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Talking about the untalkable; what are you saying about the elections?
Tom Shay
Profits Plus Solutions
August 2016
Volume 17 Issue 9
Talking about what perhaps we should not talk about

People in your community listen to what you say. This is because you have a high visibility within the community. This high visibility can be helpful when you want to tell people about the efforts you support within the community. It could be the high school, youth sports leagues, or any number of non-profit organizations. For my wife and I, it is an organization called Faith House Florida. We support it because we believe in the efforts this organization makes to help individuals rejoin society.

Hopefully, when people hear you supporting an organization they will see you as a voice of authority and consider adding their support. And the neat part is that people are going to admire you for your efforts; there is not a lot of chance that people will scorn you because of your stance.

Then we have the other side of the issue. Here in the United States we are in a very heated political situation; from the office of president through Congress and into local elections.

You can see this on Facebook; you can see it in the traditional media, along with yard signs, bumper stickers, and most any form of communication that speaks to others.

I cannot offer guidance on this issue; nor should I make any attempt to do so. The advisory for this month is simply a word of caution. Showing your personal feelings in the political arena, even in the most polite of ways, can have a cost to you and your business. Whatever you decide, do so carefully.

What if? - Article of the Month

It is a hot August most everywhere. The article of the month is about cutting grass; but not from the perspective of you cutting your grass. Instead it is from the perspective of the business that would service your lawn mower. After all, when does your lawn mower break down? When the grass is high, half-way cut, and company coming for dinner.

The August article gives some ideas of how we can create a higher perceived value at a lower cost to our business. And with a higher perceived value, you can have a higher price for your service.

The concept is not just for lawn mowers; and it is not just for businesses that provide a service. Everything about our small business is about higher perceived value.

Leadership and Self Deception - Book of the Month

The book suggestion for August is unique in that it is authored by The Arbinger Institute, as compared to being written by an individual. The selection of the book was based on a suggestion as well as the cover notes.

As a small business owner, you could say that you have been called to greatness. You are a leader within your community. My experience has been that books like this, much like Originals, Best Practices are Stupid, and Crazy is a Compliment, cause the reader to take an additional look at themselves.

We should constantly challenge ourselves. That excitement and drive that was present when we first started our business; is it still there? Is it growing?

Individual item margin - Internet Tool for Your Business
Several times in the past couple of weeks I have stressed the difference in margin and markup. Our tool for August is demonstrating how you calculate the margin. As an example, if a buyer stated they wanted a 44% margin for an item, this calculator will show the steps necessary to get that margin (and not calculate the markup).
Staff Incentive for Your Business

Writing the newsletter for August, I am also responding to a reader's question about the incentive plan they have in their business. It could be said that the incentives are working in that sales are increasing as are profits. However, margins are decreasing.

The problem is that the employees have discovered a way to beat the system; they are driving sales while sacrificing margins. The increase in profits does not match the increase in sales.

Incentives are good only if they are good for everyone; business, employee and customer. Incentives should be created to drive increases to the bottom line. They cannot take advantage of the customer. Unless everyone wins, nobody wins.

We want to recognize A Carrot A Day by Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton, whose book provides the basis for each month's incentive idea.

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Profits Plus Solutions, Inc.
PO Box 1577
St. Petersburg, Fl 33731
(727) 464-2182
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