Case Study: How To Ruin Your Entire Business By Ignoring Obvious Facts
Once upon a time in Oregon, USA, there was a town called Bayocean that was located right next to the Pacific Ocean.
The year was 1906 when real estate developer T.B. Potter platted out a town on a sandy peninsula.
He sold 1600 lots and built a hotel, dance hall, post office, stores and swimming hall for the residents.
There were no roads leading to Bayocean.
You had to get there by boat, and the landing was treacherous, dangerous and terrifying as heck.
That’s why the residents decided to build a protective jetty.
The Army Corps of Engineers studied the place and told the town they needed not one, but two jetties, one on each side of the mouth of the bay.
The price was going to be $2.2 million, half of which the local residents would need to pay.
This is when the residents decided to save some money.
They didn’t have $1.1 million and they certainly couldn’t understand why they should build two jetties when one might be enough.
That’s why Bayocean’s soon-to-be-ex-homeowners paid half of $800,000 to get the single jetty built.
And for a while, things were good.
The steamship ride from the open ocean was much more pleasant and much less terrifying.
But there was a good reason why the Army Corps of Engineers said that TWO jetties were necessary because pretty soon the beach was a little smaller and then shortly thereafter a LOT smaller.
By building a single jetty, the ocean currents were changed and the land was eroding.
First, the beach disappeared.
Next, a massive storm destroyed the seaside swimming hall.
Soon the hotel started falling, room by room, into the sea.
Houses started disappearing.
The sandy cliffs were eroded from underneath and houses would crash into the sea and simply disappear with the next passing storm.
Finally, in the early 1970s, a second jetty was added. It solved the problem with the currents and the sand started building itself back up.
But it was too late for Bayocean, which by that time was entirely gone.
Like it had never been there.
If you visit the site today, you will find… nothing.
Not a single bit of concrete or brick remains.
Just pristine native coastline and a single sign to mark the location of the ultimate tribute to the consequences of taking half measures.
I don’t know where you are in your business.
But I guarantee that sometime in the very near future you will be called upon to make a decision.
You might choose to go the frugal route and save some money.
But keep in mind there could be dire consequences.
For example, you want to hire someone to handle some aspect of your business.
You could go the cheap route and save money. If doing so also causes you to lose traffic, conversions or sales, then was it worth it?
Every day we make decisions of whether to go the cheap route or the expensive route.
And sure enough, many times there really is no reason to pay more if you don’t have to.
But there are times when paying more can make the difference between prosperity or losing everything.
Folks in Bayocean lost everything for lack of a second jetty.
They lost their homes, their land and their community.
One poor resident was so distraught, he spent years hauling wheelbarrows of sand to the beach in an attempt to save his home, only to still lose it to the sea like everyone else in the community.
Next time you have a financial choice to make, remember Bayocean and choose carefully.