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Stable Management System

The Six Steps To Sanity, Finding Peace in a World of Paperwork
by Tim Hiebert - Sureshod Services, Inc.

Sanity The state of good mental balance: The condition of being mentally healthy and able to make rational decisions.
Horse StableSix Step System to Headache Free Stable Management
•Step One:    Start
•Step Two:    Assemble
•Step Three:   Nice
•Step Four:    Implement
•Step Five:     Time
•Step Six:       You

This may sound like your life.   Run here, run there, make sure this horse gets turned out and check on the mare in stall six.  What did that sticky note say?   Was it 4 pounds or 6 pounds of grain?  I can’t remember!  I need to return Sally’s phone call; what did I tell her about her invoice?  Oh, I forgot about the horse committee meeting; that’s in fifteen minutes. This is insane; I wish my business were more organized and I were running my business instead of my business running me.

Believe me, we understand your exhaustion and we’re listening.  Several years ago, those were the same problems we faced in our business.  It was at that time, that we began the process of creating a stable management system to assist us in implementing the six steps listed above.  It didn’t take long and we began to see that we could own and operate our own stable without it controlling every minute of our lives.
If this reminds you of your own life, then we hope you’ll enjoy these simple steps to create The Barn Manager’s Dream . . .  Sanity!

Step One  - Start Smart!
If you’re reading this article, you’ve probably come to the realization that the way things are is not the way you’d like them to be.  Instead of trying to do everything for everyone, identify your niche in the stabling industry and capitalize on that.  Try not to compete at being the lowest price for the most amounts of work. Instead, bring something of value to the marketplace that clients cannot find anywhere else.  Then charge reasonably for that value.  There is a mindset in business called the shrinking pie mentality which states there are only a limited number of pieces (people) interested in a service and you must fight to gain your piece of that pie.  If you are Professional, Pleasant and Provide a good service, you will maintain a solid client base with a good reputation for value. 

Step Two - Assemble a good team!
This step causes many of us the most trouble because as horse people, we are very independent with an undeniable urge to be doing it ourselves.  Unfortunately, doing it ourselves takes us away from what’s important . . .  and that is managing our clients, their horses, and the market place.
Different people and businesses have skills that can be very useful in your business; find those people and begin to network.  We’ve found that in many cases, skilled professionals are often very willing to trade their services for yours.  

Step Three - Nice – It’s Not Always Easy!
Horse Stable Client
We all know that our clients are the life blood of our business, without them we wouldn’t be in business.  Having a pleasant, easy going attitude with open lines of communication will go a long ways in keeping clients happy.  Unfortunately, there are those clients, no matter how nice we are, that we will never be able to please.   The reality is those clients can do more damage than the financial compensation they provide.  Their constant unpleasantness adds stress to our lives that can impact our health and positive mental attitude thereby affecting our relationship with the clients we appreciate.   One must always weigh the impact an individual like this can have on you and the other members of your facility.  It’s not always a bad thing to ask someone to leave . . . nicely. 

Step four - Implement a Good System!
In these next two steps, we hope the stable management system we offer will provide something tangible to bring sanity to your business. 

Research shows that businesses that use systems outperform their competition.  Systems bring order to your business and provide predictable and reliable ways of doing things.  A system gives you greater control over your business which allows you to accomplish more with less stress and better quality. The Sureshod Stable Management System was designed to streamline the data management involved in managing clients and their horses.  It eliminates the sticky notes that are so often attached to our computers and litter our desk.  A good stable management system will pay for itself many time over by giving you the freedom to spend more time doing the things you love.

Step five  - Time . . .  there’s only so much of it!
Time management skills are essential if you want to be an effective manager.  People who use these skills are better able to perform under pressure.  Even better, you will have control over your workload instead of work overload.  The key is to focus on results – not just being busy.   Stable managers often spend much of their day in a fury, unable to accomplish the key things that affect their business.  Too often, we focus on putting out the little fires that flare up during the day.

Here are four simple things to help you manage your time:
1. Create an activity log to see where you are currently spending your time.
2. Make a list (the night before) of the important things to accomplish; try to stick to it.
3. Set Personal Goals for yourself and your business - for the day, week, month and year.
4. Set up a schedule (daily, weekly, monthly) to accomplish the goals you’ve set for yourself.

We hope that our system will assist you in organizing the things that need to be done.  On numerous occasions, we’ve found that this system will save you a minimum of four (4) hours per month.  Depending on what you pay yourself, that can add up to quite a savings – both in time and money.

Step six - You can’t take it with you!
Family and friends with horses
It’s an unfortunate truth and one we wish to ignore, but we can’t take it with us when we go.  We’ve spoken about time management and setting goals; we would also like you to consider the priorities you build your life upon.  Are you focused on the best things? 
I have found it helpful to periodically remind myself of this fact so that I fully understand what adds long-term value to my life.  This in no way means we should not enjoy the wonderful things with which we’ve been blessed, but we should be careful that those things do not control our lives.  The last thing any of us will say at the end of our lives is “I wish I’d spent more time working.”   Life is so very short; don’t miss out on relationships with your family, friends or your heavenly Father.

We hope that this simple article has given you a few ideas on how to bring some sanity back to your business and your life and we look forward to assisting you in attaining the goals you have set for your business.  Sureshod Services, Inc. - “No Hoof, No Horse, No System, No Sanity”

Contact: Our Friendly Staff
PO Box 242
Gallatin Gateway, Montana 59730
Phone: 406-763-3701

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