小型企業能從信任得到益處──SMALL BUSINESSES CAN BENEFIT FROM TRUST

蓋洛普(Gallup)研究組織曾對數千人進行調查人們對哪些組織團體最有信心?第一名是軍方,緊接在後的第二名則是小型企業。接受調查的人們有68%表示,他們對小型企業的信任度高於其他組織團體。

在這份列表中,大企業僅排名第12 位,且只有23%的信任度。對小型私人企業與大企業之間很大的信任差距可能有各種不同的原因。我們不是要指責誰,大企業中有很多對我們的社會非常重要,也努力在利潤和取得顧客對產品和服務的信任之間做到平衡。但這項研究凸顯的觀點是-小型企業因為大家對他們的信任,似乎有很好的機會能為每個人的利益服務。

小型企業對比於大型企業在競爭時顯然有許多劣勢,包括購買力、人力、財力、影響力以及品牌辨識度。但是,運用智慧和創造力,小型企業領導人也能制定當下和未來成功的策略。

例如,你如何比較,當走進服務人員較少的大型百貨公司和有人隨時提供銷售服務的小型零售店的差異呢?你是否曾經嘗試過針對大公司解決帳單問題,被迫使用自動語音回覆系統,或者必須和遙遠城市中的客服人員交談而感到沮喪呢?小店不僅可以更方便地到達,更可以和客戶建立個人關係。

儘管聖經中沒有大小型企業的區分,但確實提供了較小型企業可以使用的原則。以下是一些教導:
智慧可以引導你辨別正確的市場。小型企業可能沒有大型企業可用的所有資源,但是通過尋求上帝的智慧並回應客戶的需求,就可以做出明智的決定。「智慧人爬上勇士的城牆,傾覆他所倚靠的堅壘。」(箴言21 章22 節)。

具有相同價值觀的董事會非常重要。成為創業者或小型企業主,並不意味著一定必須獨立工作。除了建立合適的團隊之外;有相同信念與價值觀,由值得信賴的朋友或同事所組成的「董事會」也是不可忽視的重要。「不先商議,所謀無效;謀士眾多,所謀乃成。」(箴言15 章22 節)。

企業應持續建立於好的信念上。「客戶至上」的理念的確是能讓客人回購的一種方式。大公司也可以用類似的方法,但有時股東的利益可能會超越個別客戶的關心與處理。在小型企業中,通常更容易專注於個別客戶的需求。「凡事不可結黨,不可貪圖虛浮的榮耀;只要存心謙卑,各人看別人比自己強。各人不要單顧自己的事,也要顧別人的事。」(腓立比書2 章3-4 節)

© 2021 版權所有非傳統商業網路(前身為純全資源中心)。節錄自和 Rick Boxx 的純全時刻,這本刊 物主要 是從基督徒的角度來探討職場上正直這個主題。如果希望知道更多關於這個事工或是想訂閱每日純全時 刻,請上這個網站: www.unconventionalbusiness.org. Rick Boxx 最新出版的書「提供實用五個關鍵的神 的方法來建立企業。」

反省與問題討論

  1. 你對蓋洛普調查結果顯示對小型企業的信任度更勝於大型企業,你的反應如何?你認為哪些因素可以解釋這樣的差異?
  2. 如果你經營一家小型企業或在一家小型企業裡工作,對於蓋洛普的調查結果得知人們對你這類型的企業有很高的信任與尊重,你的感覺如何?如果你是大型企業或公司的一員,你是否認為人們對於大小型企業的信任度存在差異是合理的呢?解釋你的答案。
  3. 人們如何在市場上尋求智慧做出關鍵的決策,尤其是那些小型企業的決策呢?你對於可信賴顧問群(私人董事會/屬靈董事會)的集體智慧有什麼經驗?
  4. 你是否同意小型企業在將客戶利益放在首位這方面有優勢?請解釋理由?宣稱「客戶永遠是對的」這樣的哲學有哪些潛在的陷阱?

備註:如果你手上有聖經,想閱讀更多相關經文,請參考以下內容:
箴言11章14節
11:14 無智謀,民就敗落;謀士多,人便安居。
箴言11章25節
11:25 好施捨的,必得豐裕;滋潤人的,必得滋潤。
箴言11章1節
11:1 詭詐的天平為耶和華所憎惡;公平的法碼為他所喜悅。
箴言16章11節
16:11 公道的秤和天平屬耶和華,囊中一切的法碼是他所定。
箴言19章20節
19:20 你要聽勸教,受訓誨,使你終久有智慧。
箴言22章4節
22:4 敬畏耶和華心存謙卑,就得富有、尊榮、生命為賞賜。
箴言27章23-27節
27:23 你要詳細知道你羊群的景況,留心料理你的牛群;
27:24 因為資財不能永有,冠冕豈能存到萬代?
27:25 乾草割去,嫩草發現,山上的菜蔬也被收斂。
27:26 羊羔之毛是為你作衣服;山羊是為作田地的價值,
27:27 並有母山羊奶夠你吃,也夠你的家眷吃,且夠養你的婢女。
箴言28章20節
28:20 誠實人必多得福;想要急速發財的,不免受罰。
馬可福音12章30-31節
12:30 你要盡心、盡性、盡意、盡力愛主─你的 神。』
12:31 其次就是說:『要愛人如己。』再沒有比這兩條誡命更大的了。」
路加福音6章31節
6:31 你們願意人怎樣待你們,你們也要怎樣待人。

SMALL BUSINESSES CAN BENEFIT FROM TRUST

By Rick Boxx

The Gallup research organization polled thousands of people to determine in which institutions they had the most confidence. After the military, which was ranked first, small business was second in the Gallup ratings, with 68% of the people surveyed stating they trusted small commercial enterprises more than other institutions. 

Big business, however, ranked only 12th on the list with a 23% trust level. There are many possible reasons for the huge gap in trust between small, privately owned businesses and large, corporate businesses. Our intent is not to indict large corporations; many of them are vital to our society and strive to maintain a proper balance between profits and commitment to those who purchase their products and services. But what stands out in this research is that it would seem small businesses have an excellent opportunity to capitalize on the public trust for everyone’s benefit.

Small businesses obviously have many disadvantages when competing with big businesses, including purchasing power, human and financial resources, influence, and in many cases, name recognition. However, with utilizing wisdom and creativity, small business leaders may be able to develop strategies for present and future success.

For instance, how would you compare going into a large department store – or “big box store” – that has a minimum of staff with going into a small retail store that has salespeople ready and eager to assist with whatever you need? Have you ever been frustrated in trying to resolve a billing issue with a large company, being forced to used automated responses or talk to someone in a distant city? A small business can not only be more accessible, but also can develop a personal relationship with its customers.

While the Bible makes no distinctions between big and small businesses in its teachings, it does provide principles that smaller enterprises can use to their advantage. Here are some of them:

Wisdom can guide in identifying the right market. A small business might not have all the resources available to a big business, but by seeking God’s wisdom and being responsive to customer input, good decisions can be made. “One who is wise can go up against the city of the mighty and pull down the stronghold in which they trust” (Proverbs 21:22).


A board of directors sharing the same values is critical. Being an entrepreneur or small business owner does not mean having to work alone. In addition to forming the right team, the importance of a “board of directors” of trusted friends and peers who share the same beliefs and values cannot be overestimated. “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed” (Proverbs 15:22).

Building a business based on good will. A philosophy of “the customer comes first” is one way for ensuring that they return for more business. A large corporation can follow a similar approach, but sometimes the interests of shareholders can outweigh personalized attention for customers. It is often easier to focus on individual customer needs in a small business. “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others” (Philippians 2:3-4).

Copyright 2021, Adapted with permission from “UBN Integrity Moments”, a commentary on faith at work issues. Visit www.unconventionalbusiness.org to sign up for UBN Integrity Moments emails. UBN is a faith at work ministry serving the international small business community.

Reflection/Discussion Questions

  1. What is your reaction to learning about the survey that showed the high trust level for small businesses compared to large, corporate businesses? What factors do you think can account for the difference?
  2. If you work in or own a small business, how does this report about the high regard many people have for your type of enterprise make you feel? Even if you are a part of a large business or corporation, do you believe this disparity in levels of trust is warranted? Explain your answer.
  3.  How can someone seek wisdom in the marketplace for making critical decisions, especially for those operating at the small business level? What has been your experience in relying on the collective wisdom of trusted advisors?
  4. Do you agree that small businesses can have an advantage in being able to put the customers’ interests first? Why or why not? What are the potential pitfalls, if any, to a philosophy that states “the customer is always right”?

NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more, consider the following passages: Proverbs 11:14, 11:25, 11:1, 16:11, 19:20, 22:4, 27:23-27, 28:20; Mark 12:30-31; Luke 6:31


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