When you go to these events, you always pray that the keynotes will be worth your time. Very often they are the embodiment of the word droning. "Blah blah blah. The future is bright if you buy our products."
Monday's keynote by Motorola Channel Chief Janet Schijns was great for me. I was tired and ready to be bored, but right off the top she hit me with a line I had not heard before:
- Are you willing to make the claim that your business is only doing well because of the economy?
Then you can't make the claim that your business is only doing poorly because of the economy!
We're humans, so when things are going great we take the credit. And when things go south, well that's because of outside forces we can't control.
In other words, no one is willing to admit that they're not doing things right.
To be fair, you might not know that you're doing things wrong until the economy goes on the skids. In other words, you've got a good business model for good times, but you don't adjust when the economy changes.
You ARE responsible for your business model. As a result, you DO get the credit when things are moving up. But you also need to be responsible when conditions change.
Several vendors have told me that they've seen many small shops disappear this year. Those folks were not necessarily bad business people (some were, of course). Many of them simply had "good times" business models.
So here's the hard part:
If you're still in business, and you've had a resilient business model, congratulations.
Now you need to change it again. The economy is going to pick up. And as you move from having too much capacity to taking on new jobs, you need to make that move wisely. Do not hire another person until way after it's clear you need someone and can sustain the larger payroll.
The result will be a bubble of money flowing into your company as you maintain a steady payroll and take on more jobs.
Just a thought.
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