I was reading this horrifying article about what extreme loneliness and isolation does to a person. In short, it does bad things.
The article and the process of working on an article about water sports segment of the boating industry got me thinking about how stakeholders in the marine industry need each other just as people do.
The manufacturers need the dealers, the dealers need the marinas, marinas need accessory makers -- even rivals need each other sometimes.
Of course there is competition among businesses, everyone wants the customer’s money. But if you maintain good relationships with your competitors, there’s a good chance business will flow both ways.
One small example: if a customer comes in looking for a boat or product you don’t carry and you simply say, “sorry,” they’re only going to know that you don’t have the item and were unwilling to help. But if you refer them to your competitor up the road, they’re going to remember that you went out the way to help them – and they’ll likely be back.
Guess what, your competitor will remember too. And when they’re faced with the same situation, they might just return the favor.
So keep it civil out there, we’re all stakeholders in recreational boating and we can’t make it all alone.