Business is pretty straightforward.
You take a certain amount of human and physical capital...
add quality ideas and consistent energy...
and what naturally will come out is...
And lots of it.
Given this simple formula, why do so many businesses fail?
Or come far from reaching their full potential?
More to the point, why are so many otherwise extremely talented, hard-working, and ambitious entrepreneurs and executives unable to lead their businesses in a way that creates and distributes far more money for themselves and their companies?
This is arguably the most important question of business, because when it is answered, everything is possible - profits, healthy growth, and more value delivered to customers and stakeholders.
And when it is not, nothing is possible.
A business becomes a house of death: operating losses, contraction, dissolution, forlorn customers, scarred employees and wiped out shareholders.
In my 25 years of entrepreneurship and of advising and observing companies that have rose and fell on this spectrum of "Money Machine" success, ranging from those that started out as informal ideas and grew to become some of the most valuable companies in the world, to those with similar promise but instead that fell by the forgotten wayside, I have noted three fundamental factors that separate the former from the latter, the successful from the unsuccessful:
3. They Give their Love to the Money Machine not to its Outputs. I've yet to meet a businessman or woman who doesn’t want to make a lot of money.
And to this fundamental business want and desire, I say so what?
Because a) it is just so obvious b) nobody cares, especially not those that really matter - i.e. customers and c) the whole conversation around it distracts from the very hard, urgent, and important work always at hand.
As in the bloody tens of thousands of details, tasks, to-dos, and projects that in their sum is the totality of a great company.
The next product, the next software release, the re-designed organizational chart, the revived company culture, the reimagined brand, the new paths and channels of product and service distribution.
All of this and more is where the complete focus of the best and most effective executives goes, which then just crowds out any time or energy to think or worry about what it all means for “their” money!
2. They Treat their Customers as Honored Guests not as Gods. Healthy customer relationships start with a clear understanding of exactly the makeup of the customers our business is best suited to serve.
And we then strive to serve only these customers as the most honored and important guests that our business can ever have.
But our customers are not Gods. They are not omnipotent or always right.
Rather, upon them, as with guests to our home, are placed expectations of decorum and reciprocal respect.
And also like guests, they come and go. Both of their own volition and because more than a few of them we just don't want to invite into our homes anymore!
1. Building on the Above, They Have the “Proper” Relationship with Money. If the company is the loved and cared for money machine into which we invest our sacred life and business force...
...and if our customers so appreciate our “machine” that they give to it their ultimate sign of business love and respect, their money.
...then at this nexus exists the proper relationship between our business and our money.
We respect on the highest possible terms the money our customers spend and invest with us, and the profound trust and respect it represents.
We in turn know we have fully earned and deserve that love and respect.
Through all of the effort, intelligence, and soul we have poured into our businesses over the years.
And through our ongoing commitment to keep pouring more in, forever.
And from this zen and aligned place of customer respect, of self respect, of everlasting effort well...
...money and more money pours effortlessly out of our businesses for as long as the eye can see.
How cool is that?
Is Your Business Humming as a Successful Money Machine? Is all of your hard work yielding the bottom line results you want so bad? Are you able to turn your most important business initiatives into profits, fast and consistently?
If so, great and congratulations!
If not, complete this short questionnaire and give us a brief description of your current situation.
And we’ll reach out with our thoughts to help you.