Without needing all the usual British Summer paraphernalia of coats and umbrellas, the warm evenings brought about by a quintessential summer has stretched my thinking time.
Amongst my meanderings, I realized that I haven’t met a successful small business owner who hasn’t experienced a failure or had a needless debt.
After investing endless hours and late nights culminated in nothing, the starting point for their success came about. They’d been there, done that, so it’s going to be different this time. Big ideas are rationalized, and strategic steps are made (Plan, Strategy, Review) retrenched with a different perspective, the late nights and endless hours continue, and they started over.
The Jackhammer drill ‘focus on profits’ is, without exception, something every lender, investor and spreadsheet bangs on about. And these business owners, do they have the same mantra? Of course! They’re in business. But they’ve also understood (through the endless hours and late nights) the importance of keeping the focus on their business first (their customers) before they’re able to get to the financial profits.
Just as they get to know their customers to give them what they want, I get to know my customers. I both want and need to understand what they want and need before I connect them with a company. The finance companies I interact with have some great offerings, many have given these businesses a chance to start over and, working together with the business owners we’ve managed to take away the needless debt.