BY BILL FAETH
It’s been exactly one year since Jason Sharenow (of Broadway Elite Worldwide) hand delivered 150 In-N-Out Burgers to the Limo University Learning Center on the show floor at the first Las Vegas CD/NLA Show.
It’s been exactly one year since I got to hug Randall Willms (of Minuteman Limousine) and Faith Glasgow (of Peak Limo) as I walked off the show floor.
It’s been exactly one year since I’ve been to a conference of any kind and, MAN, DO I MISS IT.
Like you, I have struggled over the last year mentally, financially, and physically (I put on the COVID 25 for sure), but ...
I am really proud to be here today typing this article for you. You should be proud of yourself for reading this because it means you have survived over the past year, which is no small victory as a large percentage of operators in our industry are no more.
The last year has been extremely challenging and costly, but I view it differently and believe what I have learned and what I implemented into my business. The personal changes I have made have set me up for future success and the losses experienced are just a success tax.
You and I both know that nothing worthwhile is easy, and we have to sacrifice things to become—whether it’s time, short-term earnings, or that scoop of ice cream—but it is all just success tax, and when paying that tax we get stronger and learn.
I’ve said from day one that those who make it through the pandemic will have a tremendous amount of opportunity on the back end because the industry will contract, and the public will be more apprehensive of utilizing TNCs. The pent-up demand for traveling is already high—and it’s across all income levels.
Now is the time to apply the financial and relationship lessons you have learned and experienced over the past 12 months to start the recovery process. More and more of the country begins to open up almost daily, and business is picking up.
“Too many companies in our industry don’t have any connection with their clients, which presents a considerable opportunity for you if you are strong at relationship building.”Financially, you need to remain as prudent as you have been since the beginning of the pandemic. What I mean by this is continue to manage your financial runway, and as you become profitable again, be sure you start paying your company at least 10-20 percent and re-build your retained earnings for another rainy day (year). Some of the companies that are no longer here didn’t do this pre-COVID and paid the price, so please understand this is not a COVID strategy. It is just plain old good business sense.
Secondly, be sure to really invest in rebuilding the relationships with your past contacts, especially your most valuable clients. Many of you have NOT stayed in contact with your clients; if this is the case and they haven’t utilized your service over the last year, they are not your clients any longer. You will need to nurture them back into or build an even stronger relationship than you previously had with them.
Too many companies in our industry don’t have any connection with their clients, which presents a considerable opportunity for you if you are strong at relationship building.
Lastly, start selling now. Not marketing, selling. Go see people. Zoom with them. Do virtual networking.
Whatever you do, start (or continue) today!
Remember, you’ve already paid the tax over the last year. Now the only way you can make it a success tax is to go out and kick some butt and rebuild your company. [CD0321]
Bill Faeth is the founder of Limo University. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.