Why Are You In Business?

Posted on 20 September 2011

I watched a video blog post by Marie Forleo about how to deal with refund requests and unhappy customers.

A viewer/reader commented on Marie’s blog: “It’s always better to give your customers what they want. Even if it means NOT getting their money. We’re in business to serve…”

Hmmm, I’m not so sure about that. I’d say that we’re in business to make money, and the way we do that is by being of service. If we consistently do NOT “get their money”, that means we’re not in business – we have an expensive hobby or we’re running a charitable foundation that gives away money to worthy causes. And it seems to me that always giving customers what they want even if it means not getting their money is a sure-fire recipe for going broke.


Here’s a definition of “business” that I found online:
“An economic system in which goods and services are exchanged for one another or money, on the basis of their perceived worth. Every business requires some form of investment and a sufficient number of customers to whom its output can be sold at profit on a consistent basis.”

What do you think? Where do you draw the line between “always giving customers what they want” and “getting their money”? It’s a tricky balance, and I can’t claim that I always get it right.

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