I know what you are thinking.  As a small business operator, you must be thinking that running a business in 2019 is hard.  There are so many competitors out there, expecially the big players who make competition hard.  WRONG.

Yes, there is competition, and the big players will take a large share of your market.  But you have an advantage that they cannot compete with.  The small business.

Why is a small business a competitve edge you ask?  Well, small business offers something the big players will never be able to offer.  Great customer service.  By that, I don’t mean being nice and resolving your customers concerns. I mean, treat the customer like a king.  They will come back time and time again.

Look at the big phone companies in Australia for example.  You know who I am talking about.  Their customer service is attrocious.  Actually, it is beyond attrocious.  Try and call them to get something done and you will end up talking to an overseas call centre, speak to someone who reads off a script and be transferred around, and around and around for hours and never get the resolution you want.  You end up hanging up in frustration, your blood pressure is through the roof and you swear you are going to change providers.  Good luck with that, most are just as bad.   Imagine that you ran a small boutique telco.  One that picks up the phone when it rings, one that can answer your customer’s enquiries right off the bat, and has the ability to fix things then and there.  To top if off, if you are selling telco products in Australia, and you have Aussie staff, in an Aussie call centre, this is a recipie for success!  Imagine that. Your customers will love you.  They will also pay a premium for this service.   There are a few aussie broadband providers (get the hint in the name) that do this exceptionally well, and stick to this business operating model, and are doing very well in an industry dominated by the big players.

So how can you adapt this to your small business?  I always say that you need to step back and reflect upon your business from your customer’s perspective.  Be the customer.  What would you want?  Your business needs to see things from this angle rather than from the business manager’s perspective to get things right.   There will always be compromises to ensure profitability but it needs to be seemless for the customer.

Staff is another extremely important consideration.  If you are a micromanaging, strict boss that treats your staff like crap, they will treat the customers the same way. If you nuture your staff with appriciation and thankfulness, this will reflect into their work performance, and will be how they treat your customer, resulting in more revenue and increased customer satisfaction.   Never under-estimate this.  There is no need to be a crap boss and treat your staff poorly if you truly care about wanting your business to flourish and bloom.

In summary, the small business has an exceptionally powerful edge against the big players in the form of the ability to provide outstanding customer service. Capitalise on this and you will reap the rewards.