Modmacro President Matthew Smith’s latest book was released to the public earlier this month. It’s called Simple Business Advice: Focused Recommendations That Will Make You a Better Business Owner, and it offers some of the most practical, actionable advice for business owners that we’ve ever seen in a book of its type.
Matt is a seasoned business owner himself, and also works with numerous small business owners in a diverse set of industries. Because of this, he has seen what works and what doesn’t when it comes to being an effective business owner. He’s put his thoughts together in this book, comprised of short chapters, each of which offers simple, to-the-point advice.
We wanted to dig into one specific chapter in the book to give you an idea of what you can expect in Simple Business Advice. In his chapter titled “You Can Only Be So Flexible with Customers,” Matt takes on the popular notion that “the customer is always right.” He begins the chapter by saying, “With few exceptions, your clients should get what they want. That said, there’s nothing wrong with telling them when their ideas are no good.”
He points out the two dangers of giving in to customers who try to dictate the way you do business:
“First, giving in when the client’s idea is ill-conceived can kill your brand… You have allowed your brand to be reduced to nothing more than the hands that are carrying out the plan. You’re that much closer to being a commodity, an easily replaced part of the process.”
“Secondly, bad ideas produce poor results. And since you’re responsible for delivering results in the form of products or services, you’ll be blamed for the outcome. Even when you’re just following directions. People have short memory spans. Later on, it won’t matter whose ideas were good and bad. All that will matter is who did the work and how it resulted.”
Matt’s solution to clients who push their (bad) ideas? “It’s smarter to have a hard conversation with the client, and in rare cases, kill the project, rather than go along for a bumpy ride that ends in a bad part of town.”
You can read more about this and other important topics that small business owners should consider in Simple Business Advice, which is now available in both print and digital formats from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, and Kobo.
The book was made possible by contributions from several small business sponsors, some of whom offer their own opinions in special guest segments throughout the book:
- Mike Merwin of VitalChurch Ministry: An experienced team of pastors who are called to the unique ministry of revitalizing churches through times of transition or crisis.
- Mark Grisafe of M. Grisafe Architects: An architectural design firm providing residential and commercial design services in Long Beach, Irvine, Signal Hill, Los Alamitos, and nearby.
- Sabrina Conway of Lil’ Chit-Chat Speech and Language Therapy: Partnering with Southern California families to provide premier, in-home pediatric speech and language services
- Matthew Grisafe of AV Programming Associates: Certified Crestron programming, design support, lighting programming, and Crestron system evaluations in San Diego, Orange County, and Los Angeles County.
- Michal Bohm of BM Windows San Diego: Top rated supplier and installer of replacement windows and doors in the San Diego area. Guiding the process from consultation to project completion.