I was at the local Tim Horton's to pick up my lunch today. They have those bread toasters with the conveyor belts. Over the last 2 months, the toaster has started screeching, progressively getting louder and louder every time I visit.

I can only take about 5 minutes in that place. I can't imagine meeting someone for coffee and trying to listen to the person attentively.

A while back, I asked an employee there if the noise bothered him. He told me you get used to it after a while. Kind of like that frog in hot water experiment I guess. (Come to think of it I haven't seen him in a while.)

Management and the staff seem oblivious; just going about their job without emotion.

Is your business becoming like that?

Do you say your business is one thing but the reality is that employees and customers see something different? 

It used to run well and really look after customers. Then something minor went wrong and you overlooked it because you were busy.

Just like broken windows and graffiti in a neighborhood give permission to commit escalating levels of petty crime, things progressively get worse until they cross a threshold.

Then one day you wake up to find your customers are leaving and you don't enjoy what you do anymore.

As Anuarag Gupta reminded us at a recent seminar hosted by ProCoach, "You get what you tolerate".

Are you tolerating things that you shouldn't? Why?


Even if no one else hears it you must address it. Or what you will really be hearing is your business's death spiral.