A reputation can mean two different things depending on the size of the company.
For example, a small, independent family business in a single location will aim to create a very positive reputation in their local area. Word of mouth and recommendation will mean a lot to a business of that size and people within around a 5 mile radius will get to know what they’re like as a business.
A regional or national company on the other hand, well a reputation is a little different. Yes they will want to have a good one, that people will want to talk positively about. But the chances are that regional and national businesses will advertise in the mainstream media, and aim to shape that reputation a little. In this respect, it is very important they get it right, as we all know people are very quick to complain and the bigger the business the more likely they are to come in for some stick from the buying public.
Developing the right reputation though starts from the very first day a business opens. The family business I am part of opened it’s doors over 32 years ago and the owners at that time were determined not to be like everyone else who was jumping on the bandwagon. The business wanted to make sure that product quality, workmanship and customer service were the three main selling points of the company. It meant the prices weren’t the cheapest, but we set out on a path to show the consumers that buying cheapest certainly isn’t the best way to go.
So over the decades, keeping true to those three basic points, we helped nurture a reputation that saw us become one of the most well known window and door installers in the area. People know we’re a little bit more expensive than the rest, but they also know that what we install is very high quality and the workmanship cannot be bettered. And as far as I’m concerned, that is one of the best reputations to have.
On the other hand, if you start off in business badly, then you have made the task of trying to become successful very difficult. People are very quick to complain so if the first house full of windows and doors you install goes badly, it’s going to be an uphill struggle from there.
To this day, given the reputation of some of my competition, I still don’t know how some businesses are still going. I know that there are some that certainly don’t deserve to be in business. But that is the way it goes. All the good, honest companies out there should just focus on what they do best and make sure that the public around them know about it as much as possible!