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Why Companies Fail, and Why They Succeed

Over the past several years I have observed something when looking at the most and least effective companies in the USA, and each grouping has something in common that needs to be discussed. This is far from the only thing they have in common, but this has been critical in landing them where they are now.
Why Companies Fail
Let’s look at a recent casualty in the business world, Toys R Us. In what once was the leading toy company in the world, a strange and disappointing pattern emerged, which led them down their path to bankruptcy. What was this pattern? It was the shunning of all new trends, and the inability to move successfully with the emerging technology. You see, technology scares, some, but in long term successful companies, you see them lead the change that they are uncomfortable with by hiring someone who can do it for them. Toys R Us refused to move with the eCommerce trend. They failed to move appropriately with the mobile trend. As a result, they failed as a company when these two items produced powerhouses like Amazon and Walmart.
Why Companies Succeed
We could look at Apple or Amazon, but those industry Goliaths are not what we want to hone in one today. Instead, let’s look at a lesser known company that is exploding in their growth, and on the verge of their own Goliath like stature. Dropbox, which isn’t a NEW company per se, has been doing all the right things for some time now. They have changed with the trends. They have been on the cutting edge of cloud technology since it was a hard to understand concept for, well…almost anyone who wasn’t an IT professional. They are now putting lots of capital into their global enterprise sales and channel partnerships, which is going to set them up to be even bigger as more and more companies move all of their data 100% to the cloud.
So why is it that many companies succeed, and many fail? What one strand binds them all together? It is either the lack of willingness, or the presence of willingness to adapt successfully to change. You either move with change, or you end up as a case study about what a company “should have done”.
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Are you client-centric, or you-centric? You may be surprised!

Over the last several years it has been really amazing to have the chance to implement what has been learned from those around us. This company has allowed us the opportunity to chat with business leaders, both local and national. What we’ve seen is this; not everyone who thinks they are focused on their customers actually is! Here are 4 questions that we ask ourselves at GEN-Y that have enabled us to constantly be evaluating whether or not our stakeholders are being given the service they deserve! 

  1. Are we resting on past laurels, or are we making our clients day EVERY day?
  2. When we say no to a client, are we offering a solution, or just putting up a wall?
  3. Are we keeping in mind that everyone has had situations and interactions before we speak with them, and those have shaped their mindset and attitude, and then treating them with the grace that we would like to have offered to us?
  4. Are we attempting to make every situation fit into a cookie cutter mold, or are we looking at the circumstances and adjusting our mindset and policy to create a wow experience for our customers and dealers? 

You see, it isn’t just about a one time “good deed” in today’s world. To build loyalty to your brand, you must be constantly keeping your valuable clients’ needs at the center of what you do, because without them, you’re simply selling a product, not building a company.