As summer officially comes to a close I wanted to squeeze in this great guest post from Tom Asacker which I saw on his fantastic blog Opportunity Screams. I think it absolutely hits the nail on the head: We need more LOVE in business…
Have you noticed how quiet it is? The phones aren’t ringing. Networkers have stopped networking. Bloggers aren’t blogging. Spammers have even cut back on spamming. The last time I sensed this type of collective pause was in the weeks following 9/11. But this time is different. Our leaders are acting confused, and the forecast for the foreseeable future looks bleak.
For some businesses, the current economic slowdown will be their undoing. For others, it will be the vampire that sucks the lifeblood from the veins of their organizations and turns them into the living dead. I’ve seen it more times than I care to remember: smart people sitting on their hands waiting for the “right” information, or for new marching orders, while their bus sinks slowly into the mud.
Inevitably, some companies will panic and push the accelerator to the floor, which will sink them even deeper and create a much bigger mess. Most, however, will simply go about their work, doodling on foggy windows while praying to preserve their dry seats and myopic views. But there is another option, and that’s to rethink your organizational purpose and passion.
If you study the marketplace long enough, you’ll discover a very simple, yet powerful framework that demystifies the complexities of our topsy-turvy business world and points the way to happiness and growth. In fact, it’s so straightforward that most people dismiss it as fluff with no real strategic import. And nothing could be further from the truth. Here’s how it works:
2. Love who you do it for (Interest); and
3. Love the process of keeping #1 and #2 connected (Engagement)
If you have a problem associating the word “love” with business, then simply substitute the words “care deeply about” or “a passion for.” This deep caring is the key to sustained marketplace success in today’s age of choice, complexity and change: I have no doubt about it. It also keeps you and your people engaged and optimistic, especially when times get tough.
Well, times are tough. So let’s run a little experiment: We’ll call it, Our Summer of Love 2011. For the next 11 weeks, let’s spread our love. Let’s reach out to our audiences and give back. If you operate a popular website, spring for free advertising. A car dealer? Call some customers and have them stop by for a free car wash. A bank? Grab some ad dollars and run a free, small business seminar for your clients. You get the idea. No obligation. No pitch. Nothing . . . but love.
And what will happen? Something positive and insightful, I can assure you. For as Krishnamurti made clear, “The moment you have in your heart this extraordinary thing called love and feel the depth, the delight, the ecstasy of it, you will discover that for you the world is transformed.”
You can thank me later.
Well Tom, I’d like to thank you right now… Thank You, this is fantastic advice. Since I am getting this article up at the very end of Summer let’s, take Tom’s idea and stretch it into the “Winter of even more LOVE!!” This Fall take a little time to fall even deeper in love with your customers. Give them something free, help them fix a problem for no additional charge, go out of your way to do something special, caring and loving for them. Send a referral to three or four other businesses that you admire. Make a challenge within your company to completely amaze and delight your customers with the best service you have ever delivered between now and Christmas.
Here is my promise to you (it is the philosophy I have built my entire business career on): “If you just help enough other people get what they need… You will get everything you need.” (I stole that from Zig Ziglar, but he told me that it was OK). Live life with an abundance mentality, run your company with an abundance mentality… give, give, give and don’t worry about what you will get in return. Now I’m not saying give away the store, give everything away for free, let people walk in and just help themselves to cash right out of the register — what I am saying is find dozens and dozens of little ways to add more value, show more care, give more love.
I assure you, as one of America’s top 100 business thought leaders (tongue firmly in cheek) that I will give you a 100 percent money-back guarantee that expressing dramatically more love in your business will bring you dramatically more profits. Yes, it IS that awesomely simple.
I very much look forward to your feedback and comments. Love, John