Robert Stevenson is one of the most widely recognized professional speakers in the world. Author of the books How To Soar Like An Eagle In A World Full Of Turkeys and 52 Essential Habits For Success, he’s shared the podium with esteemed figures from across the country, including former President George H.W. Bush, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, Anthony Robbins, Tom Peters and Steven Covey. Today, he travels the world, sharing powerful ideas for achieving excellence, both personally and professionally.

Whenever I work with the sales team of any organization, there is one specific question I like to ask that will tell me how skilled their salespeople are and how good their training has been. I always make sure to ask the question in a private setting.

“I have spoken to your top three competitors, and each of them have told me why I should do business with them. I would like to know why I should do business with you, instead. I want you to give me a two-minute commercial on what makes your company better than your competitors.”

You would be amazed at how many times I get awful answers to that question. With this in mind, I think it would be advisable for all companies to spend some time thinking about and carefully answering the following questions.

  1. What’s your competitive advantage?
  2. What are several ways your customer service stands out?
  3. Are there ways you can sell value instead of selling price?
  4. What makes you special?
  5. What will make your clients tell their friends about you?
  6. How can you deliver more than you promised to your client?
  7. Is there anything you do better than your competition?

You can take all seven questions and roll them into a single inquiry: What differentiates you from your competitors?

For example, there is a financial planner who has each client’s car detailed while he is conducting their annual review. I know a realtor who has an enormous lunch delivered to her clients when they move into the house they bought from

her on their move-in date. I even know a remodeling contractor who has his employees clean up the worksite every day to show the respect they have for the client’s home. When the job is done, he gives the client a giant ShopVac to reinforce the message. Would a plumber who put booties over his shoes before entering your home impress you? It sure impressed me.
Every business owner needs to ask themselves what they could do that would make them truly stand out from their competition.