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Craftspeople are about quality. They make their wares by hand. Their own two hands. The attention to detail–the caring–is literally part of their creation. The revisions, the do-overs, the work that is abandoned because it isn’t good enough is what separates a craftsperson from the poseur, the hobbyist, the amateur, and the person who does something simply to scale it up and sell it.

When something is created by hand, the deep caring that is poured into the work allows the creator to deliver what is exceptional, what is exquisite, what is excellent. It’s difficult to scale attention to detail, and it’s even more difficult to scale caring (even though it can–and is–being done).

Dilution of Care

The act of scaling beyond a certain point is a dilution of quality.

Scale is the decision to serve more people. This means swapping “by hand” for more efficient means. Efficiency is the choice of speed over quality. It’s trading exceptional, exquisite, and excellent for “good enough. Scale doesn’t mean that something isn’t good, useful, or even that it isn’t worth buying. But it does mean that trade-offs were made.

The Retention of What Is Exceptional

To retain exceptional, exquisite, and excellence, you have to make greater investments, investments that kill efficiency. You have to hire more people to create high touch, high value, and high caring. You have to keep slack in the system when your competitors are working on becoming leaner. The decisions you make because of your choice of strategy must look like madness to your competitors.

Exceptional takes more investments in time, money, and caring. Good enough is about being efficient.

Not Everything Need Be

Not everything needs to be exceptional. What one person values enough to pay more to obtain, another person perceives as a commodity.

If it is your model, your strategy, is to differentiate by creating what is exceptional, then scaling will require greater and greater investments, and those investments will require that you price your offering to deliver that. That means you are going to have to ask your clients to pay for inefficiencies, for slack, for high caring. They are going to have to pay for things to be done by hand.

In many markets, the middle is getting pulled apart. Companies–and their leaders–are being forced to choose to compete on price and begin a gradual race to the bottom or serve the higher end of the market instead. Scaling mostly means dilution of quality and moving down from exceptional.

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Sales 2016
Post by Anthony Iannarino on August 19, 2016

Written and edited by human brains and human hands.

Anthony Iannarino

Anthony Iannarino is an American writer. He has published daily at thesalesblog.com for more than 14 years, amassing over 5,300 articles and making this platform a destination for salespeople and sales leaders. Anthony is also the author of four best-selling books documenting modern sales methodologies and a fifth book for sales leaders seeking revenue growth. His latest book for an even wider audience is titled, The Negativity Fast: Proven Techniques to Increase Positivity, Reduce Fear, and Boost Success.

Anthony speaks to sales organizations worldwide, delivering cutting-edge sales strategies and tactics that work in this ever-evolving B2B landscape. He also provides workshops and seminars. You can reach Anthony at thesalesblog.com or email Beth@b2bsalescoach.com.

Connect with Anthony on LinkedIn, X or Youtube. You can email Anthony at iannarino@gmail.com

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