take the stairs

Book Review: Take the Stairs

In this feature, Rick Knight, President and Founder of Performance Administration Corp., will discuss what he’s been reading lately, and how it applies to franchise dealerships and the auto industry. Read something interesting that you’d like Rick to review? Drop us a line at Info@PerformanceAdmin.com.

Do you ride the escalator or take the stairs? No matter what your definition of success is, it constantly requires one thing: self-discipline. However, as the popular strategist and speaker Rory Vaden explains in his book Take the Stairs, we live in an “escalator world.” Our world is choked with quick fixes, shortcuts, and distractions that make it extremely easy to fall prey to compromise, procrastination, and mediocrity.

What seems like a convenient path, in the beginning, is more challenging in the end. And, it won’t take you to your desired destination.

So, how do successful individuals remain focused and achieve their goals? This insightful and lively guide takes you through a simple program for “taking the stairs” — resisting the temptations of procrastination and quick fixes, winning over creative evasion, and surpassing personal hindrances to tackle work that leads to real success. No matter what your goals for your dealership are, Vaden’s demonstrated approach will lead you there, one step at a time.


Key Takeaways from Take the Stairs

Drain the Shortcut Mentality 

Take the Stairs is all about empowering people to add discipline into their lives to achieve the success they crave. Vaden mentions that 95% of the world’s people are tempted by procrastination. To succeed, they often look for the easier path and ultimately make things harder for themselves. As he states, “procrastination is one of the most expensive visible costs in business today.”

Vaden also mentions how we keep waiting for the “right time” to do something. The perfect time will never come. You should stop worrying about making the correct decision and instead focus on making the decision correct. He urges you to move from the “Should I” attitude to the “How Will I” attitude. The book sets you up with a mindset that will push you to work harder every day.

He also encourages you to be entirely committed to your actions and take responsibility for what you do in your life or your business. Have faith in yourself and what you’re doing; everything good will flow from there.

Don’t Lose Focus in the Present If You Want to Reap Rewards in Future

Another aspect of the book many readers will resonate with is their obsession with what the future holds for them, which makes it impossible for them to enjoy the present. Always make your “now” beautiful. Focus on what you’re doing in the present moment. Improve your skills, grow, and learn. Don’t over obsess about the result; work hard and the results will follow. Even if the result is not what you desire, you’ll begin to value the journey and look at each step as a critical lesson.

Add Intention to the Scenario

The intention behind any action affects the outcome. Vaden mentions that self-discipline is the key to success and must come above everything else. Don’t measure your success by what people think about you. Establish your own success measure and believe in yourself.

Vaden’s philosophy rests on these seven strategies that can make you successful:

  • Sacrifice — What may seem easy in the short-term is actually harder in the long-term.
  • Commitment — The more you invest in something, the more dedicatedly you’ll work to make it a success.
  • Focus — A diluted focus leads to diluted results.
  • Integrity — Think it, speak it, act it, and you’ll achieve your goals.
  • Schedule — Balance your time between priorities.
  • Faith — Have faith in yourself and what you’re doing.
  • Action — Think less, act more; will is more important than skill. 

All in all, the book is a great read. Vaden is an experienced entrepreneur who’s accomplished some great things in life. Throughout the book, you’ll come across his touching personal stories and experiences, as well as interesting case studies to further prove his points. It’s not a mere entrepreneurial book; it’s an outlook on life. So, take the stairs, work hard, have faith in what you’re doing, and do your best to make it happen.

In closing, I find this book very relatable to life in the retail automobile industry and our 30-day cycle. Everywhere you look you will find short-term thinking when it comes to long-term growth.  This continues to happen at the manufacturer and dealership level. If your long-term goal is to successfully sell every customer their next vehicle, be sure you have a disciplined process in place that strategically aligns to that goal. Please share your thoughts or schedule time with me to discuss by clicking the link below.