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Issue 15

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Issue 15 April 21, 2009
Hello Friend!

This past week I was in the Post Office sending out some packages.  As I stood in line awaiting my turn, I was shocked at what I saw!  Were my eyes deceiving me?  Nope, there it was - in plain view for all to see - the US Postal Service was using the "Honor System". 
How, you ask, were they using the "Honor System"?  To find that out....and more importantly to discover how you too can use the "Honor System" to grow your business, you have to read this week's feature article!
Until next time, here's to Winning Often and Winning Big!" 
Carpe diem!


Mikes Estes, The Winner's Coach

 Mike Estes
"The Winner's Coach"


The USPO Using The Honor System?

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The US Post Office Using the Honor System?    (Part 1 of 3)
I never thought I would use the US Post Office as example of how to potentially increase your business.  After all, aren't they the same Post Office that had a $2.9 Billion shortfall in their budget last year?  And aren't they the same ones talking about cutting back to a 5 day delivery week?  And aren't they going to raise the price of stamps....again...on May 11 from 42 cents to 44 cents?
The answer to all of the above questions is a resounding yes.  Yes, they have problems!  So what is all of this talk about them using the "Honor System".  Well, last week I was standing in line patiently (LOL) waiting my turn to drop off some packages....and then I saw it.
The US Post Office Did What?
The box may have been there all along and I just never noticed it before - but I don't think so.  I almost bumped into the box as I slid my packages down the "supplies bar" as I waitedCartoon my turn.   It was then that I could not believe my eyes.  Right in front of me was a box full of 1 cent stamps with a sign that read "1 Cent Stamps on the Honor System.  Please Put Your Money in the Box".
That's right, the Post Office was using the Honor System to sell 1 Cent stamps.  Granted, the stamps are only a penny - so they don't have much at stake.  But they did make it easier for the customer that just needs a few stamps (in preparation for the rate increase).  They didn't have to stand in a long line.  They could just walk up, grab some stamps, throw some money in the box and leave.

Why Don't We Use the Honor System Any More?
As a kid I grew up in a small east Texas town.  I have fond memories of my buddies and I going to the local drug store after school and getting a coke or candy bar.  And guess what, the sodas (and coffee) could be paid for on the Honor System.  We dropped a few nickels in a cigar box and took a soda. 
I also remember going fishing at a private lake that operated on the Honor System.  At the entrance to the property there was a big metal box that we dropped a couple of bucks in for the right to fish in the private lake.
I can hear you saying to yourself that "the drugstore, the post office, and the lake didn't have much at risk".  Well, let me tell you about a bigger risk.
$2 Million On The Honor System
As an adult I transacted business on the Honor System for years.  As a salesman in the telecom industry, I remember convincing the owner of the company I worked for to stock over $2 Million in inventory for one of my clients.  No contracts - it was all done on a hand shake. 
And guess what?  When the telecom industry began to go south and my client began to have financial issues, they honored our hand shake deal and purchased all of the material we had stocked for them (even though they scrapped most and took the rest as a write off). 
On an important side note, this customer purchased over $50 Million worth of materials from me over the course of a couple of years.  I guess the hand shake deal worked out pretty good for all involved.
How To Use The Honor System Today

Am I suggesting that you risk millions on a hand shake deal today?  No, not necessarily.  However, I am suggesting that you make good use of the core of the Honor System.  And that core is TRUST.  The examples I listed above worked because of deep levels of trust by all parties involved.
The business landscape has been ripped apart through the years due to broken trust.  We have many leering examples from the Tycos and Enrons of the world.  But there are also many subtle examples of trust being destroyed daily by small businesses.  Every interaction with a customer either builds trust or destroys trust - but the trust level does not remain neutral.
Is your business set up to strengthen the levels of trust at every customer interaction?  If not, you are in jeopardy of losing that customer to a competitor that is maximizing the customer's trust.
So how do you build trust at every customer interaction?  Stay tuned, as that will be the subject of our feature article next week!  If you can't wait until next week or need help in building trust now, call me toll free at 877-YOU-WIN2. 

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About Mike Estes & Born To Win
CartoonMike is the President and Founder of Born To Win, LLC.  Mike's core belief is that "We are all Born To Win" - but sometimes we need a little help.
That's why he founded Born To Win - to help others to not just win, but to WIN BIG in their business and personal lives.
Mike is a multi-million dollar sales producer and is passionate about helping small businesses excel at growing their bottom line.  As a certified Total Integration consultant, Mike has both the expertise and world-class suite of tools to help you to take your business to heights that you only  dreamed of.
A true kid at heart, Mike believes in having fun while pushing the limits.  An example of this is his recent jump from the top of a telephone pole to a trapeze bar!  Are you ready to win big?  If so, contact Mike and the folks at Born To Win today via email or toll free at 877-YOU-WIN2.

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