Saturday July 20, 2024

Dumb Luck

Dumb Luck

By:  John Hotson

How many times have you heard it?

“He was lucky to get what he got for selling that business.” or “Man, his timing on that deal was just dumb luck!”

Well as the saying goes, “Sometimes its better to be lucky than smart.”

I was reminded of this on a recent trip to Florida. One evening my wife and I drove past one of those elaborate mini-golf courses – the ones with the smoking volcanoes, shipwrecks and alligators. My attention immediately went to their sign where they proudly advertised –  “Now Hiring” and immediately below that “Live Gators”. It was a definite Kodak moment – worthy of turning the car around and going back for a picture – I mean how can you resist a message like that?

There were several of these “designer” courses on this particular stretch of highway, but I couldn’t help notice that this one was much busier than the others.

Dumb luck?

Is it possible that these two separate advertising messages were accidentally juxtaposed by some unthinking employee? Or was my attention drawn by an elaborate marketing strategy that cleverly trapped me into instantly understanding what distinguished this organization from their competition?

That they were:

A: So successful that they needed more staff to handle all the business, and
B: Clearly unique from their competitors through their offering of local live entertainment.
Either way it worked. Their unique value proposition got through to me with four simple words. The next time I go mini golfing, guess where I will go!

Business owners can certainly use a little dumb luck in differentiating themselves from their competitors when the time comes to sell their business. Too often owners overcomplicate their business and overlook the basic things that made them successful in the first place. Is it that special attention to customer service? Or that leading edge product enhancement? Or perhaps it’s the excellence of their operations that makes dealing with them seamless and effortless. Whatever the differentiator, owners who are thinking about succession, owe it to themselves, and to all stakeholders who will benefit from maximizing the value of the business, to promote the basics and focus on what got them here.

Perhaps with that in mind they will generate their own dumb luck.

About John Hotson:

John is a seasoned marketing and communications professional. He has worked as both a business owner and advisor to owners who are committed to improving the value of their business.  John is the principal of Clearwater Corporate Communications and is a partner with Reverse Management in the Business Transition Alliance

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