“Profit is the measure of how well the people ‘played the game.’ “ — John Mariotti
Business success is about more than just money. We need to make the money to stay in the game but ultimately it’s about people and problems. The right team of people solving the right problem can change your business and your bottom line. In “The Most Important Word in Business,” John Mariotti says, “Everything that happens in business starts with the actions of people.”
You and your team ultimately decide and execute the “who,” the “what” and the “how” of your business. And the better you do this, then the better the bottom line. But true to life as we know it, your team doesn’t turn you into an automatic success. However, it does give you a strong foundation to build on.
But your team members aren’t the only people you need to pay attention to.
Prospects are your future.
Prospects are potential clients and the future growth of your business. So, how do you get more of them? And how do you turn them into paying customers? In “A 5-Step Sales System to Get Prospects Buying,” Ivana Taylor states, “We continue to look at sales as a function of chemistry, persuasion and luck instead of it being the logical outcome of a process.”
Believing that there are specific things that we can do, Ivana says, “If you’re not following a sales recipe that consistently delivers your ideal customer, then you don’t have a process.” She shares the six steps that she follows, including the one that reminds you that “your job isn’t to sell them, it’s to help them make a decision that they are happy with.” That one piece of advice can set a reluctant business owner free to sell, or rather guide your potential clients to real solutions for their business and their life.
Keep this in mind, even as you pursue prospects, never neglect your core clients. After all, they are the heart of your company. Once you get them, take care of them. That leads us to another people situation to pay attention to.
Protect your reputation.
Can I get insurance for that? Your reputation means so much. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could buy a policy that paid out any time someone said something about us that we didn’t like (even if the statement was true)? And before you call the insurance agent and the lawyer for a case that you don’t have, consider this: Some of the best insurance is directness and support.
In “3 Ways to Protect Your Reputation,” Janet Meiners Thaeler says, “A reputation is like trust: It grows over years but can be ruined in seconds.” She advises that “when you hear of damage done, address the problem quickly. Once the damage sets in, it can become fact in people’s minds.” And you don’t want that.
Ultimately, your business boils down to the people who help you run it, your ability to attract new people to your product or service, and your willingness to protect your reputation because if we trust it, then we work with it. So, if the “game of business” is people, prospects and protection, how well do you play?