We all like to read and share good articles on how to grow your business, how to be your own master, how to acquire audience and clients, how to improve your social or this or that skill…basically it seems that for any number of business owners, there are same or more solutions on how to better your company and on how to grow it to the level desired.
Nothing wrong with this, one did the same and one thought for a long time that the rules laid ahead of him by others are going to replace nicely his own sweat, blood and tears. Them rules did not change anything for him, obviously; au contraire, these rules made him believe that he HAS to succeed, in spite of the fact that one was actually dreaming in a perfect complacency; after all, they were written by guys more advanced than him in, well, this sort of things. Or so he thought.
He was feeling downright frustrated: after observing the rules by the book, his business wasn’t overflowing with customers, his social skills and experiences were not suffering a change for the better, and his business income was not presenting a major increase in numbers. He was confused.
After some time, he remembered the old saying: if something doesn’t work anymore, it could mean that you are using the wrong approach. or as they say in movies: back to basics. So, he dusted off his old business approach, lost somewhere inside him, and applied old methods to new challenges:
- Quality – if you are doing it, you better do it right. Put all your muscles into it, do not spare an effort in order to bring quality to your client. This is what he is after, you know. Nobody is going to pay for a patchy work or for a slack attitude towards a project task completion.
- Consistency – you have to (or at least you should) provide consistency in your work and results. Client cannot be taken onto a ride upon a roller coaster of good, very good, best, excellent, best, very good, and then satisfactory reports. It puzzles him and makes him think twice your collaboration with his company. Sometime, we forget that our clients may not be the final recipients of our reports; more, we somehow loose focus on fact that our client may be an intermediary. If so, your roller coaster reports may earn him a bad or questionable reputation from HIS clients, the ones who really ordered the report. Don’t do this to yourself, don’t do this to your clients, be they final recipients or not.
- Honesty – as the song says, “it pays to be polite”. Indeed so: it pays to be honest in your relation with your client, very much so in the long run (and in the short run as well). Don’t do the main no-no thing: DON’T invent and don’t distort your findings. Be concise, be straightforward, be daring (why not), be inventive, be quick or motivated slow, be on time, be brave, be smart, be there, be nice, be your deadline, be whatever. Just don’t be dishonest. As I said, it pays to be honest! And polite as well, for that matter!
- Value – you need action, you need clients, you need projects. All this because you need to work and then, afterwards, you need to pay your bills and bring home the bacon (OK then, a bag of veggies) to your family. But you see, you may have a problem: there are thousands of companies, exactly like yours. Same object of activity, same or almost the same professional qualifications, and (God forbid), similar or lower prices. How are you going to compete, or should I ask how are you going to make the client choose you, instead of one of your good competitors? Value, my friend. Value of your services, that is. The value which you will bring to your client’s benefit will make or break his decision to hire you. If your company and its services are not going to offer that extra inch of value, why should the client even bother to consider YOU and not one of your competitors.
- Dedication – any client will appreciate your dedication towards securing the best results for his project. He is indeed extremely attentive to such details as your dedication, commitment and task-focused actions. You do not have to say “I am dedicated” to your client, or to your prospective client; you have to prove it. How, I hear your question? Well, the simplest way of doing this is to be, ahem, dedicated. Period. There are not two ways of being dedicated. You are or ain’t.
As said, if something starts to go wrong with your business (perhaps with your life as well), it may well be that you grew complacent of the situation. Go back to basics, friend, go back to basics. Remember the days of your start, remember that solid things in life are built with blood, sweat and tears, and that every inch of your efforts are for the long term; hence the 5 rules to rule your business.
If you are looking for a shorter term results, give selling hot dogs a try; at the end of the day, you take home your income. Why worry about tomorrow?
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PS – selling hot dogs is actually quite a noble mission and honorable occupation. I meant this only as an example, not a judgment or disrespect.