Results. Heroes. Ego.
Your business doesn’t have to deliver all three, but in 2013 you need to give them at least one. And to be honest, if Results is all you’ve got to offer, you better deliver Ego or Heroism as well.
Every single one of your customers wants Results. A return on their investment in you. A problem solved. Sales growth. An unclogged pipe. A delicious meal. This is where every business begins their day, and if you’re going to survive until tomorrow, this is where every small business ends it. Delivering Results a good start, but it’s expected.
Heroes in business are more difficult to measure, but leave a more compelling impression. This is the good stuff that gets shared. Shattering your customers’ expectations. Throwing in floor mats with a new car purchase. Returning a call after hours or on the weekend. Not just going the extra mile, but working harder for your customer than they are willing to work for themselves (Kansas City Hospice and Palliative Care comes to mind). Heroism can take many forms, but it always makes a lasting connection and leaves a great impression.
The third thing Kansas City consumers want is to have their ego stroked. Who doesn’t? More typically the playground of upscale companies, every business can profit from making their customers the center of the universe. Sometimes it can be as simple as always delivering a smile. Sometimes it’s just enough to be associated with your company that strokes the ego of your customers (in Kansas City think Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts or Aristrocrat Motors). Ego can come in many forms, but it’s always compelling, and memorable.
Most small businesses will focus their attention and efforts on delivering Results. That’s an important, but a basic goal. If you really want your company to roar in 2013, commit to delivering Heroes or Ego or both as well.