I recently lost a friend and mentor, John Lovorn, owner of The PACE Group. Over the years, John freely shared a lot of wisdom with me in hopes that it would be helpful to me and my business. He even had a short book published called “Wit and Wisdom” with inspirational quotes and lessons that he often gave away. There are certain pieces of his advice that I have adapted into my business and life that have helped shape me into the businesswoman I am today. To honor his legacy, I’d like to share some of these with you today.
- Do everything with humility. John had many things he could have boasted, but never did. But he did share many wonderful things his customers were doing. He challenged me to put the customer first on an even higher level than anyone else ever had. There was a quote in his signature line of his email that I thought encompassed this well:
“There is only one boss. The customer. And they can fire everybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by sending their money somewhere else.” – Sam Walton
2. Pay people better than they expect. I don’t believe I have ever received a payment from John for services in which he didn’t ask the question “now is that enough?” This wasn’t because the check wasn’t for the agreed upon amount – it always was at least that. But when you have a business relationship that you value, it’s worth the extra question and possibly dollars to make sure the efforts and payment match. He shared with me that sometimes he was asked for more than he thought was fair but paid it anyway because he wanted that person to feel they’d been treated fairly.
3. Dance with the one that brought you. I honestly can’t say how many times I’ve heard John say that exact sentence. And what he meant by it was to always remember who helped get you to where you are and to honor that relationship.
I’m sure there are many other lessons I learned from John in our 10 year friendship that will strike me in distinct situations, but those are the 3 on my heart today to share. If you’ve ever learned business lessons from John or from your trusted mentors, I’d love to hear them.