Communication is the key to vendor relations. In your small business, you will be in need of many products and services. Unfortunately, not every company that provides these products and services will have their act together as much as you do. You, as a small businessperson, were able to carefully study each purchase because it was your money. You knew exactly when, where, how and at what price you were willing to partake in those purchases. Not all vendors you deal with will have such savvy folks working for them.
Most business people, especially small business, owners are not as refined or efficient as you are in your small business operations. Do you think most small business people would even read this article? But you are aren't you? That means you care enough to get it right, stay efficient and have the support you need from your team and your vendors. Most vendors may not be on the ball like you are in your company; Usually they are:
Slower to process orders
Substandard in their quality
Unaware of their actual costs
Unwilling to give 110%
Lacking in procedures (paperwork)
Unable to manage their staff
Not good at planning ahead
Lousy at keeping promises
Knowing this unfortunate truth about businesses, it's amazing some stay in business. As a matter of fact, 80% of small business start-ups will be out of business in one to five years. Ouch. That's a pretty scary statistic, but it's true. Obviously, not all businesses will fail. Some will succeed in spite of themselves. The ones that will succeed will be better than the ones that won't.
So, how do you know who gives good service and who doesn't. It really doesn't matter if a company gives everyone else bad service as long as you always get good service. Yes, it matters but from a vendor standpoint, you know when you need something you also need deliver and performance from that vendor not the usual line of excuses. It is extremely important for you to be extra nice to vendors. A vendor who drops everything to help get you on your way can make or break a profitable day. Remember, your small business generates money every day by fulfilling customers needs and if you cannot fulfill their needs they will find someone else who will and that someone is probably your cross town competition or at least the competitor you worry about the most.
Be nice to vendors, get to know them on a personal level and think about this next time you order something from them.
"Lance Winslow" - If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; www.WorldThinkTank.net/wttbbs
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