The 5 Biggest Mistakes Businesses Are Making Today: Cutting Costs

Editor’s Note: Humetrics CEO Mel Kleiman has been helping employers recruit, select, and retain frontline employees & managers for over 30 years. He knows what works — and what doesn’t. Today he starts to examine “The 5 Biggest Mistakes Businesses Are Making Today.”

By Mel Kleiman

Mistake #1: Cutting costs and/or services to increase or maintain profits.

Yes, there probably is fat that can be trimmed and we need to look at every line item expense, but what we cannot do is compromise the customer experience.

Most everyone I talk to is focused on cost-cuts these days when, in reality, we’ve been micro-managing where every penny goes for years anyway.

Ask: How do we improve profits?

What I’m suggesting is that now is an opportune time to tackle this differently. Take a look at the other side of the coin and ask: “How do we improve profits?” You’ll get an entirely different set of answers and ideas.

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Here’s what happens when you compromise the customer experience: My wife, Roberta, and I were staying in Las Vegas at the Rio and we stopped by the coffee shop, as we usually do, about 11 a.m. one morning looking for something to eat. Upon arrival, we found the coffee shop hours had been changed from 7 a.m. – 3 p.m. to 7 a.m. – noon, which you wouldn’t think would be a problem since we were there at 11 a.m.

However, besides reducing staff and hours of operation, we discovered they thought they would save even more money by offering only a breakfast menu instead of breakfast and lunch. That’s fine for Roberta, but I’m not a breakfast person. I was looking forward to a burger. We walked out.

Do not even consider anything that would reduce the customer experience. Now, more than ever, we have to “wow” the customer (who, as you know, is choosing carefully where every penny goes). Anything that diminishes the customer experience will have long-term, negative effects.

This was originally published on Mel Kleiman’s Humetrics blog.

Mel Kleiman, CSP, is an internationally-known authority on recruiting, selecting, and hiring hourly employees. He has been the president of Humetrics since 1976 and has over 30 years of practical experience, research, consulting and professional speaking work to his credit. Contact him at


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