This morning I received an e-mail from Steve Clauson, a well-known business development consultant, who spoke at our recent TopLine training workshop for new consultants. Steve and I usually talk sometimes twice a week bouncing ideas off each other that can help not only improve his business, but improve the businesses of other TopLine consultants. Steve is one of the most creative consultants I know and always delivers value to our discussion, to those he trains, and to the marketplace that hires him and pays him for his expertise and the results he produces for his clients.
In Steve’s e-mail, was a link to a video that talked about “entitlement” and gave the viewpoints of various college students and what they expected from potential employers or from the marketplace as a result of their educations. There were also comments from employers or business owners and what they expected from the people they hire to work for them. I found the video and the viewpoints expressed by both sides very interesting and revealing.
Capitalism and the free enterprise system is what keeps our economy moving. When businesses are successful, meaning they have more money left at the end of the month than what they spent to develop, purchase, and deliver the products and services they sell to their customers, as well as the operating expenses that it takes to run the business, they’re considered to be profitable. Profits are the name of the game in business.
When a business is profitable it can do things and provide benefits that business that are not profitable cannot do. For instance, profits can enable a business to hire top-level employees, pay its onboard employees higher wages, provide improved working environments and conditions, and offer better benefits. With profits a business can upgrade its equipment and production facilities, increase the number and/or the quality of the products or services it offers to its buyers, and enable the business to spend more on advertising and promotions so it can generate more clients and better quality clients.
When a business shows an increase in profits, or the money it has left after deducting all expenses and operating costs, the stockholders, shareholders, and owners of the business can be paid more for the investment or interest they have in the business enabling them to get a positive return on their investment and provide a better lifestyle for themselves and their families.
It’s a big risk for someone to give up a paycheck and perhaps position or seniority from a job and invest their life savings into a brand new business with the hope of bringing needed and desired value to a market, providing jobs, improving the economy, and enhancing their own personal lifestyle. When someone embarks on such a project they have every right to expect that if they do things right and what they have to offer is what the marketplace not only needs and wants, but is willing to pay for, that they should receive a fair price for their offering and a positive return on their investment.
Notice that I said if they “do things right. Among other things, that includes hiring the “right” people; people who rightfully believe they are “entitled” in the proper way. The “proper way” means that they “give an honest days work for an honest days pay.” In other words, they don’t believe they’re entitled to something (a job, a particular level of income, or certain working conditions) just because they have an education, have student loans to pay off, or that the workplace owes them a living. They believe they are entitled because they are able to provide value to the marketplace that is equal to, or greater than the amount of money their employer compensates them for the work they do.
The idea of entitlement “just because…” can make life miserable for a business owner and the employees and customers of the business, and can kill profits that could otherwise be used to provide more and better benefits and value for the employees of the business, it’s customers and clients, stockholders and investors, and for the person or persons (i.e., business owners) who have made the investment in the business in the first place.
TopLine consultants, such as Steve Clauson, help business owners find ways to improve the profits of their business owner clients by helping the businesses run more effectively and more efficiently by cutting costs and increasing revenues resulting in an increase in profits.
In reality, there are only two ways to grow the profits of a business: you can spend less, or you can make more. If the revenues of a business stay the same, but costs and expenses are reduced, the result is an increase in profits. And conversely, if the costs and expenses remain the same, but there is an increase in revenue, the result is also an increase in profits. Good consultants can oftentimes find ways to both decrease spending and increase revenues. And when that happens the profit increase can be exponential, business can be more fun for everyone, working conditions can improve, and the prospects of job continuation can improve.
So what about you? What kind of value are you providing the marketplace you serve? Are you being appreciated and compensated for what you contribute? If so, how can you enhance or improve it so your rewards are even greater? If not, what steps do you need to take to make it so, and when are you going to do something about it? There’s no future in just thinking about something… you have to take action. Your future is up to you. If there is anything I can help you with that will enable you to assess your situation and provide value that the marketplace wants, needs, and is looking for, please let me know. I’m more than willing to help in anyway I can.
As always, I am interested in your comments and thoughts.
Martin Howey, CEO
TopLine Business Solutions
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