What separates an average business from an outstanding one? What causes a majority of businesses to close as opposed to the ones that celebrate 5-10-15+ year anniversaries?
The answer is DRIVE!
Drive is the answer for small business owners, large corporations looking to expand, entrepreneurs and even stay at home mom's looking for a side hustle. For anyone that is associated with any type of business whatsoever, even the customer service reps. Even though drive is the secret ingredient for anyone's level of success, I respectfully want to send out this blog today to help my fellow business owners out in the world.
If you are familiar with author and real estate expert, Grant Cardone, he refers to someone's self motivation (or drive) as his "10X Rule." The 10X Rule is comprised of 2 factors that you need both of to reach ultimate success; your personal effort you put into your goals as well as your mindset and how self-confident you are in yourself.
This drive or "10X" mentality is what a large majority of business owners lack. You might love what you do. You might be incredibly knowledgable about whatever field you are in. You might have every degree, credential, and license known to mankind. But, without day to day DRIVE, you will never succeed in the long run.
This has been a "secret" (as some business tycoons would call it) that I've known about for quite some time. I've always known there are a large amount of businesses that lack in this category but it became eerily apparent to me this morning.
This morning, after coming to the realization that my car was running very poorly and I wasn't able to drive to work, I quickly sought out an auto mechanic that could help me. Here are the results of my search...
Result: Straight to voicemail without a call back.
Result: No answer, eventually would get a call back 6 hours later.
Result: Answered phone quickly but was all booked up the next 24 hours.
Result: Answered phone quickly but told me his shop had 7 cars before me and was understaffed.
Result: No answer, returned my call 3 hours later.
Result: Answered me quickly and gave me a check list to go over before he could check my car after 4pm.
I also posted a "In Search Of..." ad on Facebook and didn't receive a response until over an hour later. It wasn't until I made a personal post on FB when I received a quick response back from a small business owner and mutual friend in my hometown. He was quick with his responses and even went out of his way to come to my house and run a diagnostic on my vehicle before determining what the problem was. I've ran into outstanding customer service before but I wasn't blown away until my new friend told me that the diagnostic scan was completely free, he wouldn't even let me cover his gas to come to my home! All he asked for was a beer and a great review to my circle of influence. WOW!
Now, to the typical business owner, this would be considered extremely foolish and a loss of income towards the business. To the successful, this was brilliant....why? Now, this mechanic has a customer for life WHILE reaching a much larger audience than just that one customer (me.) He could've charged me for the quick fix and I would've been on my way, even while possibly still offering a solid review to him and his company. But, he chose to go beyond expectations and what was required. He sacrificed the immediate short term gain for the long term patient payoff. One route might've given him one new customer while the other gives him a loyal friend (and customer) with a large network of other individuals that will be offered his services when asked. This is a brilliant move that only the truly successful individuals consistently do. It not only requires patience but a large amount of faith to know that the long term payoff will come, not only to you but to your brand as well.
Any one of these 6+ businesses could've had my service today but only 1 did. The immediate reason is response time. Yes, there are other factors that go into response time (it doesn't mean every business is poor because they take a moment to get back to you) but generally speaking, why does 1 business get an outstanding review and continued success while many struggle? As a fellow business owner, it comes down to being driven enough to go after what you want. If you truly seek success in your field, you have to be driven and confident enough in yourself to attack your market!
Quick response times, offering outstanding service, going beyond your job description and ultimately, treating others the way you would like to be treated will lead to your growth in business. Many individuals start a business with the mindset that business will just come to them automatically if they have a store front or even a heavy promotional campaign on social media. That is never guaranteed! Never...EVER, wait on individuals to come to you but seek out individuals that are in need of your services and could benefit from them. Message potential clients directly if need be, if you have down time on your work load, make the most of it! Never get complacent and never get comfortable. Constantly be aware of where your company can improve and try to stand out beyond your competition.
Edit: At the time of writing this article, I asked a close friend to run a survey for me and test out how quickly my own competition in the Personal Training market got back to a potential client. After contacting 3 large companies that offer PT services in our area, only 1 have reached back out to my friend (after almost 24 hours), if there are updates regarding this survey, I'll make sure to post them.