Our business is coming up on its 7 year anniversary at the end of December. This was a dream that I had going back to the first few races over 16 years ago. The goal was to build a business that would provide services to non-profits and help them raise much needed funds through racing. We have helped a lot of non-profits during that time. Many non-profits struggle every day just to keep their doors open. When I started this business, the idea was to provide services at a very competitive rate that would allow them to maximize their revenue. It has cost us a lot over the years as we continue to keep our costs below market, but it is my heartfelt belief that it is for a good cause. Sure, we are in business to make a profit but not at the expense of the customers we serve. We are a single focused business. We don’t use our timing to supplement our retail operation as we have none. We believe that this should be our sole focus. We’re dedicated exclusively to race management and timing.
There is not a week that goes by where we don’t get a call from an organization desiring to put on a race. The first thing that we always do is talk about the budget and their goals. We actually talk a lot of organizations out of doing it. We don’t want the business if it is not going to be good for them as well. This is a really tough business and many don’t fully appreciate the work and expense it takes to produce a successful event. It is our firm belief that we are partners with the race and should do whatever we can to ensure its success. If the race doesn’t do well, then neither should we.
There are several very successful races that we have been involved with from day one. It is always a sense of pride to see a race grow and become successful. We try to go above and beyond to help them year over year. Most organizations come to us at first without a single concept of what it takes to produce an event. Most experience is simply from having run a race and thinking it would be cool to do their own. It is a lot of fun for us to help them build that event and turn it into something that is not only a great race but also achieves the goals that they want.
As we have helped races grow, we have also been taken advantage of along the way. It is always disappointing to have a race that you help start and grow to then move to a competitor. We devote countless hours often for free along with donated equipment to make sure that they can get started and be successful. We know that once they become successful, we will be a willing partner and each share in the other's success. We are willing to donate our time and equipment because we know that it will pay off over time. We have certainly had a few of those organizations do that to us and it always hurts. Sometimes they move to a competitor simply because the competitor offers some kind of sponsorship. Sometimes it is for nothing more than a board member desiring to work with a friend or family member. In most cases, capabilities or service offerings have nothing to do with it. I have no issue with companies that go through a bid process and we lose out, but that is just business. To simply change vendors with no cause or justification is beyond me. Loyalty should certainly be a factor.
Fortunately for us and most of our competitors, most organizations are loyal to the people that bring them to the dance. Whether it is a vendor providing t-shirts, awards, management support, or timing services such as ours, they try to stay with the organizations year over year. When things don’t work out or they need additional services, they at least attempt to work it out with their current vendors before moving on. Those customers deserve respect.
If you are an organization looking to grow your race, give us a call. We’ll do everything in our power to help with your success.
See you at the race!