The San Francisco Chronicle reported the other day that if they can’t reduce expenses significantly, they will have to close or sell the business. Interesting choice of words. Why didn’t the ticker on CNN read, “The San Francisco Chronicle reported the other day that if they can’t increase sales significantly they will have to close or sell the business.”
A subtle yet critical distinction and more evidence that supports how desperately our thinking in every area needs to evolve from scarcity to abundance. Companies need to realign their focus on what really matters to drive growth and sustainability.
“Reduce Expenses or Increase Sales?” I’d go for the latter. After all, what you focus on grows. If every employee is more consumed with the survival based, scarcity and fear driven thinking that sounds like, “What can I do to cut costs?” then they are not simultaneously focusing on the more important question. That is, “What can I do to increase sales and the value delivered to our customers in order to increase retention?” Every person in your company needs to be mindful of what is needed to search out, identify and uncover new selling opportunities. But first, they need to be informed of this new line item in their job description, enrolled in it’s level of importance and then given the tools to execute on this. This is the priority today. Otherwise, the fundamental misallocation of effort which is a byproduct of this misaligned thinking within many organizations today will continue to leave more failed businesses in its wake.
Management must turn your binoculars around. Instead of looking at what you can take away to lighten your load, make each person an integral part of customer retention and acquisition. You’ll soon notice a positive change. Otherwise, the next load that is lightened can be you.
Here’s a quick survey that you can take and then check the poll results immediately. How has your company measured up? Are their efforts aligned with all of their good intentions? Are they allocating budget where it can have the greatest impact? Or, are they more caught up in searching for another place they can cut costs rather than focusing on what they need to do to boost sales? Take this poll and see how you compare against other companies. If you don’t see the poll below, go to the poll page here.