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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Bait and Switch means trouble


As is normal for my wife and I during one of our many road trips, my wife selected a hotel for an overnight from a hotel guide. She called ahead and obtained an unsolicited price quote that was a few dollars less than the guide stated. Upon confirming the reservation and offering a credit card the clerk told her it was unnecessary as they had plenty of rooms available.

When we arrived the same clerk told her the price was 50% higher than he quoted on the phone an hour earlier. A heated discussion was then under way. As we were tired, I suggested we pay the higher rate and took obvious note of the clerk’s name tag. When he saw that move on my part he closed his computer screen and stated that “we will not have any room available for you now.”  He went on to state that he has a “right to select who to do business with.” We were agreeing to his raised price, but he was refusing service. He never said the hotel was filled or there were no available rooms. It was obvious he had been caught attempting to implement a bait and switch and was going to be reported.

We drove across the street to another hotel for the evening. Wrote a letter to the hotel chain corporate management and copied the BBB in the area, in each case identifying the clerk by name and suggesting that he be fired. Hopefully the firm did just that. In any event, we will not stop at that hotel again and we will let our friends know of it at well.


What would you do in a similar situation? How would your business react?

 

Steve Koenig, SCORE Counselor


 

Friday, July 10, 2015

Beauty of this country

 

I have been reading a book on Global Warming.  One of the statements I came across

reminds me of one of those I would have posted on my office wall at work. It seems worth repetition for all businesses:

 
“The beauty of this country is that every time we’re pressed against the wall we come up with new things – we become the most creative force in the world.”

 
This statement is attributed to an energy entrepreneur.

 
What about those statements that make your business GREAT?

 

Steve Koenig, SCORE Counselor


 

 

Friday, July 3, 2015

Accountability

 

Accountability does not just happen. You have to work for it.

 
Here are a few guidelines that can help:

 
The message from “the top” is key. When you get the message right “accountability” grows. It is just like a planting. A bit of topsoil, some seeds and fertilizer and you add some water. So plant some focus on “accomplishments”, set expectations, measure outcomes, provide feedback and enable ownership of issues.


Matching skills with tasks can drive success. Mismatching can demoralize others. So spend the time necessary to get it right and keep it right.

 
Rewards work. So reward those that demonstrate “accountability”. Others will see it as the right behavior.

 
Set performance goals with the “team”. When they “own” it they know how their part impacts the whole and will go the extra mile.


Stay engaged and monitor performance.

 

Hope this helps

 
Steve Koenig, SCORE counselor