What Cheap Trick Can Teach You About Business

Yes, as we all should know by now, I'm a Cheap Trick fan. And if you pay attention, their songs contain secret messages that are directed only at me, woooooo!

Okay, there aren't REALLY any secret messages, but you can still learn something about business from them anyway.

Give Credit Where Credit Is Due

I don't know if people realize this, but when musicians get paid royalties for their music, the songwriters and performers are paid at different rates, and the songwriters are the ones who get paid more in the long run. In Cheap Trick's case, Rick Nielsen is the main songwriter, but he puts every band member's name on every song.

He's been quoted in interviews as saying that he does that because the band is the reason why each song is the way that it is, everyone puts in an effort, and the songs wouldn't be the same without every member's effort.

Which is a pretty decent thing to do, but he's right about the fact that the music is the band, not just him.

So give credit where credit is due, and don't try to take credit for everything if you weren't totally responsible for it on your own. That just makes people resent you and think that you're a jerk. Which you probably are if you're taking credit for someone else's work.

Surrender, But Don't Give Yourself Away

Yeah, I'm resorting to one of their more recognized song lyrics, but it makes sense. Sometimes you have to be flexible, but don't bend so much that you give in when it's important.

I've had many experiences when delivering cakes when I'll arrive somewhere and something isn't exactly how it's supposed to be. I'll compromise when it's not a big deal, but if it's something that will affect the integrity of the cake, forget it.

I'll stand there and wait until they bring me a new cake table if I think the one they have set up will fall over (and I have seen tables like that.) If the cake is set up so that the sun is beating down on it, I'll move the table into the shade.

You basically have to know what your limits are, and what you're willing to bend on.

Reputation Is A Fragile Thing

This is a pretty self-explanatory lyric. Watch what you do to represent yourself and your business.

If you post videos of yourself doing stupid things on youtube, be prepared to lose clients and/or attract the type of clients who think those stupid things are pretty cool.

If you deal unethically with your clients they'll eventually know it, and so will other businesses. And they won't want to refer people to you if you're a kickback-taking, false-advertising, credential-inventing creep.

I had some more "music lessons," but I'll save them for another time...The voices in my ear are telling me to go listen to Dream Police now.

 Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at www.acaketoremember.com and www.acaketoremember.etsy.com

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