Scrolling my Facebook feed this week, a friend and proud father posted a video of his grown son, a professional ballet dancer, practicing a piece with his female dance partner. They were not clad in fine performance costumes or bejeweled for a stage performance in the video, it looked like just another Tuesday in the studio running their muscles through whatever marvelous piece they were set to perform sometime in the future.

But it was breathtaking.

The freedom, the grace, and the stress-free lines of their bodies intricately moving in a choreography of amazing beauty. It was as if the next required movement was chosen by their souls simultaneously and given as much concern as to what tooth to brush next in the morning, as opposed to being directed by eight counts and choreographers. Even without the flappery of costumes, lighting, and a set, the dance transcended everyday life.

I found myself in an endless loop of watching and re-watching this simple clip of two professional dancers working to get it right for untrained critics, like myself, willing to pay the price of admission. Yet, I could not help but to reflect, “How many hours of practice led up to that 15 seconds that caught my attention?” The cumulative pain, sweat, tears, insecurity, injuries, do it again’s, and small victories that added up to an effortless all-encompassing beauty.

And such is the cycle of life, the few who choose to dedicate themselves are the tiny threads that weave the sincerity into our own lives. The glitter on a dull landscape of endless to do list and appointments. Two individuals willing to sacrifice the time of their life for my pleasure.

In small business, we can sometimes feel as if we are on the never ending gerbil wheel producing, producing, producing but never creating a thing or life of sincere accomplishments like those two dancers. But it doesn’t have to be that way. What made these few seconds of dance so beautiful was the relaxed muscle memory of anticipating the next need of their partner. In the stress-free knowledge that 100% effort would be given. A system of small feedbacks cueing into the next step, and a complete openness to each other for creating something together, working as a team, as one. The beauty comes from effortlessness.

Effortlessness comes from many, many, many hours of creating together. The endless practice of team building in order to transcended the every day and make it more.

And remember, they weren’t being “the man behind the curtain” so to speak. No lights, no glitz, or glam. Yet they transcended themselves to be more than who they were. Just two simple dancers in dance wear. Allowing that disciplined part of themselves to take over and be more than who they are. To transcend circumstances, surroundings, and even their own names.

The autonomy created by the greatness of being nothing in of oneself and simultaneously being altogether every bit of necessary air in the room that takes your breath away, is a measure of success few will ever reach but all should strive for.

That greatness was not achieved by fail sweeps of getting it right. Effort, dedication, and never ending tenacity creates paradigm shifts in understanding and eventually creates a life of value. Don’t focus on lifestyle.  Instead, focus on life skills. They did not walk in with a set of new tights that week.  Owning something does not make you somebody. Focus instead on doing what it takes to get the job done.

Creating the choreography of your business is an important step to take for making everything in front of customers run smoothly and efficiently. A well-rehearsed repertoire of how to meet customer needs between employees and managers may require endless amounts of preparation but the results are worth it.

90% of the time when I am consulting with small business owners the synergy between those dancers is what is missing in their business’ day to day operations and holding them back from success.  The choreography between consumer and provider is blocked by inefficient systems, bad communication policies, and untrained staff.

Every customer interaction and transaction is a perfect dress rehearsal to your attaining the next level of professional service.  Take advantage of the time given by your consumers to refine your craft.  Appreciate your customers with exacting professionalism created by never ending improvement and refinement.

So how do you apply this today?

  1. Systems, systems, systems. Every employee should know the protocol for everyday business encounters and how to assist customers or voice production needs.
  2. Clear, never ending employee training. Each year business changes. In just the tax area alone, changes can be insurmountable for small business. Technology, culture, economy, and seasons are always changing. Set up for success but always training employees and yourself for the future.
  3. Massive effort and organization should happens behind the scenes. The do it again’s and insecurities should have as much happening behind the scenes as possible. Your customers and clients deserve a well prepared business.
  4. Every customer interaction and production is your main performance. Strive to make every day transcend personalities, uniforms, and surroundings to create the utopia your customers need for their next purchase experience.