"You are what you eat," the phrase goes. While the notion that you need to stay fit and keep healthy has been around for awhile, that phrase itself didn’t enter he American consciousness until 1942, when Dr. Victor Hugo Lindlahr published his book You Are What You Eat: how to win and and keep health with diet.
So what does this have to do with you as a business owner? If you’re in the service business, the equivalent thing to say would be that you are your client list. You can’t be all things to all people, and maybe–-just maybe--you don’t need to accept just anyone as a client. Why not work with people who you enjoy, are not toxic, and reflect your values. You’ll be more effective and have a better quality of life. And so will your employees which be reflected in staff morale.
How do I know? Because I recently fired a client who committed the cardinal sin: abusive treatment of my staff. The income didn't matter. The prestigious nature of the client didn’t matter. Because I learned long before the MasterCard commercials: staff morale, priceless!
It’s easier said than done, of course, particularly in this economy. But stop and think about it. What’s on your plate?
Jerry Kalish is founder and President of National Benefit Services, Inc., a Chicago-based employee benefit consulting and administrative firm that serves private-held companies, publicly traded companies, and public sector employers. He blogs at The Retirement Plan Blog and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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