Customer Success is The Mission; Celebrated Partnership is The Goal® is more than a slogan. It is a deep belief and symbolic attitude yet simple statement of a pursuit to help my customers thrive and prosper with the profit opportunities I offer them (Encouragement/Support/products/business development concepts). By profit I mean more than dollars and cents. Profit means net gain, higher than expected value and benefit realized by the customer. An Investment in their success with my product or business development concept vs. cost of goods.
I began my quest for Celebrated Partnership October 2, 1965, my 17th birthday. I was a senior at Shelby County HS in Columbiana, Al. My friends were forming bands because of the British Invasion of some fantastic bands. Because of my relationship with Mr. Ed Phipps and Phipps Piano Company in Birmingham, Alabama I would load up the kids in my 1955 Chevy Bel-Air and take them to see Mr. Phipps. He was selling VOX Amps and other brands used by the British bands. It became a weekly event and Mr. Phipps offered me a part-time job on the weekends. I have enjoyed every moment of my various career assignments since that day in 1965.
I have studied the art of sales, read many books on selling, and attended many seminars and personal conferences regarding the art of selling. All of this information on selling led me to gain knowledge about the need to be customer focused or customer centric versus just making sales. I am frequently concerned about we sales types not being “customer centric.” The real challenge is not coming up with an idea to close the sale that has never been thought of before – BUT to be willing to DO something that is not being done to help our customers succeed. Brian Tracy once said you can become wealthy by simply doing something 10% better than what is being done now. And then there is this quotation from Mark Twain: ”There is no such thing as a new idea. It is impossible. We just take a lot of old ideas and put them into a sort of mental kaleidoscope. We give them a turn, and they create new and curious combinations. We keep turning making new patterns, but they are the same old pieces of glass that have seen in use throughout all the years.” – Mark Twain Jim Rohn says just improving yesterday’s processes by 1% will be 100% improvement in 100 days.
Sometimes I over think customer success. I am guilty of attempting to over intellectualize simple stuff. My soon to be published book is based on many years of selling experience. 6 years B2C from 1965 to 1971 and the rest in B2B field experience interfacing with customers of different sizes, shapes and categories. Frankly, I do not know what is original to me vs. what I learned by listening and reading. I do my best to give proper attribution if I remember the author, but most of the authors I’ve read and listened to got their ‘stuff’ from others as well. I share my thoughts out of a desire to help my sales brothers and sisters in the business-to-business sales channel to thrive and prosper, to be successful in their businesses. My experiences, ideas and concepts have worked well for me in the B2B environment. If only 1 idea or concept helps your succeed then mission accomplished.
My book will never be listed, as an academic must read. No deep research to write in footnotes. My writing comes from my years of experience and desire to help my customer’s succeed with the profit opportunities I offer. Most sales folks I have met or had the pleasure of leading, do not know their true value to their customers. Celebrated Partnership status is a higher calling than just ‘vendor’ status. Celebrated Partnership status means the customer appreciates the relationship we have built to help them thrive and prosper via our profit opportunities. Remember, profit opportunities transcend dollars and cents in favor of net gain of strong relationships; spiritual, personal and business. Believe it or not there are those that feel their VALUE is best earned by taking advantage of or manipulating customers for the sake of ‘making the month.’. This type of ‘vendor’ relationship is merely tolerated by the customer. We can temporarily move forward with a just make the sale mindset or we can create long term solutions to earn Celebrate Partnership status by providing above average VALUE and contribution to our customers (current and probable) to help them succeed. I am where I am in business because of the opportunities I said YES to. I also said NO to a lot of opportunities because I lacked confidence and thought the ‘financial’ upside was too difficult to achieve or I did not believe the product represented net gain or profit opportunity for the customer. I will never know if the NO’s were right or wrong, but they were my decisions and I own the outcome good, bad or neutral. I am where I am in life because of of my previous decisions; therefore I am having the time of my life. I am happy because I know my customers are happy (well, 98% of them 😉 ) because of my Customer Success is The Mission; Celebrated Partnership is The Goal™ philosophy.
I am not rich or wealthy by Wall Street standards, but I am wealthy in blessings of family, friends and deep business relationships, therefore I have learned not to worry about money. I learned long ago that the money will come when I develop myself to add more value to others than my friendly competitors. The law of magnetism really works, We attract who we are, NOT what we want. I learned long ago to be the type of person customers want to do business with and the opportunities and money will come. An abundance mindset vs. need (real or implied) mindset. All of us have a magnetic field. Think about it! What is the molecular makeup of your magnetic field? We’re all magnetic. Our business entities are magnetic. Are you attracting customers because they are attracted to your life’s philosophy? Does your business attract the type of customer that knows without a doubt they profit from the business relationship? I truly believe people are not loyal to products or services. I truly believe people are loyal to people and their businesses until trust is broken or the relationship is taken for granted.
Customer Success is My fuel to S.O.A.R.R.™(Serving Others thru Actions & Relationships, Repeat)