"When the sandpiper and the clam grapple, it is the fisherman that profits."
--- Chinese proverb
Sometimes profits from our labor flow in as they should. Other times, there is a constant struggle to find the fruit. We fail to see the benefits of all the hard work and scream, "Somebody show me the money!"
If your business is like most, there are highs and lows and striking a balance between the two can be tricky. It is often the high times that we depend upon to carry us through the low. The good news is that you can streamline the process so that you get more highs.
"The day of large profits is probably past. There may be room for further intensive, but not extensive, development of industry in the present area of civilization."
--- D. Carroll Wright, U.S. commissioner of labor. ---1885
The problem that some of us have is that we don't believe that we can get any more than we are already taking in. Our NMA (Negative Mental Attitude) as well as our lack of knowledge of our markets causes us to settle for mediocre when we could be enjoying a feast.
Changing our thought process is the first place to begin and in order to change our thoughts we need to change our business goals and plans. Putting bigger goals on paper produces larger results in the bank!
"Grant me profits only, grant me the joy of profit made, and see to it that I enjoy cheating the buyer!"
---Ovid (Publius Ovidius Naso)
As stated before in this newsletter, there are no short cuts to success. Integrity, fairness and honesty are still the best course to follow. It is not true that nice guys finish last. The "nice" guys or those working with integrity do produce generous profits. You must first have the foundational basics in place and then think BIG. Know that all of your homework: market analysis, business plan, bringing in the right people, etc, will pay off. Believe in your plan.
"Never be frightened to take a profit. Better in your pocket than theirs."
--- Michael Levy
Depending on what segment of the industry you are in and your demographics, there is almost always competition. Competition is good, in that it keeps the creative juices flowing and provides variety for customers. There is no reason to fear competition, but use it to make your products and services even better.
Study your market and gather the knowledge needed to increase your profits. This may mean that you might have to diversify your business and offer other products or you may need to change the way you currently position your current offerings. Learn another segment of the trade and don't be afraid to dream. Dream up more and better profit-producing strategies and don't worry about the business down the street. Pet rocks, Pokeman, Sesame Street, Wendy's, Virgin Records, and countless others all started with a dream.
"Profit and morality are a hard combination to beat."
--- Hubert H. Humphrey
Temptations to get involved with risky or unethical practices to increase the bottom line will always be out there. Flee from them. Don't even entertain them in your thoughts. Instead, look for the positives in your business and seek alternate means for providing the very best that you can for your customer base and beyond.
"I have found no greater satisfaction than achieving success through honest dealing and strict adherence to the view that, for you to gain, those you deal with should gain as well."
--- Alan Greenspan