

  1. Write a handwritten thank you letter to every customer and leave it on their steering wheel!
  2. Thoroughly clean every car before and after the service, and advertise this on all our social media platforms!
  3. Offer hands-free transactions (ex: text to pay) and emphasize this on the phone!
  4. Call the top 300 customers to say we are open, essential, and here for them!
  5. Call every customer that hasn’t visited in the last seven months and ask why they may have stopped coming and if there is anything we can do for them.

Applying The Rule of Five will force you to focus on doing the right things right now. Here’s a challenge to consider:

Conduct a weekly meeting with your team asking them the following question: “What five things can we do to improve business this week?


So, there you have it. By eliminating the “what if” game and applying the rule of Five, you can thrive during a pandemic.

When you are surveyed during your senior years, you will reflect on 2020 without feeling regret.

For more tips on protecting your business, staff, and customers during these challenging times, check out our FREE webinar Top 5 Ways to Overcome the COVID-19 Outbreak.

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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.