Putting a value on your work, you and others

Krysti Kercher, a graphic artist, posted her discussion in her blog post My Artwork Has Value on how she had to cut her losses with one of her clients because their were devaluing her work, and she was letting them. Good for her for recognizing it. My good friend, Jan, she did a blog post Quality Work Deserves to be VALUED and added her comments about how her clients continue to devalue her efforts, “You don’t appreciate it because you don’t see the value.” These are familiar refrains, but I’ll be extending both of their thoughts and showing how businesses and customers both hurt their causes with their view of business.

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First and last impressions: Two different business experiences

IMG_1284You often hear, “You don’t get a second chance to make a good first impression.” But I always look past the first and look at a businesses LAST impression they made on me, I look at the complete experience. Everyone can have a bad day, even a bad week, so it’s a matter of allowing others the flexibility that life does happen.

My wife and I went to the Stapleton farmers market a few weeks ago and we purchased a few things, but what struck me was the differences between how these businesses  interacted with us and the crowd that were mingling around their booths and trucks. I watched their marketing and salesmanship, how they attract me as a customer and how they interact with me, and in one case the differences were night and day.

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Marketing imperfection increases sales and reduces waste

Having read years ago about a restaurant that was having a bad “table” that no one wanted to sit at for their meal, the restaurant decided to change how their customers viewed that one table near the front door and market it specifically to attract a small demographic of their current clientele.

But it’s not just a restaurant’s table, it’s also other aspects of one’s business: product seconds, defectives, etc. Here is what one industry market leader did to change the view of their customer toward imperfect products.

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Business failure = stinking at both your craft and your business

There are generally two ways that you fail at business and both of those reasons rely upon you, your thoughts, and most importantly, your actions. Winston Churchill said it best about business:

Some people regard private enterprise as a predatory tiger to be shot. Others look on it as a cow they can milk. Not enough people see it as a healthy horse, pulling a sturdy wagon.

So let’s take a quick look at the two areas that create a business or create a failure. But the main focus is having a health horse that pulls the wagon of your family’s life.

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You’re the Doctor of your Talents, share your talent’s cures

I just got off the phone coaching a lady who is a business coach herself and her target market is older ladies who are empty nesters (she wanted to know more about publishing her content into a book). You know those ladies, their kids are all grown, the husband is still working and has his routine, but now these ladies have LOTS more time now with little to do. If you’re older, your Mom is probably like that, too.

So as we were discussing about these ladies I told her that in my experience mothers, and to a lesser degree ladies, have a difficult time expressing themselves or speaking up. While us guys in most cases LOVE to talk about ourselves, we’re more like peacocks that strut around showing off our plumage. Women, not so much. But when you’re talking about a business, you HAVE to talk about your business. My comment to Connie was, “Connie, if you have the cure for cancer, would you keep it hidden, or would you be telling the world about it?” She gasped and said, “Well, I’d be telling the world about it!” I said, “Now THAT is how you handle your talents toward others, you’re the doctor of your talents, now share your talent cures!” At that moment, I knew I had another blog post. So what does it mean to be the Doctor of your Talents?

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Three More Testimonials

Testimonial letter from Henry Scadding (1883)

Testimonial letter from Henry Scadding (1883) (Photo credit: Toronto Public Library Special Collections)

One of the factors of any entrepreneur starting a business is getting testimonials, those comments from customers that tell others of the value of your work.

What most budding entrepreneurs do not understand is that the relationship between both business and their customer and vendors is essential, and missing this vital aspect of building a business becomes missed opportunities for future business and growth.

Too often budding entrepreneurs act like sponges, willing to take as much free stuff as possible with little to give back or share. One of the simplest acts to get noticed for your business is….

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The rise and fall of a company’s branding

As any entrepreneur knows there’s always the initial big push to find the right product and service for your customers. Most of the time it’s not the first try of your product, but the results of multiple testing and experiments of getting it right in solving a problem and then improving it over time.

As with anything, nothing ever sits still. Or does it?

But there is one thing which can stifle the growth of your business: Your bureaucracy.

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