Business Strategy

To Succeed in Business: Sell Lemons

To Succeed in Business: Sell Lemons
Michael Gokturk

Image Source: eventbrite.com

Heard about Michael Gotmurk? He is the CEO of payfirma, a company that is a multichannel payment processing and cloud-based platform for people. The company has been one of the biggest ventures. But more than that, Michael has an interesting story that will give you some insight as to how you can make your company the biggest success.

Michael is from Turkey and he attributes his business lessons to his grandfather who was a reputed entrepreneur himself. Every kid loves the summer holidays. Take a break and chill, that is what it is meant for, right? But that was not the thing for Michael. His family was well off, but Michael’s grandfather wanted him to sell lemons. Yes, selling lemons and that too from door to door. Why did his grandfather want him to do so? Read on to find out.

Michael went to the markets with his grandfather on Sundays to buy lemons. All this in the gruelling heat. They would negotiate and get a good rate for the bulk of lemons they would buy. When Michael returned home, he would package them in tissue paper that was reusable. After this, he would go on to distribute them in his neighbourhood on a cart. What was the trick? Turkey’s staple food ingredients included lemon, so people used them in every meal of theirs. Of course, they could get the lemons themselves, but who would want to take that much pain when there was someone who was delivering it to them to their door and that too with a good packaging. Michael not only learnt a great lesson regarding entrepreneurship, but he even got a loyal client following. The valuable lessons that his grandfather taught him through this lemon selling crash course have helped him become the successful entrepreneur he is now. Let us look at those lessons.

The first lesson that he learnt was that investing in your reputation matters a lot. That is the first investment of a person. One should build a reputation first, the rest follows. The reputation he builds among his neighbours was the first thing that he needed. When people rely on you and you deliver them on time and the best service, the feeling of joy is mutual. You will certainly feel more responsible, and this made Michael work even more diligently. Keep your words and your reputation as they matter a lot in building a long time bond with your customer.

This is the first commitment that you need to make, and it will help you in building a great business as people will trust you when they look back at your record of always being punctual and on time.

The second lesson that Michael learnt was to say ‘no’. This one matters in every domain of life but in business it becomes tough to say no, especially at a point when you are just growing, and you are young in the market. But this lesson also was learnt by Michael when he was selling lemons. He learnt all about people and their choices, values that would later help him build his venture. He learnt how to negotiate and decline the offers that would neither help him nor the customer. Instead of doing bad business, he just said no (it is tough).

The third and the most valuable lesson was the work ethics. Yes, it may sound old fashioned but it is the one that will finally differentiate you from the other 100 people who are trying to make it and fail. It is true that every company today is coming up with a startup. People are giving in everything they can. But the problem with the unsuccessful ventures lies in the fact that every idea of theirs just fizzles out, and they give up. Never give up!! We have heard of this term million times but the more we hear it, the less effective it gets. So, what will get you going in the world where people give up early, and your dreams will be hindered by the many voices that say “you can’t do it”. Well, the one thing that will get you going is the indomitable spirit and the willpower. Once your plan and ideas fail, instead of relenting, start over and with double the zeal!! This is what will get you going. The successful CEOs of companies that started as oblivious organizations and ideas of college dropouts are the ones who had shed a lot of tears and sweat out in the sun like Michael before they made it big. This is what matters. In the end, your spirit and the never say die attitude along with the work ethics of the cavemen will help you become the most successful venture that is out there.

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