Constantly Keep An Open Mind

Aug. 7, 2017

While the phrase “think outside the box” has been used so often it almost hurts me to write it, the idea it still very relevant. In an industry as established as the vending, micro market and office coffee service industry, realizing potential, considering new opportunities, and building new processes is important in order to stay relevant. The best vending companies continue to innovate even when they can report strong profits. Many embrace new concepts, try different product mixes and invest in new technologies.

Why change

Why do these companies change? Why not just continue with business as usual, keeping their current customers happy and maintaining their daily costs? Quite simply, it’s because we live in a world that changes. From the tide to the weather, our world is far from a stagnant, predictable place. Add in consumer preferences and you can see evolution taking place right before your eyes as they demand and buy an increased number of healthier, all natural, organic items from our channel.

Examples of innovating

Technology of course is a key strategy of innovation. The August issue of Automatic Merchandiser not only covers the new and creative payment solutions being launched in “Creativity Is Key For Payment Technology” on page 20, but also the benefits of technology when selling, “Technology And The Value Of Your Business” on page 34. Technology certainly helps companies evolve processes and meet changing consumers desires, such as paying with cashless. However, technology isn’t the sole way to evolve. Focusing on new segments and driving same store sales is just as important. On page 38 is the story of a Michigan operation that took a minor portion of its business and increased the revenue by 30 percent until it equaled the revenue from vending, micro markets and OCS.

Change can be difficult

In business, it is a fine line between researching ideas in order to make well thought-out changes and altering your direction based on a single whim. That line is usually dictated by the owner. Some personalities consider the ever-evolving industry with a “nothing is ever good enough” attitude. Others find it invigorating, with a “what’s next” type of optimism. Either can work as long as change continues to happen for the better.