If you have what Strategic Coach Dan Sullivan calls a “Unique Process,” you are way ahead of your competition in differentiation. Your brand promise IS that you will deliver the outcomes that your process inevitably produces. The illustration to your left is a replica of The Whale Hunters Process™. It consists of three stages–Scout, Hunt, and Harvest–within which there are nine specific steps: Know, Seek, Harpoon, Tide, Capture, Sew, Beach, Honor, Celebrate. The arrows suggest that these are gears turning as you move from one step to the next. This process belongs exclusively to The Whale Hunters and is a unique value that our competitors cannot bring to the marketplace.
Dan Sullivan is a major reason that we created this stable, replicable process and have invested in visual representations of it. When I participated in Dan’s strategic coaching program for entrepreneurs, I learned about the value of a process as a means to avoid commoditization; maybe “sales training” is a commodity, but “The Whale Hunters Process” is not–it’s a value statement. A unique process is also a way to get paid sooner–you can demonstrate value from the very beginning. Dan Sullivan began his career as a coach to insurance agents. He is fond of saying, “You give away your wisdom, and at the end you get paid for a commodity.” Dan believes you should get paid for your wisdom.
I have had many consultants and sales trainers as well as sales VPs tell me that they have always done what The Whale Hunters Process calls for. And in a way I am sure they’re right. It wasn’t invented out of thin air–it was invented to represent sensible, workable steps that will lead to the desired outcome of bigger sales made to bigger customers. But in the marketplace, customers are far more likely to pay the company that has put their process into words and pictures and has invested in visualizing, inventing, organizing, and teaching a process than the company that simply says “we know how to grow your sales.”
So as you are determining your brand promise, think about your process and how you could make it more prominent as a way to differentiate.
Do you have a unique process? I would love to hear about it!