I've always had trouble fathoming those that own businesses in low growth industries. I'm not being pious, or looking down on anybody--this is just my own thought processes--but whoever got rich running a gas station, sandwich deli, low-priced hair salon, mini-mart, or any number of other such businesses? I'm not talking about the few that buy up multiples of such types of stores as an investment. That I get. But those that become content in an industry where they know it will never make them considerably more financially well off I don't get whatsoever. Almost any place I go I'm thinking about the financial prospects of such a business, thinking about overhead, potential gross income, profit margins and I start to wonder if this is a business I would or could ever spend my life doing.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not a person driven by greed, or even primarily by "success"... I put God and family first, but I also don't shy away from wanting to be successful in the traditional (American) sense. Someone asked me my definition of success recently and I responded: Life, Health and Happiness. Life and health are easily determined, but happiness is pretty darn vague, and I deliberately answered that way. What makes me happy?
On a professional level, my job (usually) makes me happy. I enjoy the struggle for success, which is, in my own mind, a destination that I will probably never fully achieve. But that's the way I like it, because no matter how successful I am, I'm content with where I am but also not so content that I don't continue the struggle to be more successful tomorrow than I am today. That's why I couldn't survive in a no- or low-growth industry. I have to see the potential of being greater tomorrow than where I currently am today. And to get there, I must always be growing not just my business but personally as well.
The other day I read these three reasons why growth should matter:
And while I may not see the growth potential in a gas station or a deli, those who do because that's what they love to do certainly can see the potential. You just need to decide if making a good sandwich is enough or if you want to strive to make the best sandwich... or provide the best customer service, the most cutting edge hair styles, etc. Where ever you are, whatever your niche, look for those opportunities for growth. Find them and attack them with vigor. I have no doubt that once you do, you'll see endless opportunities before you.
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Stoney deGeyter is the President of Pole Position Marketing, a leading search engine optimization and marketing firm helping businesses grow since 1998. Stoney is a frequent speaker at website marketing conferences and has published hundreds of helpful SEO, SEM and small business articles.
If you'd like Stoney deGeyter to speak at your conference, seminar, workshop or provide in-house training to your team, contact him via his site or by phone at 866-685-3374.
Stoney pioneered the concept of Destination Search Engine Marketing which is the driving philosophy of how Pole Position Marketing helps clients expand their online presence and grow their businesses. Stoney is Associate Editor at Search Engine Guide and has written several SEO and SEM e-books including E-Marketing Performance; The Best Damn Web Marketing Checklist, Period!; Keyword Research and Selection, Destination Search Engine Marketing, and more.
Stoney has five wonderful children and spends his free time reviewing restaurants and other things to do in Canton, Ohio.
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