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Turning Lemons Into Lemonade
Date: December 22, 2008



You will never be the perfect entrepreneur. No matter how hard you work to avoid catastrophes... at some point, disasters will happen. At times, you will look bad, and your reputation will be injured. But, that doesn't mean you or your company have to suffer long-term repercussions because of it.

Oswald Spengler, in his book the "Decline of the West", postulated something he called the "Challenge Response Theory", He found in his studies that every successful civilization grew and prospered, after they had successfully responded to a "Challenge" in an appropriate beneficial manner.  When society stopped doing this in an appropriate manner, the society declined.

Business is much the same way and so are our relationships. In fact studies have shown that the relationship actually grows stronger, when a "Challenge is handled in a beneficial manner for all concerned". I guess we could even go as far as saying that these difficulties and how we handle them are "Important" for our business growth.

Here are some steps for embracing your own humanity, and turning "bad" situations into incredible, marketing situations.

Step 1- Laugh at yourself and your mistakes. (Getting upset about the situation won't fix things. Look at this as an opportunity instead.)

Step 2- Fix the disaster, tenaciously and immediately. 

Step 3- Offer the injured customers or prospects even more than they expect. This step should be immediate. (If done properly, these individuals may become your biggest fans.) This recognition or compensation should also be disposable. You do not want to have your compensation or recognition package hanging on the wall as a constant reminder of the mistake.  Save those types of packages for the happy times. 

Step 4- Use the situation to fix your current systems. (Making a mistake is alright. Repeating that mistake can be devastating.)

Step 5- Freely share these experiences in marketing messages, blogs, webinars, or as a "reason" to have another sale or promotion.

People are generally more forgiving than they seem. If you are willing to "expose" your weaknesses, your contacts will feel your honesty and sincerity. The harder you try to be the "perfect" small business owner (and hide your errors), the more detached from your contacts you become. And, the more likely they are to mistrust you.

Enjoy your imperfections and learn to use them to your advantage! Use Oswald Spengler's "Challenge Response Theory".  I guess that is just a technical term for "Turning Lemons into Lemonade"!

 If you want to grow your business instead of just manage it, then you need Automated Follow-up Marketing software. Discover the difference


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Kevin Barrett

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