It's All Unimportant Until It's You
I Met with a client a while back and got into a debate about what it was like to be a client of their firm. As I kept banging my head up against their story , I persuaded them to humor me and try something new….
I asked the President of the company to go outside and come in as if he was a client arriving for an appointment. Within 5 minutes of sitting in his own reception area he didn’t like how uncomfortable the chairs were, hated that he could see a bunch of old boxes in a cubicle down the hall, didn’t like how dark it was and we stopped right there.
Stupid exercise?...perhaps. Definitely simplistic. But it was a start.
It will all seem unimportant until it is you waiting in the reception area or stuck on hold.
What if you took some time away from trying to figure out what your clients want next and spend time every month experiencing how they actually see you today.
How many business owners take time to be anonymous clients of their own companies?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR(S)
Howard Mann is the founder of Brickyard Partners, a business strategy agency based in Portland, OR. Prior to founding Brickyard Partners in 2001, Mann owned a premier international logistics company with over 140 Million in revenue, six U.S. offices and a global network of over 40 agents worldwide.
As that business came under severe pressure from the previous economic downturn and industry consolidation, Howard lead the company out from those treacherous times by returning to the basics that make every business great and completing 6 acquisitions that re-imagined the business so it was highly attractive to buyers. Finding that “secret sauce” did not come easily but has fueled his purpose to help other business leaders to never have to go through what he endured. Through real world experience and those hard times in the “trenches” of business he has learned that it is not following the latest fad, copying competitors or adding complexity that makes a business truly great. His pragmatic approach and knowing what it feels like to sit in the CEO/Owner chair is what makes his work so different and effective.
In addition to his strategy, marketing and communications work, Mann coaches a select group of entrepreneurs, CEO's and business owners. His highly focused workshops and keynotes help executive teams take aggressive action to unlock the true potential of their organizations and build remarkable businesses that endure. In good times and bad. Online and off.
Howard is a sought after speaker both in the U.S. and around the world. He writes frequently on his blog about the importance of the basics and reconnecting to the passion that too often gets lost as businesses mature.