By Brant Mackey
“If you build it, they will come.” This memorable whisper from the 1989 movie, Field of Dreams, has since been borrowed, copied and regurgitated by people and businesses alike.
While never my bailiwick, business consulting and advising seems to have become all the rage. From the multitude of informational books to simulcast seminars, business owners are inundated with lessons on how they can better their business.
As a journalist, I have to keep an open mind and be skeptical at the same time. Basically, I have to listen to and read everything but don’t necessarily believe everything I hear or read.
My real issue with business improvement is the time that it takes to properly identify, implement and actualize the areas of a business that might need help. Items like effective leadership and successful collaboration, both fairly obvious, are general in nature and time consuming to address.
As I look around Springfield I see businesses and owners from both ends of the spectrum; those who utilize the “think-tank” mentality and those who prefer the “just do it” process (to coin a phrase from Nike).
I respect those businesses and owners who dedicate time to self-improvement because I have difficulty justifying anything that takes time away from just plain working on news stories or calling clients for advertising.
However, through the last eight years of business ownership I have been able to identify that one single item that is the cornerstone the Business Journal; reporting the news with integrity and accuracy. Everyone on our staff believes that our success stems from our news presentation because if that is successful, then readership follows and with readership, comes advertising.
Again, business advice is not my forte, but whenever someone asks I encourage them to determine their own “cornerstone.”
The first thing that everyone wants to tell me is customer service. It is the standard and safe answer but if everyone is doing it… I encourage them to look past this, deeper, to identify that single, uncompromising factor that draws their customers in – that is their cornerstone.
In the meantime, I listen to the whisper, “If you report it with integrity and accuracy, they will come.”
Brant Mackey is publisher and editor of Springfield Business Journal.