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Four Rules for Turning Your Business Into Gold


Be the swimming cocktail waitress of your field.

Back in college, when I was but a mere teenager, it seemed I was intuitively destined to become big in marketing. I worked one summer as a cocktail waitress at The Tamiment Resort in the Poconos.

It was a sweltering summer. Unfortunately, I had to work poolside on these blistering days. Even more unfortunately, nearly all my potential drink-buying customers were wisely cooling off within the pool - instead of lounging on the chaise lounges, where the management had positioned me to serve and make money.

This surprise heat wave had created a surprise big-business problem! No money to be made. The summer heat had literally dried up my sales opportunities. Plus I personally was sweating and miserable.

My big business solution? I stripped down to my bathing suit, which was just one convenient layer beneath my standard Tamiment Resort apron uniform. Then I slipped into the pool, with tray and order pad, and side-stroked around like an energetic bar-mermaid, and took lots of drink orders.

My big money results? My customers loved the drink-ordering convenience - as well as the playful absurdity of a swimming cocktail waitress. Everyone benefited. Particularly me. I made lots of money and got a nice, refreshing swim. Plus, later in the evening at the cabaret lounge, I became known as "The Swimming Cocktail Waitress." This new moniker served me well. Everyone wanted to order from "The Swimming Cocktail Waitress."

There are a few Golden Touch Rules to be learned in this Swimming Cocktail Waitress story -- so let's plunge right in…

Rule #1
No matter how bad the times, customers with money exist. Seek and snag them! During challenging times it's essential you become a Maven of Trends and Demographics -- then brainstorm new ways you might tweak your service/product to morph in your "Swimming-Action" to get you to paying customers. Remember: Sometimes narrow focusing your skillsets/brand increases profits. So, hone in on what your Unique Selling Point is -- then sharpen that point! The more you're remarkable, the more you'll be marketable!

Rule #2
Don't think about yourself as having a specific job. Think about yourself as someone who solves problems/needs/fears.

When I decided to become a teenage Swimming Cocktail Waitress, I recognized that those customers in the swimming pool were sloshing around there because they were sweaty and hot. Meaning? They'd also crave refreshment -- which no other waitress was bringing them -- because everyone viewed themselves as simply being Lounge Chair Cocktail Waitresses.

Money-Magnetizing Question: How might your presence, talent, time, and energy solve today's customer's most basic problems/needs/fears? The bigger and more untapped the problems/needs/fears, the bigger the money earned!

Rule #3
You don't need to work longer hours, just more fearless hours.

You'd think the day after my outing as a Teenage Swimming Cocktail Waitress I'd have created a tidal wave in that pool of swimming waitresses all dipping into my sales pond. But no, no, no. All the other waitresses were too afraid to break the rules and stand out with a Unique Selling Point. They all did exactly as instructed -- not daring to think outside the box/inside the pool -- and thereby they made a lot less money. The other waitresses let fear inter-fear with their success.

Money Magnetizing Question: If you had limitless courage, how might you risk more so you could earn more? What are you most afraid of? Failure? Poverty? Ego-bruising? British economist John Stuart Mill had a great quote which helps risk-taking pioneers move forward past fear. He said: "Every great movement must experience three stages: ridicule, discussion, adoption." This quote makes a valuable golden rule for success... so...

Rule #4
Be ready for your fearless ideas to undergo ridicule and discussion, before adoption.

You can be sure that when I jumped into that swimming pool with tray in hand, the first reaction was sniggers (aka: ridicule). Next came whispers (aka: discussion). Then finally those dollar-producing drink orders (adoption!).

Golden Touch Assignment

Don't let fear inter-fear with your swimming in new career waters. Write up 2 lists on a small card of: (1) Why you should feel tremendous confidence to go for your goal. (2) Why you feel passion to go for your goal. Put this card in your wallet -- where all your money is! Whenever fear strikes, strike back with your confidence-boosting and passion-boosting lists!

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No positions in stocks mentioned.

© Karen Salmansohn

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