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Last Update: Thursday July 29, 2021

Key Idea: Keep Your Promises

Technology, the best equipment and fabulous customer service people are the three-prong strategy used by Modern Postcard to deliver on its promises.  All the videos...

Key Question:


One key is to do what you say you're going to do it when you said you would do it and for the price you agreed to charge.

Q:  Why does this sound so easy but it turns out to be so hard?

Because running a business can become complicated. We get caught up in hundreds of little goals on our way to the big ones. We are tempted to cut corners or look for the easy way.

One of the hard parts of this goal is when we know we're not going to be able to do it we have to tell the person we made the promise to that we are going to fail. We have to admit our mistakes and therefore expose our shortcomings.

With 150,000 customers, Modern Postcard makes many promises every day and Steve has worked hard to put the systems in place so that all promises are kept.

Q: Is, "do what you say you're going to do" a pre-determined, realistic, worthwhile goal?

A:  Yes. But it is really hard to measure because there are so many people and so many steps in the processes we have to go through to deliver to a customer.

Think about it

When did you not keep a promise? What happened?Can you set the goal first for yourself and then for everyone in your organization to, "Do what you say you're going to do?"

Clip from: Modern Postcard

From 16 to 250+ employees

Carlsbad, California: Can an entire industry, the business of performance management, be reduced to a postcard? Can the deep study of kaizen and the work of business gurus like Peter Drucker be reduced to a link?  The quick answer is, "Yes." Visit Modern Postcard and meet Steve Hoffman and his team  producing over 100 million postcards a year for some 150,000 customers.

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Modern Postcard, Inc.

Steve Hoffman, CEO

1675 Faraday
Carlsbad, CA 92008

Visit our web site:

Office: 7604317084

Business Classification:
Printing, publishing

Year Founded: 1996

Keep Your Promises

STEVE: First of all, I think that business is actually pretty straightforward, very simple. You're there to serve the customer. It's not about greed. It's not about...

HATTIE: Big car.

STEVE: ...big cars. It's not about the complicated formula. You're really there to serve the customer and, really, to put them before yourself. Once you can get into that frame of mind, the rest of it falls into place. I think my father was very humble. He was a small-business man. He was very successful for what he did. He could only grow to a certain size being a job shop. One of the key things was, I saw him do it.

HATTIE: Right.

STEVE: I could see that he was in business for himself. He was successful. He says, `It's actually pretty simple, Steve.' He says, `Do what you say you're going to do.' He said, `In business, people think that they can get by with, you know, sort of padding the truth, so to speak, or they deliver it a little bit longer.' He says, `If you say you're going to deliver it on Monday, deliver it on Monday. Better yet, deliver it on Friday if you can.'

(Voiceover) One of the key things that I heard, I think it was, in a book a long time ago was that everybody wants to get to heaven, but nobody wants to die to get there. That's one of the key things that I've always felt was that from day one with my business was I didn't care about, you know, the number of hours. I didn't care about the effort. I was there to build an organization, to grow it and serve my customers and my employees. I love it. I love it.

In the Studio

HATTIE: You saw it first, right here, a strong and growing company that is able to give customers quality, price and speed. We'll see you next time.

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