Things Change…Things Never Change Part 1
It was almost 25 years ago to the date that I began my career as an entrepreneur straight out of college, ready to set the world on fire, my only problem was I didn’t have a match. I needed a good fire-starter and I found one in an experienced financial services professional named John.
John had been in the business for almost 40 years and to this day, I will never forget one of the first things he ever said to me. “Tim, the way business is done will change greatly between now and when you decide to hang it up…but the way you do business should never change and you need to commit to keeping it that way”. He was right; the ways of conducting business have greatly changed since I began in 1984. There are more things that require attention, more things that require detail than when I first opened the doors of my little financial services practice. See if you can relate to this…
Two “T’s” The New Competition
Competition has changed! I’m not referring to companies or individuals that offer similar services like me, I’m referring to the types of competition; the thing that I must deal with and manage everyday to stay ahead of the game and give myself the “competitive edge”. There are two “T’s” of this new competition. The first is TIME.
Everyone and everything competes for your time. Your existing clients need service and support, your potential prospects require attention. Your staff needs you; Your children and your spouse have needs. Then there are your friends, you social and civic responsibilities! WHEW! If you do not stay ahead of TIME it will control you.
The next “T” of competition is TECHNOLOGY. Now hold on, I am not knocking technology. I use it everyday. I bank online, I purchase things online, I even sell my products and services online. Technology is a great SUPPORT feature to business. What I am saying is that if you offer products and services YOU MUST DEMONSTRATE VALUE in doing business with you. There has to be more than just what is on the account form. There has to be more than the order form and the credit card information located on the website. If we don’t demonstrate value, if we take this competitor for granted, then we may one day surrender to that little electronic box with a screen which can be found in almost every office, and in every home that stands ready to offer our products and services available 24/7 without ever speaking to a human being…without ever speaking to you!
While the list of changes that have taken place over the last 25 years can be exhaustive, it is important to note that there are some things that have never changed and should never change. What worked 50 years ago- still works today and I can assure you will work 50 years from now. Curious to know…? Tune in to part 2 of Things Change…Things Never Change coming soon!