Sunday, August 17, 2014

Over-Delivering: The Values & Why It’s So Hard

“You need to over-deliver.”

We keep hearing that we need to over-deliver, and most of us appreciate people and companies that do over-deliver.

Why do we like it so much?

We don’t expect it.  It genuinely creates a feeling of “Wow!” inside us, even if only might vocalize our appreciation for getting such a good product or service.

So why do so few of us over-deliver?

Meeting Expectations

First, to explain this properly it probably makes sense to take a few steps backwards.

Let’s ask ourselves, what does it mean to under-deliver?

To under-deliver, we come short of meeting people’s expectations.

Essentially, it seems like people’s satisfaction level comes from what we deliver versus the expectations they have for us.

So the REAL question to ask is…What are people really expecting?

For this, it does not matter whether they “should” expect something.  If they expect it, they will judge us—or at least judge our performance—based on what they’re expecting.

So when we meet expectations, there is only a certain amount of satisfaction…on both sides.

To summarize, when we meet expectations, we complete the order or request as expected.

“Thank you very much,” and we head to the next thing, barely thinking about what we just finished.

Exceeding Expectations: The Barriers

So to “exceed” expectations, we have to do more than they expect.

That sounds great in theory, but there are a couple of problems.

1. They did not pay us for anything more than we gave them.

2. We need to spend our time working on completing the next order.

The biggest barrier to over-delivering—for most people—is they do not see the value in it.

“If I’m not getting paid, why should I do it?”
“I don’t have time.  I have to work on other stuff.”

The Hidden Values in Over-Delivering

People who over-deliver understand the value of it.  People who do not over-deliver do not.

So, what are the values of over-delivering that only some people seem to see?

Do you notice that—in our everyday personal lives—we tend to brag about people who do things better than others?  We brag about companies that are the best.

You don’t get to be the “best” by doing what everyone else is doing.

You become the best by doing things other people or companies are not willing to do…or simply cannot do.

We cannot control our raw talent levels, but we CAN control our effort.  Often, the “extra effort” is all it takes to be considered amongst “the best.”

People pay more for the best.  They might not pay you more for dong that one extra thing today, but people and companies that are known for going “above and beyond” can sell their products or services for more.

When you do what you are “supposed to do,” you become a “me too” offering.

When you do MORE than you’re supposed to do, people talk about you more.  People eventually will pay you for it more.

So the best people don’t see “doing extra” as doing extra.  They see “doing extra” as an investment in the future…of their reputation and their potential future income.

If you don’t see these, you will likely avoid over-delivering, because you don’t have the time, and you don’t want to spend the cost.

Most people think like this.  Are you willing to spend time telling other people how great they are?  Are you willing to pay them any extra?

More importantly, do you really want to be one of those people that overlooks the value of over-delivering?

The good news is that if you’ve made it this far, you probably already have the traits of someone who over-delivers.  Otherwise, you would have left before now.  I look forward to learning about your future.

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