Why You Don’t Want a Level Playing FieldPeople in business often use the cliché, “a level playing field” to express their desire for a fair and equitable marketplace in which to compete. But who the hell really wants that?

If you’re competing with four other companies for a customer and you each have a “fair” and “equal” chance of succeeding, that means you only have a 20% chance of closing the deal! Why would you settle for that???

If you want to boost your sales, you want to play on a field that is tilted in your favor. Preferably so slanted that you almost can’t help but win the business.

And the good news is that the ability to tilt the playing field lies firmly in your control! There are numerous ways you can ethically create an advantage in the marketplace, including:

• Better product or service
• Unique product or service
• Better marketing
• More marketing
• Better publicity
• Longer warranties
• Stronger guarantees
• More locations
• More convenience
• Larger selection
• More salespeople
• More sales training
• Longer hours
• More customer service people
• Better customer service policies
• More customer service training
• Faster response times
• Better customer experience
• More customer appreciation
• Better employee pay
• Better employee working conditions
• More community outreach
• More charity support

You can begin to improve any of these areas immediately. And you can get plenty of help in these endeavors. Hire a consultant to help improve your innovation, quality, or marketing. Bring in a speaker or trainer to train your sales and service teams. Hire a coach to work with your leaders to enable them to create a more effective, more successful, more profitable company.

Please note that I am by no means suggesting that you should lie, cheat, or do anything illegal to give yourself an edge. Unethical behavior has no place in business.

What I am suggesting is that you look for ways to outperform your competitors. How can you make your company the clear choice, the easy choice, the obvious choice? How can you raise your organization so far above the competition that they wish they had a level playing field?