What’s my secret to prosperity?
“What’s your secret?” he asked me in an exasperated tone. “How is it that in a declining economy your business is growing, yet I keep losing my associates and customers?”
On the surface, it seems like such a simple inquiry, yet it is not. I’ve been asked this question several times this year by clients and other agency owners. Like many things in life, it’s what I call a “simple complexity”. As a society, we’ve abandoned a few very basic principles which America’s founding Fathers knew but somehow as a country we’ve forgotten. As a people, we have become the land of the drive thru, fast delivery, the ten second sound bite, and ten secrets to instant anything. Of course, we can’t forget the ever-popular “Can’t I just take a pill?” to cure obesity and other diseases of affluence. We have become so focused on material things and social status that we’ve lost sight of what I call “the fundamentals.”
Success in anything cannot be solely dependent on ten secrets. If one wishes to be successful, one must begin with character. Do you know what we call those who have charm and personality but no character?
A: Politicians or used car salesmen!
For many decades we have focused on what is called the personality ethic as a guiding principle. One should project or pretend to be who they are until the change magically occurs. I often call it success through living a lie. Yes, I’m sure it works for about 1/3 of you; however, so will a sugar pill.
In actuality, the aforementioned character ethic is about being truthful, not only to yourself but to other basic principles as well. The principles by which I govern my business and my life in general are simple: Present my business and its associates in only the light of truth, and never in the darkness of deception. Be honest and truthful with your clientsas much as possible. Therefore, when you say, “The sky is blue”, they don’t feel the need to open a window and check. If you make a deal, honor it to the best of your ability. In short, stand for what you believe in and treat people with honor, respect, and above all, integrity. When your customers come to know you as the guy who can be trusted over the other guy who can’t, the smart ones will return. I have no concerns regarding my fees simply because I know for a fact that my clients will inevitably be rewarded with my best effort. Granted, sometimes my best is not good enough for reasons beyond my control; however, outside of that, I do my best. I am fully aware that when I fail, I am accountable.
I’ve often told those I’ve mentored time and time again, “Your escort agency or business is a direct reflection of you. If you don’t have your mental and spiritual houses in order, don’t expect that your business will either. As a rule, if your personal life is a drama-ridden disaster, that will be reflected in each of your business relationships. Conversely, there are people who have no personal lives but who are great successes in business and earn lots of money; however, they are likely lacking in anything remotely profound.
Returning now to the gentleman mentioned in the first paragraph, I felt these were the two central problems of why his business was backsliding. His great smile couldn’t make up for the fact that he had on many occasions broken faith with his customers. The problem with always going for the quick buck is that you’ll never make any investments in future relationships. Once upon a time, “good will” was counted as an asset on the balance sheet. Now we have a whole generation of accountants who don’t even know what the word means.
And then there are those people who just can’t say no and honestly believe they can keep a gold digging bitch of a wife AND stripper girlfriend happy. For those of you in similar situations, I ask you this: “How’s it working for you?” Can you look in the mirror and honestly say you are happy? Don’t think for a second that your happiness has little impact on your business. What’s the saying “A house divided cannot stand?” Forget the money just for a moment! Learn to say NO, let go of “things” and cut them loose. Think about this for a moment: which do you want? To be rich, full of stress and miserable or to have a chance to create a life where you will actually be happy?
Our choices are one of the factors which shape reality. If you’re not happy with your reality, then isn’t time you think and choose differently?
Some things for you to think about, wouldn’t you say?
Be well and be good to each other.