Exciting games, extravagant lighting, loud sounds, multiple entertainment options and the desire to make big money real quick are some of the things that come to mind when we hear the term 'Casino'. However, casinos are more than just this. The casino industry can also teach you valuable lessons in order to be more adept and successful as a professional.
Whether you're running a large corporation, a small business or working at an individual level, vital business lessons can be learnt by studying businesses practices at casinos. You'd be amazed to know the sheer number of factors that are involved in making a casino run successfully. Every decision made is critical as it can mean the difference between making or losing money.
Modern day casinos are built like "cities within cities." You can gamble, eat, sleep, shop, and get entertained, all without ever having to leave the casino complex. This phenomena is called 'vertical integration' for the sake of maximizing revenues.
It takes a keen and watchful eye to learn something and there are indeed plenty of important lessons to be learnt from casinos that can be applied to your own professional repertoire.
Let's discuss what these important lessons are to help you get ahead as an individual professional or business.
1. Deadlines are Deadlines
In the casino industry, there are no ifs or buts; a deadline is a deadline and you have to meet them. Failure to meet deadlines can mean millions of dollars going down the drain, as casinos make money from the revenues generated using their patrons' money.
Casinos are huge business corporations. They are often financially backed by hotshot investors and financiers. Any delay in meeting deadlines can lead to major losses in revenues, and investors and backers are often quick to severe ties with casino owners at a moment's notice.
The same is the case with small and large businesses in general; you have to meet your deadlines. Moving forward and progressing in a business means proper planning, marketing, and production, which are all governed by deadlines. Failure to meet these deadlines will have dire consequences for the business.
In the casino industry particularly, when a date has been given, it must be adhered to. For example, right before the grand opening of a new casino, if developmental work is still not finished or the unit is not fully functional, the grand opening will still proceed as planned. And failure to complete development according to the proposed deadline could mean heavy losses in revenues on a daily basis, bad press and investors looking the other way without any hesitation.
On an individual level, we really should get in the habit of meeting deadlines. Be it at home or work. In professional life, however, failure to meet deadlines can have real-world consequences which can cost you your job, that bonus you've been chasing for months or a sought-after promotion.
2. Marketing is King
Marketing is a core business function as it generates and propels the business forward. Even though finance and human resource are important functions too, they are still regarded as 'support functions'. And as such, casinos spend an astronomical amount in terms of marketing which helps them attract a lot of customers and new investors too.
Therefore, this serves as an important lesson: without marketing, a business's profit margins and customer base will be limited. It's time to stop living in the penny-pinching culture and take the lead from casinos. Allocating a higher budget to marketing will result in greater revenues and a highly engaged customer base.
Another important lesson to learn from casino marketing strategies is that they are always looking to market themselves in innovative ways. Look to market your business in evolving and creative new ways. Study what works in your industry and incorporate the latest means available of promoting your business.
Small businesses often fall in the trap of stopping their marketing efforts once they reach a certain success level. This is not a good strategy as customers need to be consistently reminded about your products and services, to make them repeat buyers and sustain loyalty. Casinos attract a lot of new customers, thanks to their aggressive marketing strategies.
However, you should also keep in mind that there are certain laws casinos have to keep in mind, as there are bodies governing them - just like your business.
3. A Buzzing Environment
Casinos flourish because they are good at creating a very happening environment with a positive vibe. It's hard to be entertained in a dull and boring environment.
Casinos offer you a lot. If you are not interested in gambling, you can choose from a host of entertainment options. You can eat, drink and shop without ever having to leave the venue. This kind of entertainment access not only leads to higher revenues, but satisfied customers too, who do not mind putting down heavy loads of cash to take in the experience again and again.
By the way, did you know that you can also sleep at casinos if you are a loyal customer or high-stakes gambler? Some casinos include highly furnished rooms with exquisite views for their most valued customers.
Creating positivity is the key. A positive environment creates a feel- good factor which results in improved employee performance as they are better motivated to do their jobs.
4. Customer Service
Casinos make money every time people gamble and lose. However, if even the biggest casinos lack good customer service, people would not consider setting foot inside the premises, let alone lose their money on bad bets!
Casinos put an extra emphasis on customer satisfaction by training their staff, upgrading facilities from time to time, bringing in new games and expanding their entertainment offerings. Casinos are also very good at solving payout disputes since the entire casino cycle revolves around money and disputes are inevitable.
The points discussed above are of importance to any business, because without a stellar customer service, there can be no business at all. Strive to go the extra mile when it comes to pleasing and satisfying customers. A satisfied customer will always be willing to try out new products and services, irrespective of what it costs to experience them.
One important lesson to learn from casinos is their willingness to adapt. Casinos are always looking to update their gambling software and entertainment facilities, be it for improved gambling services or a boost in overall security. The management staff at casinos see to it that the ambiance stays fresh, either by re-arranging or bringing in new stuff. It's a constantly changing process that leans on the edge of innovation and creativity.
In this competitive world, businesses that are resistant to change will always fall behind. You need to build confidence to be able to do well. It is vital to foster creativity to satisfy both internal customers (employees) and external customers. It goes without saying, that highly satisfied customers will help you better achieve your targets and goals.
There are lots of other important lessons to learn from casinos both at an individual and collective business level. But the key takeaway is to have the willingness to educate oneself, without being judgemental. This will certainly help you in making better decisions with regard to your career or business.