One of Two Things

Posted by on August 21, 2013

A Monday Morning Memo for the Clients and Friends of Roy H Williams

Make no mistake about it, the economy is booming. Even the lazy have money. Money enough to waste. No one has any time to waste, though, not even the lazy. The lazy, like the industrious, demand quick service.

But where are they going to get it?

Employers are standing on every street corner, begging for good employees. Prospective employees interview them with a sneer; “Maybe I’ll come to work for you. Maybe I won’t.” Have you noticed how the service in most places has been slowly but steadily eroding in recent months?

I’ve seen this movie, or another one like it, and there are only two ways that it can end:

1: Either we have a recession and return to the mean days of “the survival of the fittest,” or
2: Quality, consistency, and speed of service will become far more important than price.

Let’s hope that it’s number 2.

Price has always been subject to the laws of supply and demand and the demand for service today is at an all-time high, while supply is at an all-time low. We, as a nation, have far too much to do and too little time. Money we have aplenty.

I don’t often make predictions in the Monday Morning Memo. But this one is unavoidable: If the economy continues hurtling recklessly forward, the great business fortunes of the future will be made by those who can attract, train, motivate and retain good employees. In a nation where everyone has money and few people really want to work, can you think of a commodity more rare than prompt and excellent service? Ads that shout “Guaranteed Lowest Prices” are already becoming passe’.

Will all this happen overnight? Of course not. Right now we are continuing in the delusion that we can demand low prices AND high service. We haven’t yet fully accepted that those days are over.

When money is tight, price is king. When money flows like water, service is king. If you have faith that our strong economy will continue, you must focus your energy on the development of excellent service because that’s where tomorrow’s big profits will be found. (But keep in mind that you can’t begin charging for excellent service until after you have been providing it for awhile and given the public a chance to develop a taste for it.) This is my advice to the optimist. If however, you’re a pessimist and believe that the economy will soon crash, then you should go forward as you always have: “Get all you can. Can all you get. Sit on the can. Poison the rest.”

Optimists! How are you going to attract great employees? Are you consciously investing in a corporate culture that will attract good people the way honey attracts bees? What is your plan for training, encouraging and rewarding these people? If your employee plan is no better than your competitor’s plan, I don’t predict great success for you.

Is your plan better than your competitors’?

Roy H Williams

# # #

The twelve lucky students of the first-ever Wizard Academy will be arriving in Austin tomorrow night and will be staying with us for three full days. (They have no idea the experience we have in store for them.) Roy, Pennie, Chris and The Gang.

Leave a Reply