While we love to see food truck owners getting motivated toward the end of the year, New Year’s resolutions are not the answer.
Yes, we still want to see owners reflecting and figuring out new ways to make their businesses better in the new year, as well as eliminate things that don’t work, but SMART goals are much more effective. After all, stats show that more than 90 percent of people fail on their New Year’s resolutions.
You might think you’re the exception with resolutions, but there’s a smarter way to achieve success.
But first, let’s list off some reasons why you shouldn’t make food truck resolutions.
Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Make Food Truck Resolutions
While there are an unlimited amount of reasons why resolutions fail, here are some of the reasons:
- People make resolutions when their motivation is at an all-time high, so they tend to make resolutions that aren’t achievable or resolutions that they lose sight of once things go back to normal after the first couple of weeks into the new year.
- Many resolutions are just stating what someone wants. While it’s essential to have dreams and work toward them — just like you worked toward making your dream of becoming a food truck owner come true — you have to add deadlines and plans to goals, as well as make them achievable, relevant and measurable.
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- Resolutions typically call for something we want to drastically change, such as never eating bad food again. Unfortunately, drastic changes tend to not stick. Goals, on the other hand, are treated like a marathon, not a sprint, which is how resolutions are treated.
- Most resolutions happen in the mind, meaning all we do is think about making changes — we don’t actually take the necessary steps (aka taking action) to make something happen.
- Life happens and things like responsibilities get in the way. Or we’re too busy. Or we’re burned out after a long day after work (surely, food truck owners can relate since they are known to put in double-digit hours every day). The point being, we push resolutions off to a more convenient time that might never come.
- We don’t want to enjoy the process of getting better, of making our businesses better. We just want to see end results. Focusing on the end result is going to be discouraging because big changes take time.
- We bite off more than we can chew. As a result, we make unrealistic resolutions that aren’t possible.
- We rather do something else than make our resolutions come true. So many people rather take the entertainment route. They rather go out on a Friday night than stay in and put in extra work. Of course, many food truck owners aren’t like that and they are cooking up a storm on a Friday night or on the weekends in general. Nonetheless, this is one of the many reasons why resolutions fail.
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If a good majority of resolutions don’t work, then what are FoodTruckrs supposed to do?
The key is making a goal that will not only challenge you but that’s also realistic, as well as something that you can measure with numbers. On top of that, a deadline has to be attached. The final step is creating a plan that you can actually stick to. Implement that plan into your schedule and then take action.
Achieving success is no easy feat, especially in the food truck industry. While you have to work hard to break into the mobile kitchen industry, you have to work just as hard to grow your business and achieve even more success.
It’s not easy to make changes, especially when we create New Year’s resolutions when were extremely motivated. Then, we have to try to reach those absurd goals when we’re not motivated.
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Reflection should be an ongoing process and you should constantly be improving your food truck, and eliminating things that don’t work.
In terms of resolutions as a whole, we encourage you to make them SMART goals because that’s how you achieve success over a long period of time. Resolutions alone will not get the job done and they will only discourage you when you don’t make them happen.
Just in case you need a refresher on SMART goals:
Specific: What exactly do you want to achieve and why? Get very specific. Instead of saying you want to make more money at your food truck, say you want to increase your revenue by 20 percent.
Measurable: If you don’t add metrics to your goal, then you won’t be able to measure it and won’t be able to see your progress as a result. Incorporate numbers into your goals.
Achievable: It’s easy to make a huge goal, but if it’s not achievable, then you likely won’t make it happen and will get discouraged. You want your goal to be challenging, but it also needs to be something you’re capable of.
Relevant: Your goal needs to be relevant to your business. For example, adding a catering service is a relevant goal (or adding five catering jobs by March 2019). Adding 50 employees when you only have one food truck likely isn’t, although only you know what’s possible at your truck.
Time-bound: You have to add a date/timeline to your goal. This will help you stay on track and also give you an idea of when you need to achieve your goal by.
Think about what you really want to achieve in 2019 and then make SMART goals. Take action and work on those goals every single day (or whenever your schedule says to work on them). It’s fine to create resolutions, but you have to take them a step further and turn them into goals.
With winter around the corner, we thought the below article (preview included) would be relevant for food truck owners.
3. Maintain Belts and Hoses
You know how your belt feels a little tighter after Thanksgiving dinner—almost like the leather might burst? Well, cold temperatures can do the same thing to the belts inside your food truck, adding extra strain that makes them likely to stretch and snap. To get your truck ready for a long, chilly winter, have your mechanic look at all of the belts and hoses to make sure everything is still in good shape. If your city is experiencing a particularly cold winter, it’s also a good idea to perform an additional mid-season check in January. A snapped belt might not seem like a major catastrophe, but it’s the type of maintenance problem that can put your truck out of commission until an expensive tow truck or on-site mechanic shows up to get you rolling again.
4. Check or Replace Your Battery
Between the chilly temperatures, busy crowds, and holiday catering events, you’re probably working extra hard during the winter—and your truck’s battery is too. When your engine needs even more power to get started, your battery can easily give out on you on a random, cold morning without any warning. Fortunately, if you have the battery tested ahead of time, you’ll know when it’s starting to run out of steam. Though you can test your battery yourself, you will need special equipment like a voltmeter to do so. However, many auto repair shops offer free battery checks—which is easier and more reassuring for truck owners who don’t have a lot of automotive knowledge.
You should check your battery regularly anyway, but it’s even more important when the weather is cold. Low temperatures slow down the chemical reactions in the battery that give power to your truck. Since your truck needs even more power to get moving during this frigid time of year, adding a low-voltage battery into the mix is a recipe for disaster. If your truck’s battery is starting to get low, buy and install a new one right away so that you don’t get stranded on the side of the road. This isn’t the type of truck repair you should delay.
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