One of my clients recently commented in an email to one of my recent blog posts titled "Would You Rather Be Right or Rich?” If you’re not hiring stellar employees already tailor made for their assignments or if you find yourself continually disappointed in the performance of some of your staff, you might benefit from my response. Here is his comment followed by my reply.

Hello Gordon,

RE: Would You Rather Be Right or Rich?

There are some brilliant life lessons in there that I know I will use in my day to day life.

As we buy and grow our small businesses, the obvious aim is to grow it to the extent where we don’t need to micro manage our employees. We all want to have the perfect employees and I’m sure many businesses out there have staff who have angered customers by not truly believing that the customer is always right.

But how do you get your employees to make the type of decisions we expect of them while not micro managing them? Or better yet, how do you find the right staff in the first place where it is already in their mindset that “the customer is right”?


And my response:

Good employees aren’t hired. They are cultured and trained. That said you should…

* First, interview and screen new hires for a customer-centric attitude.

* Then, as an owner, you have to set a consistent model yourself for the behavior you expect. You need to treat your employees with the same respect and courtesy you expect them to exhibit to your customers.

* Then you repetitively instruct them in exactly the behavior you expect from them.

* Then you set the bar high and with a watchful eye call them out when their behavior doesn’t measure up.

* Then, after a reasonable learning and adjustment period, if their behavior still doesn’t measure up, you politely with courtesy and respect replace them and start the cycle again.

Over time you eventually build up a core of employees that consistently exhibit the proper behavior and who apply peer pressure to new hires to shape up quickly. Once this customer-centric culture is established in your company it actually tends to perpetuate itself. Hope this answers your question.

Best wishes for your success,


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Gordon Bizar

Gordon Bizar - Expert Business Buyer and Finance Coach Gordon simplifies business purchasing and financing. He makes understandable the use of financial leverage to start, buy or build any business with little or none of your own cash. His unique expertise and success track record has led to his appearances on NBC's Today Show, PBS's Late Night America along with segments on more than 120 other radio and TV news and talk shows. He has been featured in articles in more than 25 of the nation’s leading newspapers including the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, and Wall Street Journal. Gordon personally bought and built companies in fields as diverse as manufacturing, financial services and business education. He also served as Chairman of the California Task Force on Taxation and Regulation of Small Business during the Brown administration and is sought after as a consultant by businesses large and small and government agencies such as NASA for their technology transfer program.

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