Examples of “how not to do things” seem to be running rampant these days. Is it due to the fluctuating Dow Jones? Global warming? Our relations with Russia? The fact that the Cubs finally upset the world’s rotational balance? The relative disappearance of Taylor Swift? Who knows? Who cares?
The fact remains that it has become crystal clear to me that a great number of people seem to have thrown their hands up in surrender in favor of becoming “ordinary.” Tell me truthfully, are you striving to become “ordinary?”
Now to many reading this column, being “ordinary” is not a bad thing. To me, it is the kiss of death. Who in their right mind wants to be “just another one?” Ordinary is a dime a dozen. Ordinary grows on trees. Ordinary is … ordinary.
The word “ordinary” lands right up there next to that four-letter word beginning with “f” that is quickly becoming acceptable in today’s fast-paced, “what have you done for me lately,” world. That word, as we all know, is “FINE.” How was your vacation? “Fine.” How did you like the movie? “It was fine.” Personally I can’t think of two words that are less attractive.
When I become “ordinary” and “fine” I want you to shoot me.
The other day, I decided I could use a little professional tutelage with my guitar playing skills. I picked up my first ax around 1965, and rested it against my desk around 1968. I have been postponing taking a few lessons for years, and I finally decided to pull the trigger (Some guitar players are a tad slower than others).
The other day I walked into my local music store, wallet at the ready, to sign up to learn a few new picking patterns and some tablature reading tactics. The teacher was in the midst of a lesson, so I was asked to call her later in the day to set up an appointment. This is where today’s lesson/reminder kicks in.
I wanted the service. I was prepared to pay for the service. I tracked down the service provider. I was eager, willing and able. Then came the phone call. I wasn’t sure if I was listening to a poorly-produced voice message or if the music instructor was, in fact, flat-lining right there on the phone for me to witness firsthand. My first impression was to hang up and dial 911 in an act of heroics.
Apparently, my decision to “get back into the game” was of little interest to this instructor, as she treated me like just another sticky note on her scheduling board. Thanks to her communication skills on the phone, I plan to “use” her for all she is worth to me, pay my bill, and head for the parking lot prepared to practice what I learned. The words relationship, fun, and repeat business never entered my mind.
Am I the only person today that realizes that my meal ticket originates from my satisfied clients? Doesn’t anybody understand that building and maintaining a business today requires hard work, personality, and a little enthusiasm now and then? I see it all the time; People going through the motions waiting for “I don’t know what.”
Please, please, please, don’t take prospects (or your customers) for granted. I will remind you for the umpteenth time, “Your client is my prospect.” And based on what I experience from day to day, if I was interested in your client, I could steal them away from you in a heartbeat. Don’t let that happen.
Give yourself a slap in the side of the face right now while picturing the scene from the movie Moon Struck where Cher slaps Nicholas Cage yelling, “Snap out of it.”
Mike presents a business-building webinar on the third Thursday of every month sponsored by AmaWaterways. To receive a complimentary invitation send Mike an email with the phrase “AmaWaterways” in the Subject Box. You will also receive a link to the recorded version.
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