Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Author:  Doug McCann
Forthcoming Book:  "So You're A Nice Guy and Want To Be In Business"

Nice Guy In Business BlogOn Being Nice, Fair and Genuine

In last week's Monday Muse Notepad (January 8, 2018) I quoted Zig Ziglar and Maya Angelou on the importance of making people feel important, valuable and comforted.  These good deeds are decent and mutually uplifting in so many ways.  Mr. Ziglar also wrote, "Honesty and integrity are by far the most important assets of an entrepreneur."  I have an uncle, David McCann, who just passed away a little over a week ago, January 7, 2018.  He was also my Godfather.  He would have been 77 years old in July.  In his obituary notice, his family included the following, "The integrity of a good man ripples down through generations, making the world a better place."  What a wonderful statement to be truthfully and sincerely included in this memorial.  This is my uncle's legacy.  We are bestowed some wonderful lessons and values from our parents and extended family when they lead by example and impart such values.

Another uncle who passed away in October of 2015 had been in sales all his life and I remember what he said years ago, "Always tell the truth and you never have to remember what you said!"  I know that he spoke of this as a residual benefit of being honest, for his integrity was also very much intact.  If I were asked how I would want to be remembered, I might just say that I would be known as someone who played fair!

In the last few weeks I have been writing here on this blog and in the Monday Muse Notepad about the significance of being an honest and fair player and making people feel important and welcome.  These practiced sincerely and genuinely build customer and client loyalty.  The small mom and pop businesses of today are faced with the rapidly growing competition of big box stores and on line shopping.  Where the retail industry was once much more personal, today consumers are dealing in the ever growing faceless model.  We order on line, use ATM's, use self-service checkouts, shop in big box stores, all of which lack that personal customer contact and where real service is considered a frill.  We press keys on a telephone keypad rather than talk to a human.  We text and e-mail.  We seem to have become quite alienated in a world of industry and commerce where face-to-face dialogue and negotiation are the exception.

I would like to think that there is a great benefit to keeping business as personal as possible.  Customers and clientele still like to know they are welcomed and considered important to the business.  They are pleased to be called by their name and that their patronage and loyalty to the business have not gone unnoticed.  To get back to that part about integrity rippling down through generations, similarly, genuine personal service is an attribute that builds longevity and customer loyalty which in turn results in repeat and steady business for years and in some cases even generations to follow.