Friday, September 16, 2011

Some business models work better than others

There are some new innovative businesses out there but there are also lots of mature ones too. There are several ways to run businesses that can't grow, the ones that you wouldn't want to reinvest funds in the company. You can put company profits into stock dividends and CEO salaries, or you can put profits into employee benefits and salaries. Which one works best for the good old USA? Trickle down or trickle up? Then I happened to see my Amerigas Propane delivery guy on the street the other day. I waved him down and we had a little chat. I told him that I had recently learned that my new neighbors, who had moved in three years ago, had been contacted by his company and been told that since they were such good customers that they were entitled to a significant reduction in their gas bill, from $4.99 down to $ 3.49 per gallon, about 30% less. I mentioned to him that my wife and I have been paying the same $4.99 per gallon assiduously on time for the last 25 years. I didn't even ask him if he was aware of this situation, but I did ask him to do something for me. I asked him to go back to his office and ask his boss if this was company policy, and if the boss was OK with the situation. I suggested that if the boss said it was OK with him, then maybe all the delivery guys who work there might start looking for new jobs. I said that in this economy, some businesses were going to make it and some weren't. I opined that the companies that didn't screw their very best long term and loyal customers were likely to be the ones that will be around a few years down the road. I was pleasant and friendly the whole time and we parted as friends. Then I happened to see the Dish Network installation guy across the street.... Hey!

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