Done a Liniment

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Done a Liniment

My colleague often talks, with a glistening eye, about his “rugby days”. When men were men and drinking all night and playing the next day was not only accepted, but expected. In those halcyon days fitness was just another word for strong and fearless. Back then even if you weren’t fit you should try and smell fit by rubbing in excessive amounts of liniment. It probably fooled some of the people, some of the time.

And so it is today in the world of business. There are a lot of companies who have for so long “done a liniment” on their business.

They have taken their clients’ eye off the problems in the company or the poor service delivery or the lack of vision and direction by “smelling fit” – fancy offices, embossed business cards, client lunches and shiny, digital marketing. Share prices have soared and staff motivation levels have plummeted. The city vultures have been sated as entrepreneurial flair is eroded.

Over time of course, the liniment has been wearing off and the real business doesn’t smell fit at all.

The cocky, overweight company. The wheezing, complacent organisation. The lazy, scheming firm. They are the complete antithesis of smart, healthy and dynamic business.

Papering over the cracks of a fatally flawed company can only last a certain amount of time. The pressures of the market have hit these companies between the eyes and they are reeling. They can no longer just smell fit; they now have to be fit. They have to look at their health across the business, to exact the changes on their business that should have been done years ago.

They need to move from smelling fit to actually being fit and with a proper fitness regime. This doesn’t mean telling everyone you’ve got a fitness app and then actually only going on Facebook. This isn’t telling everyone you have given up wheat and then stuffing yourself on Green and Blacks’.

This is reinvention, revolution and re-engineering. This is exciting stuff for those companies who recognise it.

Smell fit no longer works. If indeed it ever did. Being fit requires commitment, dedication and focus. For yourselves and for your business.

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