October 29/November 5, 2018: Volume 34, Issue 10
By Scott Perron
Soon to be 53, I find myself in the third season of my “business career.” In the first 15 years I was an independent retailer, followed by four years on the corporate side of the industry. In this latest round we have two business models: one focusing on supplying professional customers, while the other works on the shop-at-home/business space.
During these last 20-plus years, I have come in contact with countless business owners, executives and managers. Following some good advice I received at a very young age, I take the time to question those who are much more successful in the hopes they can shine some light on the proper methods of building our business.
It is for that reason, hard work and surrounding myself with people who are much better than me, that we have been successful in our own right. Even now I have three out-of-state business mentors that have helped guide me on my newest journey, and for that I am eternally grateful. I encourage all retailers to reach out to your potential advisors and take heed to the wisdom they may impart.
That being said, I want to draw attention to those who single-handedly take the credit for the success they have achieved in business. As a young man, I was guilty of that same negative attribute and throughout my career I have met many who love to beat their chest while having no real success to back up their self-promotional tendencies.
Ego and arrogance have no place in business if you really want to duplicate success. Those who make themselves the center of attention in business will find out later that they have nothing to sell, while those who look to build a legacy can overcome almost any obstacle and silence any competitor with actions vs. words.
The DNA of a business is a very simple ideology, which states that its true function is to serve its clients, employees and shareholders. Regardless of leadership, ownership or who screams the loudest, we should all be beholden to the business. This is true even when it requires firing a close relative, friend or employee to ensure its success long term.
While I continue to study the things I do not know on a daily basis, research suggests the leadership of any company usually has a limited skill set, which causes periodic and much-needed change in order for the business to thrive. For example, companies that achieve $5 million or $10 million in revenue often cannot grow to $25 million without a change in leadership. Furthermore, those at that level often require yet another change when reaching for a new plateau.
In a recent column I cited an article written by entrepreneur Daymond John outlining his five secrets to building a successful company by hiring correctly (promote drive, free voice, “intrapreneurs,” motivation and incentives). Although simple in its wording, those attributes are difficult to execute and are the responsibility of any company’s leadership in order to propel it forward.
Although some of you may disagree with my comments, we often let emotions, relationships and prior promises dictate our future actions. However, the reality is doing anything other than what is good for your business can lead to its destruction.
I get great enjoyment out of speaking with young people who are eager to learn and willing to work toward a successful career or ownership in business. I find myself becoming more like the people who have helped me along my journey, and I am happy to pay it forward.
Scott Perron is the president of 24-7 Floors and Floor4Pros based in Sarasota, Fla. He is also an industry trainer and motivational speaker. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or 860.250.1733.