Are you Playing to not Lose?
I saw an unremarkable movie that was written and directed by Tom Hanks recently called Larry Crowne. However, there was one scene that was particularly funny and enlightening at the same time. It was when Julia Roberts’ character was attempting to disarm her security system.
While obviously intoxicated, her line to Hanks was, “I have 30 seconds to disarm the system before the police arrive in 30 minutes.” Just a reminder of what consumers may think of the products and services we offer─ fast to go off, slow to respond.
The comedy continues as she asks Hanks to turn around so she can input her “secret” code. In her regular speaking voice, she says “Now what was that code…oh yeah…2.” Hanks smiles as he can clearly hear her, despite having his back turned. She pauses, trying to remember the second number. She remembers…“2.” Painstakingly, she finishes with “2...2,” and proudly exclaims “Enter!” Hanks is bemused by the irony of it of course (and so was I).
Some of our customers are not all that different from those depicted in this movie. They are intelligent, but the users’ perception is directly proportional to the users’ experiences. Customers need us to deliver an exceptional customer experience 24/7. Exceptional customer service and value is always in the eye of the beholder. In other words, it’s their money and they get to spend it the way they choose.
Security companies must earn their customers’ loyalty every day, and turn them into brand advocates. Attracting new customers is important, but retaining existing customers by exceeding their expectations, and ultimately earning a bigger share of their discretionary money, is the difference between a good and a great company.
A great company will continually update its strategic and operational playbooks. As Dr. Robert Kriegel said during ESX 2017, “Do you play to win—or do you play to not lose?” The industry will continue to be faced with a changing competitive landscape that is relentless and unforgiving. Take it as an exciting challenge and passionately move forward toward the win, as opposed to continuing with old ways, hoping not to lose. Although the playing field has been leveled, competition is as fierce as ever in the electronic security industry.
Albert Einstein once said, “Life is like riding a bicycle; to keep your balance, you must keep moving.” In the same vein: business is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving forward. For security professionals, Einstein’s infinite wisdom has never been more relevant.
Although ESX 2017 is history, your approach to your business shouldn’t be. I encourage you to rethink your future and always play to win!