Moving Dirt for Constant Improvement

About a year ago, I publish a blog post on moving dirt. When writing it I have no idea the impact it would have on my readers. I was simply sharing a story about a young rebellious kid whose father decided to use unconventional methods of discipline. It connected with many people who had had similar experiences growing up. But what I ultimately realized is that this process of constant improvement is the key to success in an endeavor.

As I’ve developed over the last year or so, I’ve realized why the depth of that story affects so many people. An acquaintance of mine, John Welbourne, has a quote that I recently discovered that says “fitness is like moving a giant pile of dirt. Some days you’re able to take a shovel. Other days you can only use a spoon. But as long as you continue to move dirt every single day, you’re achieving your goal.”

What I found is that this quote is effectively the key to life, not just fitness. Nothing that we ever set out to do is going to go exactly as designed. No matter how detailed and accurate your plans are, life has a way of throwing those plans directly into the trashcan upon takeoff. This last year was a prime example of that. Our South Capital Partners team had one of the best meetings I’ve ever been a part of at the beginning of 2020. We had grand plans with exact details. We’d flushed out a manpower plan, discussed opening additional units, and finished with one of the most energized and fired-up teams I’ve been a part of. Then March happened. The coronavirus hit America, and all of our plans came to a screeching halt. We had closed all of our units less than three weeks later.

2020 – The Year of Constant Improvement

No, we could have thrown in the towel, but that’s just not how are built. We understand that if we just focus on controlling what we can control, the rest will fall in place. So we decided to first work on our team. So we completely rebuilt our H.O.O.T.S. program. The stands for Hiring, Onboarding, Orientating, Training, and Sustaining. We know that in order to attract the talent we desire we have to become the organization that desired talent is seeking. Life isn’t so different. If we want to attract a certain type of person, we need to become the person that type of person is seeking.

Secondly, we rebuilt all of our menus from the ground up in order to be able to serve to walk-up and to-go services. There’s a saying in the restaurant business, launching a new menu is a lot like having a baby – it takes nine months and hurts like hell. It was a complete renovation of all offerings, how we make them, and how we serve them.

Thirdly, in order to keep all of our staff that we could and keep them working, we renovated, to our best abilities, all of our restaurants. Most of it was superficial stuff like cleaning up trash repairing sheets and benches, painting, staining, and small touch-up jobs. We knew we had some really great people on our teams and their families and loved ones relied on this job. All in all, 2020 was an incredible year of growth and opportunity.

Gratitude is the Attitude

When we started all of this work, we were working with a snow shovel. As we continued to move dirt, the shovel became smaller and smaller until we were working with a teaspoon, but we’re still moving dirt. We are still striving every day to create constant improvement across all of our brands. Obviously, we wouldn’t be here if the government hadn’t passed the two payroll protection programs, but there were many businesses that didn’t even make it to that point.

I want to take a second to thank all of our team members and guests who believe in us. We 100% wouldn’t be here without all of you.

But let me ask you this: Who are you more likely to help? The person on the side of the road with their flashers on sitting in their front seat? Or the person with their flashers on pushing their car down the road?

Get out and start digging; the help will find you!

It’s Go TIME!