We know that sometimes dishing up thousands for a new website is not an option, especially when you are starting your business. You want your business to be found and you want it to be custom made to promote your business. What you don’t want is to pay for a website that will put you out of business. You want your website to generate business and help you grow without nickel and diming you around every corner.
Our company is going through the biggest change of any growing business. I know there are many ways of phrasing it but I am calling it the “Business Owner Role Transition” and to me, it is the pivotal point for any small business owner that is growing. Many will feel caught in a trap right before or during this part. Many will sell their business when the end reward is just in front of them. They aren’t quitters but quit anyway as they don’t feel they can do it and they really can with that extra needed “push”. Many will not talk to others in the same spot and lock themselves into silos rather than reaching out and talking with those people – not friends, other businesses that you may consider competitors. I also see it as the hardest point in my 30 years of working.
For those that don’t hustle seven days a week, I truly commend you. I wish my life was like that but my mind is not wired no matter how much I try. For the longest time I tried but all it did was put me into a depression working the Monday to Friday life. I hated Monday’s and was living for Friday’s. This didn’t make for a positive work/life balance nor did it make me happy. I thought it did but looking back I was truly miserable.
Organizations know they need someone in a role that communicates with clients, they know it will improve customer satisfaction, but never want to invest (e.g. it eats into their profits) in such a role. Often an organization will allocate a small part of a person’s (or multiple employees) time to it. This causes a system that actually can be even more inefficient. This is why as an organization we added Lorissa to our team with just one job duty of communicating with our clients. This dedicated position will make certain customer communication happens. We even have set parameters that we will add another person in this position when we reach certain thresholds so that we don’t run into a situation where our coordinator is overworked and create failure in communication. Our project coordinator position, which we call the Time Keeper, has the sole responsibility to communicate with the customer, put in tasks for the team, double-check the tasks that the team did, and get back with the client that the changes are done. This role has no other functions and how it will stay.
In all of our lives we have transformations that are key to our personal existence, keys to the success of our company's growth (for business owners), and the success of the customer's that we assist. This week for JM2 of Valparaiso Indiana was truly no exception. We have changed our web design and marketing from being what I would classify as a commodity that any individual could due to a strategic marketing machine. That is a very bold statement and one I think you will agree. In this article you will see how we transformed our brand, our customer service, and our internal processes to become something no other web design company in Northwest Indiana has ever done.
Listening whether you are in a small prosperous town like Valparaiso Indiana or a big city like Chicago Illinois listening is the most important trait any company BIG or small can do to be successful in their endeavors. Often a company will think that it’s their way or the highway. They might state publicly it’s all about the customer but the actions dictate and say otherwise. If you’ve been reading our blog and several hundred of you are you now that JM2, my company, is run by humans. Yes, we are inferior beings in that we make mistakes. What makes JM2 different though is our agile philosophy on life where we are quick to adapt and change based on both positive and negative feedback we receive from current and past customers.
We have heard our customers and what they need through both positive and negative feedback. Negative feedback often is some of the best feedback and organization can hear. It’s not because we want that feedback but because the person believes either in (1) driving traffic away from us as they feel scorned or (2) they deeply believe, like us, in local small business and helping them improve. Not every business will choose the improve process and be themselves scorn. We believe no matter the reason for someone giving positive or negative feedback opens an area for not only self-improvement but company improvement. This is why we have opted to create an entirely new position now rather than waiting months, even years, down the road. We pride ourselves in our customer service and what we’ve learned is that a dedicated person between the customer and the team is necessary for success.
The day I decided to start my own business scared the crap out of me. I was going from a beyond comfortable guaranteed income to one where it was a complete unknown. Since I was twelve years old I had worked. Starting out as a paperboy for the Chesterton Tribune was my first step into being a freelancer as I might have delivered newspapers but was responsible for collecting money and delivering the product. I wanted the money for candy, fancy shoes, and anything else a teenager would want. I know that in the past five years if I would have stayed working for “the man” I would be close to having made half million dollars in that short period of time. So why in the world would anyone give up luxury for something less? Actually, I didn’t!
Today I want to talk about our bottom pillar of our company and that is about environmental impact. When it comes to our environment there are three approaches a company can take. They can either do something, not do something or do it partially. This is one of the easiest yet hardest things any of us could ever do as a society. Yet it is also one of the hardest as well. This is where many fall into that third area or if it’s convenient they will do it and if it takes one extra amount of energy they slip into the someone else will do it phase. Let’s take a look at the challenge of being friendly to the environment.
Our lives today run at a blazing and rapid pace. As a society, we have put ourselves here with technologies like text, email, and phone. We are now more used to the instant gratification lifestyle. That doesn't mean we should be in a rush. In fact, by slowing down I actually will get more done than I would if I rushed. It took me twenty years to come to this realization. I've had many bosses over time explain this to me. Many times, I listened just to appease and shut them up as I thought I knew better than what their experience was trying to teach me. It is only in the past four months that I have truly started slowing down and 'enjoying life' the way it should be. It's truly hard and I am going to cover the core areas I am focusing on and how it's helping me get more done in the same amount of time.
We've been asked many times over the past month how we do what we do. Our prices are unreal, our tactics are not normal yet produce continuous results, and our work/life balance is only like the most successful and profitable businesses. I thought it would be good to start telling people how we do what we do being we are always asked the question every month. I feel that it will also help other businesses. We will start with the most basic of processes which are hiring of the right people to do the job.
Honesty is often taken for granted until someone is caught in a lie. Trust is initially given when you don't know someone. This trust is given freely but can be quickly removed when you find that someone has been less than truthful. Some will have honesty as part of their core values but not their first core value. So why do we put it as the first value when others don't? This is a separator that allows us to be different, unique, and to stand out from the rest. Being from a small town of Chesterton Indiana I was brought up on a 'Leave it to Beaver' type of lifestyle where a handshake is worth more than any document written by a lawyer to seal a deal. All services should be priced fairly and not rip someone off, and that communication should be polite, honest, fair, and yet firm when communicating.
Valparaiso Web Design Mission Statement
Business YETI provides each client a custom developed solution to meet their business needs. Dynamic and creative solutions for marketing, web design, software development, social media, photography, video, and visual branding. Achieving excellence in an honest and ethical manner.