2. Dress for Success! I admit that dressing right is important. People are superficial, and treat you better when you are dressed appropriately. Have you heard the phrase “an empty suit”, though? Dressing right isn’t all that is important. What you say and what you do is little more important in business than obsessing over your tie color.
3. Outsource everything you can to pinch pennies. Outsourcing saves money. That is why companies do it. There is often backlash from consumers, though. Whether it is from terrible customer service, or stories about bleak working conditions abroad, outsourcing can impact the image of your company negatively. No company wants to be seen as shipping American jobs abroad to save a buck.
4. Push your company on Twitter Ok, this can be good business advice. Honestly, it matters what your company does. Do you make auto parts? Maybe don’t tweet then. What would you say over twitter if you are a plastics manufacturer? If you are a marketing company, go ahead and tweet, but make sure some intern doesn’t get the whole company in hot water by posting something inappropriate over social media.
5. Use cold calling and Spam email! No. Don’t. Everyone dislikes it. No one buys anything from a Spam email. It is an unpleasant waste of everyone’s time. Who buys anything from a telemarketer? It’s such a dated tactic, in the age of targeted internet marketing.
6. Ignore the interns. Some of your interns may be quite talented, and willing to work for much less than someone mid-career. It’s a mistake to ignore them because they haven’t “paid their dues” yet.
7. Location Location Location! Location is only really important if it presents a major problem. Are customers or clients too scared to visit your dangerous neighborhood? Is it out in the middle of the forest? That is an issue. Cheaper office space can be a good idea though, as long is it doesn’t abut the city wastewater treatment plant.
8. “Listen to me, I’ve been in this business for decades.” Age brings wisdom. Also, times change. Getting stuck in the old ways of doing things, because they worked so well in 1953, is obviously a mistake. Listen to your elders, but don’t expect them to be on top of recent trends. Ancient business advice doesn’t always equal wise business advice.
9. Measure performance and swiftly fire underperforming employees. I’d call this the “weakest link” approach to management, where you keep everyone walking on eggshells waiting for the next performance review and “restructuring”. Of course the new “structure” is one where they don’t have a job. A culture of fear is never good for morale.
10. Spin everything and put on the happiest possible face. It frustrates me when people use euphemisms and refuse to be honest. It isn’t “restructuring”- People are getting fired. It isn’t “tele-nurturing”- it’s a stranger trying to sell you something.