Have you ever wondered what you actually do in your business and what are you really selling? Do you offer a service, or are you providing a solution? The saying goes, that a person in a hardware shop is not looking to purchase a drill, but the hole the drill makes. Once you realise what you actually do in your business and what are you really selling, you can start to change the way things are done in order to offer an improved service.
Darren Finkelstein, better known as ‘The Boat Guy’, has a history of working with and selling boats in Sydney. However his personal success really took off once he realised that his business was not just selling and maintaining boats, but providing the opportunity for families and friends to strengthen their relationships and bond together through the boating experience. He then proceeded to build his business with that goal in mind and the rest, as they say, is history.
What do you offer?
Think about exactly what it is that you offer clients. What do you sell in your business – is it a product or a service, or perhaps a solution for your client’s problems? By focusing on what your business provides, you can take decisions that grow your company to making it better.
I coach and consult with companies across a wide range of industries, and when I work on a business, I always do so with the solution in mind, rather than the process. Most business owners requesting to work with me have a goal in mind to improve the company’s profitability or implement more effective operational processes in Sales, Marketing, Strategic Management or Human Resources.
Using the analogy of selling drills in the market, when I meet with the stakeholders, I help them realise that the result of a higher profitability (i.e. the drill) is a means to providing something that their clients actually want (i.e. the hole). Identifying what they want, and how to achieve it has led to a change in the intended direction of the business on more than one occasion. I am acutely aware that I am not just there to ‘make things better’ (buy the drill), but also to identify how the business can actually achieve want the stakeholders want in the business and to improve the solutions provided to their clients (create the hole).
Have you identified the ‘hole’ that you want your business to achieve? Are you aware of the type of hole, its depth and other characteristics? If you are, you may actually discover that you may need something other than a drill to achieve your aim. This how you discover what are you really selling.