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You Are More Than You Think You Are

by Doug Davidoff | May 16, 2007 1:06:45 PM

Yesterday, I began working with a new client to map out their go-to-market strategy using what we call The INTELLIGENT GROWTH Blueprint™.

We started talking about their company’s value proposition and they started telling me about all the ‘stuff’ they do.  They told me about “on-time delivery” and “defect-free products.”  While I agreed that these were important attributes, they were clearly not compelling promises.  The things they were focused on seemed more like simply requirements to compete.  The owner even said to me later in the conversation, “You know you’re right.  It’s not at all unusual for us to win a performance reward from a company and lose the next bid because someone else was a little less expensive.  It seems that once you meet that minimum threshold, performance no longer matters.”

As the discussion progressed, I got the executive team to stop looking at the world from their own corporate point of view and begin considering what the world looked like to their customers.  They started to realize that their value proposition dealt more than anything else with their ability to provide unique or customized solutions to complex design issues.  They began to see what made them different was not their products, per se, but their ability to understand a customer’s total situation.  But more than that, they realized that they were also very good at understanding their customer’s customer’s needs. Later in the Blueprint process, we reviewed their current website.  As we did, they realized that all it talked about was their stuff.  Suddenly, the disconnect between what they thought was important and what mattered to their customers became obvious.

On top of that, it dawned on them that their innovation opportunities could be significantly greater than they originally thought.  Working from their customers’ perspective, they were no longer ‘limited’ by the products they sold.  Their playing field now was actually all of the problems their Best Few Clients™ have.

Let me leave you one piece of advice -- If I could boil everything I’ve written in The Fast Growth Blog™ into just one idea, it would be this:  manage your company from your Best Few Clients’ perspective and your potential for growth and profitability is unlimited.