I’ve been advising one of my fellow SCORE counselors about the role of websites in business as we attempt to help one of his clients boost her sales. In his latest email he said, “a web site must have a business purpose, not an ego purpose.”
I couldn’t agree more!
In this case, the issue is not that the client is a braggart, but that she’s unwilling to accept that she might have taken a wrong turn with her website. I’m pretty sure I know where she’s coming from because I struggled for years thinking my websites, business cards and other materials were just fine because that’s what family and friends will say to spare feelings. I can tell she doesn’t understand why, with all the positive feedback, the business is struggling to get off the ground.
I also assume she’s reeling from the sting of my reality check because I didn’t have many positive things to say in the website critique I was asked to give. No item was safe as I did my best to explain why the color scheme right on through to the composition of her professionally shot photos could be contributing to the sites performance issues.
In her response to my critique she asked for a second opinion, and, I’m worried that she’ll keep looking until she gets an opinion she likes.
Hopefully she won’t have to learn the hard way that business is no place for the faint of heart. If you’re not willing to accept the opinion of an “expert,” no matter what the field of endeavor, who has no stake in your success or failure, then you’re subconsciously choosing to wait for the competition to mop the floor with you. Again, harsh, I know, but tough love is always a downer at first.
Shopping for complements isn’t going to save a business, but being your own harshest critic might. If you intend to make a living by owning a small business, you need to check your feelings at the door and allow logic and honest feedback sort out the path to success.