By: Todd E Lentz, Senior Vice President of Business Development
“The Coca-Cola Recipe”
Marcus Lamonus’ TV show The Profit references his recipe for Coke as “People, Products and Process”, but before he ever turned his recipe into a hit television show, I was mentored into what became my “recipe for Coke” to run a successful business, which is “Be the best place to work, provide excellent customer service and make a profit”.
Regardless of where in world you are, a Coca-Cola tastes the same. There is no disappointment. When you open your bottle you can expect the same refreshing soft drink. The recipe for a successful business is the same regardless of the business to which it is applied, whether it be manufacturing widgets or operating a trucking business.
“The A&S Kinard Recipe”
Be the Place to Work – Successful businesses are run by good people. This isn’t a profound statement, but it does pose the question ‘What makes them good?’ The answer is success. Did I make a circular argument or a profound statement? You be the judge, but people thrive on being successful. Once they taste success they want more. Whether they are managers or operators of a business, their responsibility is to provide the resources, processes and goals that allow the associates to achieve success and want more of it. They become more engaged in the company’s goals, thus creating an overall successful organization.
Excellent Customer Service – Why are we in business? We do business to provide a needed product or service. Do keep in mind that even if you have no direct customer contact, there are still internal customers of the organization that require excellent customer service. Your customer may be the drivers you manage, the trucks you repair or the appointments you call for. With so many companies in the marketplace doing the same business, what sets your business or department apart? As a carrier in a competitive arena for business or for drivers, it requires the continual listening and adapting to what the customers desire and following through for service excellence.
Make a Profit – I am convinced that if the first two ingredients are used properly and in proportion, profit will follow. But to get to Coke we need profit as a key ingredient. Profit is the result of being intentional in your business, setting and meeting a goal with the result of excess gain.
Just like Coke is made the same around the world, to make a successful business requires properly balanced ingredients. Whether you are a driver, department lead or the account manager of a key customer, applying the principles of being the best place to work, providing excellent customer service and making a profit will provide a result as refreshing as an ice cold Coke.