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Doing the right thing--paying it forward

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« Culture makes the world go 'round...and 'round...and 'round!Very funny, Mr. Magoo »

Doing the right thing--paying it forward

02/02/10

Permalink 04:56:45 pm, Categories: Business Leadership

A number of years ago, I worked for an organization that had literally hundreds of vendors. In many cases, these vendors came and went over the years as they either went out of business or didn't pay attention to the needs of their customer. But one vendor in particular, Vendor X, was different. Over a 13+ year period, they stayed around. Why did this happen? There were many factors, but I believe the overriding factor was that they truly believed in doing the right thing for the customer--even if it was not in their own best (short-term) interests.

As an example, there were several occasions where I asked the vendor to propose a solution to a problem and the vendor came back and said "Yes, we can give you a solution; but honestly, it is not the best solution you can get for your particular situation. In this case, you would probably get a better solution from Vendor Z rather than from us." Wow!! A company that knew when to walk away from business. Those situations built significant credibility for the vendor with us and led to more business down the road.

Earlier today, I (along with a partner company) had the opportunity to do the same thing. We decided that the solution we could propose was not in the best interests of the client and decided to step away, while also giving them some possible options. Not only did I feel good about doing this, I believe the client will ultimately be better off. I'm waiting to hear from the client, but I'm willing to bet that they will be happier with this solution than what we could have proposed.

Stay tuned!!!


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Don shares his experience and ideas about how to get the most value from your IT function. Note: The views and opinions expressed here are those of Don and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of his clients or employers.

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