Thought for the day: Years and years ago a very good friend of mine and business genius gave me an interesting piece of advice that's stuck with me the rest of my life. Not because it sounds good, but because I've seen it work, and it never, ever seen it fail. What is that piece of advice? Well, he once told me that when running a business, the key to success isn't the product, it isn't the vision, it isn't the money or the market or any of that. While those are important elements and create the groundwork for what your company will do and sell, the key most important thing to follow throughout the entire process is three simple steps.
1. Put your employees first. Always. Take care of them before you take care of anything else.
2. Put your customers second. Don't neglect them, but also don't put them ahead of your employees.
3. If you follow the first two rigorously in the exact order presented, everything else, your profits, your business, etc will all take care of themselves.
The reasons behind this odd sort of business plan, which is really business 101 reduced and condensed down to its simplest form, is that it takes advantage of both human nature, and in some ways the very nature of the universe. How so? Well, consider this. Your employees are an extension of yourself. They interact with your customers from day to day far more than you do. As some have said, they live in the trenches while you live in the gilded castle. Being in that position they not only see more than you do, they also have to react to and resolve more than you do.
So they are the grease that keeps the wheels rolling. If they're not happy, you can bet the customers won't be, and if they're not happy, they'll go elsewhere. However, if your employees are happy, they'll bend over backwards for you and make sure your customers are happy, and if your customers are happy they'll make sure to continue doing business with you. And they will recommend others to do so as well, which means you'll get plenty of work, and you won't have to worry about profits, the bottom line, etc beyond the normal paperwork part of things. So by following that simple order of priorities, you will never have to worry about your business failing or suffering loss, ever, save only for events (such as tornado, flood, fire, etc) that are beyond your control.
In the same way we should approach our relationship with Jesus and God. Some call this the "Joy" principle. IE, we put Jesus First and Foremost above all others and all things. Then, with whatever we have left over we put others second in our lives leaving us in very last place on the list. And if we follow this plan to the letter, just like the system my friend showed me for business, everything else will take care of itself. Everything. Jesus will see to that. So just remember that as you go about your day today.