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Adapting; translating; knowing when to hold 'em, fold 'em, walk away or run
Tom Shay
Profits Plus Solutions
December 2016
Volume 18 Issue 1
It is an honor; and Kenny Rogers
This issue starts our 18th year of the e-ret@iler conversation. What an honor it is to write for the thousands of you who subscribe to our newsletter and have done so for years. Thank you for allowing me to do so.

This morning I heard the story of a coffee shop trying something different.

Ever experience walking into a coffee shop and finding nowhere to sit but noticing plenty of people who are sitting there, reading a book, doing homework or using a computer? How about standing to get a seat in a restaurant while noticing people sitting at a table having a leisurely conversation for long periods of time? I don't want to get into a conversation other than to say, that in the food industry this presents a problem as they can't "turn the table" to get to the next paying customer.

This coffee shop is trying something different. Instead of selling their coffee, they are now charging $6.00 per person to sit at a table. It is too early to tell if this is going to work, but we give them credit for trying to solve an issue. Experience shows that the more we copy what another business is doing, the less likely our idea will work. Customers look for what is new and different. Creativity reigns!

Along the note of solving an issue, with the Christmas season there are sure to be plenty of customers who seem to live to just create problems for your business. The question is going to be how much time and effort you are going to put forth to deal with these people or fix it so that they cannot mess with your business.

My suggestion is that you consider devoting more time to the customers who make your owning a small business such a pleasure. Experience says it is the customers that you will long remember after you leave your business.

The people who want to mess with you do a lot of it just for the game. And as for Kenny Rogers? He said this about problem customers:

You've got to know when to hold 'em
Know when to fold 'em
Know when to walk away
Know when to run.

Article of the Month - Changing what a store sells

Keeping in the same thought pattern as our example coffee shop, our article this month deals with the need for a business to look at updating the products offered. Our example business outlines many new service and product offerings that were added. It is an example of a business focusing on "who" the customer is instead of focusing "what" the product offering is.

Book of the Month - Dance in the End Zone

Too many business owners spend little or no time thinking about how they are going to get out of business when the opportunity or retirement comes. This book, written by Patrick Ungashick, uses sports examples to illustrate his thoughts for a business owner's plan to get out of the business. Even if you are just now planning to open a business, this is a book you should read.

Internet Tool for Your Business - Margin or Markup

Margin is not markup. The words are often used interchangeably, but there is a big difference. This calculator from the Profits Plus website will help you to understand the difference as well as see the formula to calculate each. Next time you are determining how much profit you are going to make in the sale of a product or service, be sure you have looked at margin and markup, and know which one you are using.

Staff Incentive for Your Business

Attitude matters. It has been my frequent experience to visit with a business owner of which the question is asked, "Are you enjoying being in business?"

While the answer is not always "yes", the problem I see is with those who say they are, but you can't tell by looking at their facial expression. If you want to have a positive attitude displayed by your staff, it has to begin with the first person walking in the door each day (most often the owner) and continuing throughout the day. Attitude matters.

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
Fax: (727) 898-3179