I watched, as hundreds and thousands of other KU fans did, my beloved Jayhawks basketball team go down in flames last Saturday during the second round of the 2010 NCAA championships. Some will say there was bad officiating, some will say that Northern Iowa was just lucky, and some, like one of the team members, will say they should have won because they are better than UNI.
Sorry, I can’t agree with any of that. KU was victims only of themselves. They had begun to believe the hype. Even the President of the United States had them going all the way so they believed that they were entitled to win. That’s why they lost.
I watched the game all the way through. I say very good players who had won 33 games so far play a very mediocre game. I watched an on fire UNI play with heart and a no give up attitude and dominate the Hawks. Not even a presidential endorsement could make up for their lackluster playing. It was their undoing.
I know that there are many, many KU fans that will disagree with me with anger in their eye. It doesn’t change the facts. The Jayhawks lost because they felt entitled. Plain and simple. They didn’t think they needed to play their best because their opponent wasn’t of their caliber. Guess what. They lost because UNI wanted to win more.
The same goes with small businesses. Many businesses fail every year because they don’t think there is anyone competing against them that are as good. Then out of the blue comes someone who is leaner, meaner, and wants their customers more than they do and takes their business away in a matter of weeks or months. Just because you’re successful now or have been in the past doesn’t mean that you should just relax and sit back. Someone out there will come out of the blue like UNI and take your hard won clients.
Just because we are in business and successful doesn’t mean we are entitled to that continuing without further effort. We have to constantly be on our toes, watching trends, changing our path, and keeping our eye on the goal. Only then can we prevent our competition from unseating us.
The upset of KU was no surprise; they didn’t play up to their ability. Just make sure that you as a business owner are playing up to 100% of your ability and potential. A sound marketing strategy and plan is a part of that.
Running a small business is much like playing a basketball game. You need to drive to the goal and use all of the resources at your disposal to make the basket. You have to do that day in and day out adapting your game plan as you go.