Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Lazily Grow Your Business: "The Thank You Economy"

The Thank You Economy

I just got home from the airport.  On the 3 hour plane ride I finished Gary Vanderchuk's "The Thank you Economy,"   I can't more highly recommend it to anyone who:

1) has a business
2) knows someone who has a business
3) might one day have a business
4) might one day meet someone who has a business

So, run -- don't walk -- to pick it up.  Or go to amazon -- I'll even give you the darned link:

I read Gary's first book "Crush It" which I also couldn't recommend more highly, where I really got the message: social media is not just for personal fun, it's a force that must be reckoned with professionally.  I loved that book so much that I was dying to meet Gary when he came to KPCC/Drucker Family Forum last week.  What a thrill to meet this force of nature, and a true inspiration. 

When I stood in line to get my books signed, I watched him.  Most people were big fans like me.  But, I saw there were a few in the line had no idea who he was.   It was starting to irritate me when I saw that Gary was being just as I imagined he would be: GENEROUS.   It really appears like he tries to "give" something to each and every person he meets.  The woman right before me literally -- unbelievably -- seemed completely disconnected and uninterested, even though he was signing her book!  He tried engaging her, first with his eyes, then his body (leaning in), then his words.  Nothing:  she would not RECEIVE!   I love him for trying.  I really love him for trying.  He lives his life in a context of gratitude and generosity.

"The Thank You Economy" shows that every business -- from the local burger joint to dentists to corporate lawyers, and beyond -- needs to live in the context of gratitude.  The flow of life, money, and energy from customer to business -- and back again to customer -- is based on a genuine appreciation of the customer's needs and wishes. 

I am so inspired and have a new fire in my belly that was lit by the Vanderchuk torch!  I inherited by dad's business when he died a year and a half ago.  While I got in new management and worked on "righting" the ship, I was always very moved by the hearts of our customers, their undying loyalty to my dad, their sticking with us through thick and thin (i.e., when management didn't care about them).  I have been wanting to personally go up to Alaska and thank each and every one of our customers -- to give them ALL a hug!

As I read the book I came up with tons of ideas of how I am going to honor them, my staff...and my dad's legacy.  I am thrilled, and even though I've already had an 18 hour day, I am still full of vim and vigor!

I hope you feel it!...and pass it on!


  1. Anonymous9:10 AM

    Gratitude and reciprocity have driven - are still driving - the new media revolution forward. They're the basis of open source, Firefox and all that good stuff.

    Get hold of a copy of The Gift (unfortunately I can't remember the author). It's almost the foundation text of what might well be called and justifiably, the reciprocity / goodwill movement. I feel sure you'll enjoy it



  2. Anonymous12:08 PM

    My middle aged brain finally coughed up the author's name of The Gift. Lewis Hyde. Worth reading