Guident Newsletter – August 2018 – Issue 28

Change is hard for this old guy, so what did I do?”  I did my research. 

Recently, I hired a marketing firm to work with my company, Guident Business Solution, LLC, because I thought I needed a “subject matter expert” to help me evaluate how I communicate the benefits of my company in today’s dynamic business environment.  Even though I was the one who initiated the relationship with a very well-known professional company I had resisted making some of the changes they suggested.  One such change was the re-design of my company logo which I have had since 2009 when I started the company and by the way, I designed the logo myself.  I don’t know why I resisted, maybe because I designed it or because I invested significantly in promoting the logo in the market. 

So, what did I do?  I went on a quest to prove that my logo was the better design of course.  After all, I am the business owner and I launched this company many years ago and just to be sure, we are doing very well helping businesses succeed and grow.  Why change something that is not broken I thought!  So, I began to ask the opinions of some of my most trusted advisors and others who did not know I existed prior to this point.  Frankly, I would ask anyone who was in earshot!

As I began my research I would ask which of these two logos looks better?  This unproven re-signed logo or this old and trusted logo.  Now I don’t remember asking the question in just that manner but some of my most trusted and honest advisors suggested I was moving forward with a more than slight bias!  I guess they may have been right.  Nonetheless, repeatedly I received the unexpected response that the new logo was an improvement and of the two logos, most (ok all who I asked) said the new logo was the clear winner.

Today I am using the new logo and truth be told, I am very happy with the results.  A more import lesson for me is the fact I had to pivot and accept the advice of the “subject matter expert” I hired.  As the owner of the business, I get asked my opinion every day.  I consider myself the “subject matter expert” in my business and I am very comfortable having others look to me for guidance.  Having to step back and take advice and/or direction is not my strong suite, so it is even more important for me to listen to those experts I have hired who are suggesting improvements to my business.  As a person who has been running various businesses for more than forty years, this has been a valuable lesson learned.     

I often think of the “logo” lesson when I suggest to business owners to create an advisory team for their business.  I suggest these original advisory team members; your CPA, your banker, and your lawyer.  Additional professionals can be consulted as needed, such as a professional marketing firm.  This team is charged with “advising” the owner when important decisions need to be made.  I often say, “I am much smarter in a room full of people than I am by myself”.  Surrounding ourselves with smart employees and accomplished advisors is just good business.  Best of luck creating your team of advisors!