What value do you really provide?
What value do you really provide to your customers, organization, or whomever you are providing a product or service? Do you know or do you just think you know? You may provide a product (or service) that is very unique, or you deliver it in such a unique way that it provides value to those who purchase the product; but do you truly understand why they buy?
We often become self-delusional on the value we provide, thinking it is because we, or our product, are so superior the customer has no other choice. But have we asked our customers? And have they told us the truth? Have we been truly self-reflective and gone deep to find the answer?
It may be that the product is great. It may be that the service is outstanding. It may be that the ambiance and atmosphere are terrific. Do you know? Do you even care? As long as people are buying, then why does it matter?
One reason it might matter is when demand exceeds capacity, and you want to expand, are you expanding for the right reason? For example, say you own a small restaurant that is always packed and has a great buzz. You see the long lines and wait, and decide it’s time to expand. The space next door is larger, and available, so you go for it, investing lots of time and money to grow the business. At first it goes well, but after a while, you notice the restaurant is not even 1/3 full. What happened?
The question you needed to answer is why did people come to my restaurant? Was it the food, the service, or was it the ambiance and exclusivity? If you thought it was the food and service, but was really the fact that people had to wait to get in, and it had a great ambiance (which you destroyed when you expanded), then you chose…poorly.
So ask questions, be inquisitive, find out what your customers really think, but also take a good look in the mirror and ask yourself, “Why would I buy from me; what value to I really provide?”