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Be Proud of your Price and Service

The thoughts of Richard Osborne on many subjects over the years.

Be Proud of your Price and Service

As I come into work this morning I had an email reply from a proposal I’d prepared for a prospective customer of one of my businesses. The business itself isn’t important, but the prospects approach to me says a lot of things about their approach to business.

The proposal I had drafted clearly demonstrated some time savings we could give to their business, and based on some figures they had supplied me I could also demonstrate a small cost saving too. Not a lot but still a cost saving. The time savings for their business though would be potentially very significant, which to me can be worth more than money itself!

This morning I opened my email and, edited to protect the innocent, stated along the lines of “Your proposal is not viable for our business, but if you half your monthly charges and we will not pay any setup charges we’ll give it a go.”

I was rather shocked by this, even with my bias opinion and complete and utter belief in the service of my company, our solution was a no-brainer for them. Nonetheless, I feel I have something to share about this experience, and one thing that I have previous spoken about regards Getting your Prices Right.

Firstly, how does this person value their time in their business? I’ll give you two examples, the first being an employee scenario of a manager I employ had trouble delegating their work out instead holding onto everything. My response was that for as long as you don’t train someone else up to do your job I cannot promote you any higher in the organisation! What about with the business owner, if you don’t value your time and take steps to allow you to work on your business instead of in your business (same-old same-old) then you are not going anywhere and you’ll always be a lifestyle business. That is fine if that is what you want, but when the time comes to retire if your business completely relies on you then you are not getting much of a retirement fund from the sale of your business. Again, I have covered this in the past regarding Whether Your Business Needs You.

I naturally decided to decline the kind offer to supply the service for half price, because I’m proud of our service and I’m proud of our price. I have researched our competition and I know our position and share of the market. I know the SWOT of what we provide and take that into account, and so long as you know where your business stands don’t let yourself be beaten up on price. At the end of the day you need to make a profit to be in business, and you should be proud of that.

If all you have to compete on is price in your business then you potentially have a problem, don’t let yourself get into that situation.

One Comment

  1. Avatar
    Graham mann
    Apr 9, 2010

    I read your article with interest,i have had similiar situations many times,you are spot on,turnover is vanity!! i see companies in a simliar market to ours,buying business,then they say look at us we work for A Prestigious plc, and make no pfofit!! i have manipulated my competitors into reducing their fees,they win the project make little profit,give a poor service,then they recieve poor reviews and we pick up the projects on our terms!