As we welcome the New Year, it is common to look inward, professionally and personally, to see how we can make the New Year better than the last. Looking at your loss prevention program what do you see? Is your program one that may require change, or one that can remain consistent and still achieve better results? Should you change even if you had good results?
Consistency is Good…
In my experience with loss prevention programs when your program works well and gets good results, it is most likely consistent. Having consistency in your program and results means your company supported your initiatives and has worked toward achieving good results.
The following is an excerpt from Forbes Powerful Principles of Personal Growth. Although a personal growth statement, I believe it correlates to our daily business regarding consistency.
”My experience is that once you find a compelling reason to remain consistent, it gets easier; you begin to enjoy the journey. Find the fuel you need to propel you every day and it will become easier for you to maintain discipline.
It is through consistency that we develop habits; make sure that you are consistent with the right things. Just like change, consistency is a principle and it is at work even when you aren’t. It merely exists and you will get from it what you feed it. If you feed it bad habits, you will consistently get bad results.”
…But Change is Better
Successful leaders will tell you that no matter how well a program is operating there is always room for improvement. Change does not have to be drastic. Unless you are looking for far better results or things just are not working the changes you make can be slight to achieve greater results.
A personal example involves my running. If I run the same five mile loop every day at the same pace, I will probably get slightly faster or at least consistent in my timing for those five miles. However, I will not grow in speed, pace or distance and will most likely end up bored and stop running. Now, if I take a different route that includes a hill, a different distance and even run faster, I will keep my running program fresh, gain strength and progress in my running abilities. The slight change of distance, terrain or pace has brought me to a new level.
A loss prevention program is no different. As your program matures over time, you must ask yourself what is working, what could change and if you did make changes, what new results might you achieve?
- If you notice that internal theft apprehensions are down, however the number of dishonest associates under 90 day employment has increased, maybe implementing a stronger background screening program or increasing new hire LP awareness is the answer.
- Your audit results seem to be consistently high in passing grades, yet you still have some pockets of high shrinkage or loss locations. Do you make changes to your Focus or Target store audits to look for correlation of high losses and store operations outside of normal operational controls?
- Assign new roles or projects to different team members to get a new look at your programs. Bring in new partners (operations, human resources, store personnel, outside resources) to help think of or brainstorm new ideas on how to change your programs. A fresh set of eyes or different approach may be the best thing to help freshen up a program or make a change that results in a big difference.
I leave you with another great analogy from Forbes Powerful Principles of Personal Growth about change that is a great way to think about your team and LP Program when analyzing your business.
“It is impossible to achieve any level of growth without change first occurring. The very act of growing is in effect changing. No growth can take place at the same level of awareness prior to the growth. With awareness comes new thought and with new thought comes new action which begets change.
There is a reason for changing seasons – it involves a cycle of growth and we receive a new cycle each year through the 4 seasons. In order to achieve the results you desire in your personal growth, you must be willing to change what you are doing today. You will be unsuccessful if you simply continue doing the same things and expect different results – that’s insanity.
The most important thing to remember about change is that it happens with or without you. Just because you refuse to change doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. Change is a principle – a constant – it doesn’t matter what you or anyone else does, it will simply exist – always.”
All the best in the New Year and I wish you great success in your loss prevention initiatives.
Written by Joe Faul, National Client Services Manager