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Your Most Important Business Trait

I was in Puerto Rico last week and experienced excellent customer service from the hotel, the many restaurants, and the taxi services I used. I love excellent customer service! And I let these businesses know how much I appreciated their work.

This experience made me think about how I want people to view my business and practices. I know I can deliver a quality product and service. But first, customers must trust me enough to give me a chance. So how I present myself or state my values is essential.

Many people feel great excitement about the journey ahead when starting a business. There is usually a passion or a drive to do something meaningful and prosperous.

Then the work sets in. Some of your first tasks are determining your market and your ideal customer, developing your brand, and setting your business structure. You may also set up the financing, find a rental space, buy equipment, build a website, and more.

After all that work, how you wish to present your business is still not clear. How do you want your customers to feel? What value do you want others to understand about your business? What do you want them to say when someone talks about your services?

There are many terrific answers to those questions, but let me give you some that may not come first on your list.

Integrity Accountability Community


What does a business with integrity look like?

  • Following through on promised services

  • Fair and reasonable prices for products and services

  • Excellent and friendly customer service

  • Follow ethical business practices

  • Dedicated to quality customer experience

A business characterized by integrity generally has a more perceived value from its customers and community. With this value, your business is destined to grow and succeed.


What does accountability look like?

  • Delivering products and services on time or as promised

  • Responding to customers promptly and with respect

  • Following policies and procedures with both employees and customers

  • Following reliable recruiting and retention practices

  • Following stated DEI commitments

  • Employees who are well trained, well compensated, and service-oriented

Accountability is a trait that nearly everyone wants. As a customer, knowing that a product or service has consistent quality, is delivered on time and with grace, and knowing the promises are fulfilled will ensure they come back to you or recommend your business to others.


How is a business community oriented?

  • Supporting local business networks to the best of your ability

  • Partner with other businesses for different events or actions

  • Use socially and environmentally responsible practices

  • Foster a culture of trust and responsibility

Being a community-oriented business means that you, and your employees, are in it for more than just yourselves and the bottom line. Caring about the community you are a part of, whether digitally or physically, tells your customers and neighbors that your business is part of a greater mutually beneficial mission.

Consider these values in your business. Decide how to show commitment to these values and see how your customers, employees, and community respond. Revis t them at least once a year to ensure that you still present your business the way you want to be perceived.

What other values are essential to your business? How do you make this obvious to others?


Madrina Consulting provides management consulting and coaching services to small businesses and nonprofits to help create and improve their path to success. Book a free discovery call to discuss how we might help you.

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