Yesterday I got a large mailer from a company called 3-Day Kitchen & Bath. The name of the company says it all. These folks promise—and deliver, I might add—a remarkable service in the eyes of their customers. As Seth Godin said, they "stand out like a purple cow in a field of brown cows."
From a System Thinker's point of view, all they did was change the ordinary kitchen remodeling procedure to an extraordinary new remodeling system—and then built an entire business around it. They achieved the kind of results we are all looking for.
- The offer (in the business name) is a powerful magnet to attract new customers.
- The service leaves customers delighted and amazed.
- The three-day job-efficiency pushes costs down and profits up.
- Customers are eager to show and refer their friends.
- The quick job-cycle creates an abundant cash flow.
- The company owns its market niche.
3-Day Kitchen & Bath performs the same remodeling tasks as traditional construction companies. You may not be able to see a difference in the finished job; however, there is a huge difference in the way the work is accomplished!
The company pre-plans the job down to the last detail, and purchases all materials before construction begins. They have a specialized crew that can install cabinets, counter tops, flooring, appliances and so forth. They work extra hours on the three critical days. At the end of the third day, as the paint is drying, they pick up their check and say good-bye to their thrilled and grateful customers.
What Business System Can You Innovate?
3-Day Kitchen & Bath challenged the normal method of kitchen and bathroom remodeling. They asked, "How can we perform this service so fast that our customer's primary objections to remodeling—completion time, construction mess, and inconvenience—are totally eliminated. They figured out how to do the seemingly impossible, and turn it into a daily routine!
Increasing speed significantly beyond market norms is one secret to having a remarkable business system. One-Hour Photo did it. Federal Express did it.
Twenty-five years ago, an enterprising group in our community decided to build a basic split-level home in twenty-four hours. I drove by and watched for a while. It was an incredible sight!
Years later, I suggested to one of my home-building customers that they create a system for completing a standard home in thirty days from the time of customer purchase. They said it couldn't be done, and barely survived with conventional methods in a competitive market.
Ah, But It Could Be Done!
You have to think outside the box, and question common practices. Sometimes, you have to do things that are hard to do. Most often, you have to elevate your core business systems or processes to something remarkable.
"Dare to be great!" When you do, you can achieve similar benefits as 3-Day Kitchen & Bath. Review them again. Consider the business system or process you could change to shake up your marketplace.
Remember: It's all in the SYSTEM!