WHEN it comes to business, people are paramount, no matter what the industry.
That was the message from Mark Bouris, one of Australia’s most influential businessmen, who was in Bathurst on Thursday as keynote speaker at Bathurst’s BizWeek luncheon.
Mr Bouris has over 25 years in the finance and property sectors and is also host of Celebrity Apprentice.
He said he was very grateful to have the opportunity to speak to the group about what he saw as the fundamentals of good business.
He apologised to the gathering for being unshaven and without a tie; he’d had an early start to what began as an average day, which included a broken razor and a 8am business meeting which never evolved, and for which he had to be back in Sydney for at 5pm Thursday.
But his message through the madness of his morning was the importance of people when it comes to business success.
“Nothing beats people; they are the core of every relationship; whether it’s your customer, investor or shareholder, you have to go beyond everything you can to placate people,” he said.
He urged business owners to do whatever it takes to appease their customers and colleagues.
“Everyone has the potential to make your business better,” he said.
He then went on to talk about what’s behind business success, saying it was important people understood the concept of hard work.
“The ability to work is an honour,” he said.
“If you look at is an an honour, it’s no longer hard work.”
When it comes to recruiting staff, he also advised business owners to look for people with a sense of proprietorship.
“If you got someone with this you’ve got someone you can work with, it’s critical,” he said.
Mr Bouris also spoke about his dealings with Kerry Packer, who taught him one of the most important lessons in business, being accountable.
“What penalty are you prepared to pay if it doesn’t happen,” Mr Bouris asked the luncheon.
“Run your business, have a goal, but have someone you’re accountable to,” he said.
Finally, he also encouraged business owners to keep their perspective.
He said if you’re happy everything else is irrelevant.
“Hang in there and don’t beat yourself up too much,”he said.