One of the biggest pitfalls of business ownership, is determining if something just isn’t working anymore and it’s costing you more money than what the situation is worth continuing. Everyone has faced it at one point or another, but the decision is just how long is it going to take to move on with what needs to be done.
The Pretty Client
They were your first client, you’ve grown to be great friends with them, and they may have even invited you over for barbeque at the house. They’re wanting to talk your ear off or keep asking for a discount because you did it when you were hungry and desperate for business. When was the last time that they may have actually paid you on time without you having to ask them where the money was to pay your invoice. Unless “bank” is somewhere in your company name, then that’s something that you need to seriously re-think. Are they going to pay your mortgage when your bill comes due? Are they going to be putting food on your table when it’s dinner time?
The Pretty Employee
Every week it’s something different. They’re coming in late because they had a bad night, or they have a sick relative they need to take care of. The mistakes keep being made over and over, because they “just can’t get it” but it’s not their fault for not being able to understand how something works. Or, they figure that someone else will fix it so they just need to get through the day in order to get to the end of it and collect a paycheck, which most everyone has done at one point in their life. How much is that person costing you in mistakes that need fixing?
The Pretty Vendor
Why is customer service so important to everyone these days, but because you’ve worked with the same sales rep for so many years, a few messed up orders can be overlooked over a long time. A change in leadership has gotten your favorite person you deal with on a regular basis to tell you they can’t work with you, but you refuse to accept it because you already have a strong relationship with this person. Prices keep going up and you refuse to shop around because you have those that you are loyal to. At what price should loyalty come in the name of the success of your business? Can you afford to compromise?
I was reminded of all of this when I sat down across from a long-term client and we were working through a situation to figure out how best to proceed. We resolved to keep discussing how to accomplish our goal of continuing to make more money, which is why we’re in business. In fact we’re exploring another potential revenue opportunity because we both know why we’re in business. And let me tell you this piece of advice, anyone who says they’re not in business to make a living, should reconsider what their goals really are they’re trying to fulfill.
Marcus Lemonis, a successful entrepreneur and host of “The Profit” from CNBC, has said “If you don’t evolve, you will die.” This is what adaptability is all about – so which “pretty one” is it time to say goodby to?
Dwayne J. Briscoe