What's Your Business Building Strategy for 2018? Consider This: Character Eats Strategy for Lunc


There is much to be learned from online discussions. To some extent, forums can reflect the pulse of our industry. One interesting post was from a supplier who was bemoaning that a distributor had been excessively following up on an order.

Complaints are all over online forums posted by both distributors and suppliers. A successful independent distributor I know was sharing his horror stories. One had to do with approving an acknowledgment, then approving a proof, followed by a request days later to approve another confirmation WITHIN ONE HOUR, or the event “in hands” date would be missed. Why the rush when this had already been approved? If a THIRD approval is required, why not allow a reasonable amount of time…like 24 hours?

In another case, a distributor received five large boxes for an event that should have gone to New York. He is in California. This was a shipping mistake that proved to be costly for everyone. This distributor went the extra mile taking his time to drive the boxes back to the supplier who was local for him. As the distributor related the story, he noted there was no way the product would be there for the event in New York. For event orders in our industry, failure is not an option. This was a fail.

It seems this kind of thing occurs more often than we think. Going back to the supplier who bemoaned the follow-up efforts of a distributor, the reason that happened is that distributors have been let down by suppliers and are conditioned to mistakes happening.

This got me thinking about what makes some companies better than others? What role does company culture and values play in a successful business? How does having a desire to be of service, effective management and integrity impact a company’s bottom line? This, of course, applies to distributors and suppliers.

Many companies have advertising and marketing strategies that they feel will bring them the success they desire, but consider this: Character Eats Strategy for Lunch.

Why should or would anyone want to do business with you? Why would someone choose one distributor or supplier over another? Everyone, including our online friends sell the same types of products.

In an industry driven by product and price, does company culture and character count? Would you prefer to do business with a company that has customer service people who care and deliver products correctly, on time? Oh...of course, you want to deal with crappy companies who don't care, deliver bad products and miss deadlines...right?

Who are these good companies? There are many of course, but FreePromoTips has been supported by a few good suppliers who catch the vision of what we are doing. We would like to share their comments and encourage you to take a look at their lines. As an ongoing feature, we are going to share supplier’s thoughts on company culture and values.

In this commentary, we feature Charley Johnson, VP for HandStands thoughts on this topic. We’ll continue to share these comments in words and video from companies with character.

“Company culture and values, where do you begin? How many cliché quotes can you string together from a leader of a company that talks the talk but their actions don’t back it up?

As the world becomes more stressful, it makes life at home and work more stressful; they are all connected with each other. More companies are almost being forced to create a culture and atmosphere at work that helps with employee retention and helps people find some peace where they spend most of their waking hours.

We all know the examples of these extremely profitable tech companies like Google showing us how to create that culture where people never want to leave, but how do you do that as a small company who doesn’t have endless resources?

Another question to be asked, is it the culture that creates good employees, or hiring good people who become employees who then create the culture you are looking for? Are the “Best Places to Work” surveys unbiased enough with employees from all levels of the company chiming in to show us the truth behind a company culture?

Does a good culture ensure success as a company? Does the culture of the company start at the top or can employees create the culture to help the leaders of the company take notice that it’s worth it to spend more time and money on creating a better workplace?

We see many articles speaking about these great companies with great cultures but what about the other 99% that don’t get coverage? Is their culture terrible or just normal? With trying to create a better culture, are we setting ourselves up to fail with leaders who are going against who they really are?

With the increasing instability of the world right now, has the bottom line become more of a focus than ever before, all the while companies speak of a better culture simply to distract their employees from what’s really going on?

Depending on how you feel after asking yourself all these questions, it will be a good indicator of how you see the importance of creating a work environment that benefits employee’s inner peace and happiness in all aspects of their lives. Do you care, or don’t you? There is no right or wrong with how you answer.”

When we talk about company culture and values, for those who don’t know about FreePromoTips, here’s a brief overview. Since 2005, FreePromoTips has been a useful resource for distributors and suppliers. We have become a PPAI Award Winning industry resource by sharing relevant, business-building content with our large online and e-mail community in different ways.

The Holiday Season, a New Year and the January Trade Shows, give us all a chance to evaluate our priorities, our business and who we want to do business with.

For those attending the ASI Show in Orlando, or the PPAI Expo in Las Vegas, we have put together a list of our supporting suppliers. Visit their booths and learn about their line. For those not able to attend, we have provided web links for you.

I'll be at both these shows, and perhaps our paths will cross. I'm looking forward to January!

As we wrap up 2017, we would like to wish you a blessed Holiday Season and awesome New Year.

SnugZ USA

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #1206 PPAI Expo Booth #4550, 4551

Fields Manufacturing - American Greenwood – Better Life Line

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #1032 PPAI Expo Booth #6121

Webb Company

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #321 PPAI Expo Booth #1825

Fey Industries - MiLine - Magna-Tel

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #400 PPAI Expo Booth #3740

The Magnet Group

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #1213 PPAI Expo Booth #5031

HandStands

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #1942 PPAI Expo Booth #3663

Symbio

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #N/A PPAI Expo Booth #6554

Warwick

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #1150 PPAI Expo Booth #3450

Southern Plus

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #1943 PPAI Expo Booth #3077

KutMaster

ASI Show Orlando: Booth #1645 PPAI Expo Booth #N/A

Maple Ridge Farms ASI Show Orlando: Booth #N/A PPAI Expo Booth #5855


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