Secrets to Success


Going above and beyond
the call of duty

How can some business leaders find solutions to problems while other companies find excuses for how it can't be done? I can still remember hearing the phrase, "Your shipment will arrive in 6 to 8 weeks ma'am." This was the industry standard. Once FedEx arrived in town, this "rule" radically changed.

FedEx didn't simply change postal standards. It changed business standards around the world. I just received my Nextel phone today, after ordering it a mere two days ago. I can receive books faster by going online than scheduling a trip to the bookstore. Even standard shipping takes less than one week.

Companies have learned they must increase their turnaround time to get products in the hands of consumers soon after the orders are placed. Those who don't comply with this new standard find themselves struggling to gain new customers.

Companies who understand their customers and find ways to solve their problems will be the leaders in their field if they take care of their most important asset -- people. Innovation is required in this age of rapidly advancing technology.

"New" becomes "old" within months. A great business model might be wonderful today, but in a year from now, someone will have figured a way to do it better/ faster/cheaper.

Most people resist change. If you choose to embrace/affect change, you'll guarantee your success in business and in life. Decide whether you will be the leader in your industry; or follow the rules of how business has always been done and hope for the best.

Employees who adapt to change quickly are the ones who will always find themselves employed. If they are "down-sized," they quickly adapt and find a new field to embrace.

If you're simply trying to fulfill your basic "job description," you're missing the mark of true success. However, if you're consistently going above and beyond the call of duty, giving people more than they expect, you'll see the rewards of your commitment.

Recently I was so impressed with an employee at the Ward theatres in Honolulu. Despite my disappointment that I was unable to see the movie we were planning to see, he was outstanding in how he handled the customers who needed a refund for the sold out show. He personally walked us to the customer care center and quickly took care of our needs.

When I asked him about the new "reserved seating membership program," he carefully explained how the program was created to serve the "avid moviegoer." The annual member fee would provide a first class movie going experience. Members would be guaranteed a comfortable seat, and their tickets would be waiting for them when they arrived at the theatres. I actually left the theatres excited by seeing innovation in action.

Coaches Challenge: Are you simply doing enough to "get by" on the job or in your business? Do you take advantage of ways you can increase your knowledge? Are you keeping abreast of where your industry is headed, thinking of ways you can contribute?

Think of the ways your community will benefit if you become the next innovator in your chosen industry or profession. Think of how many jobs you could create by starting a business that leads the nation. It is up to you to boost your community and its economical success. Don't rely on someone or something else to secure your future.

If you are committed to continuous improvement, and would like the list of questions I've created that will get you to start thinking innovatively, drop me an e-mail, and I'll make sure you receive the link that will catapult your success in any profession. In the unabridged article, I describe several business ideas that people have implemented that defied "common sense," yet the results of these innovative strategies were in the millions of dollars. I promise you'll never think the same way about business again.

Deborah Cole Micek, chief executive officer
of RPM Success Group, is a business success coach
and life strategist. Reach her at
or (888) 334-8151.

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