Try This: Think Like A Grocery Store

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Service, quality, price. You’ve got to be good at two, and best at the other one.  That’s the philosophy that guides Publix CEO Ed Crenshaw and their financials, high customer sat and low employee turnover speak for themselves.

This is such an interesting idea to me. In fact, I’d define the value you provide customers as the sum of quality, service and price.

How does your wellness business prioritize service, quality and price?

Which one are you best at?

And are you absolutely confident your business is genuinely good at the other two?

For Planet Fitness, the answer is clearly price, then service and quality.

At the Gold’s I just joined, I’d actually say quality first, then price and service. Quality because the mix of available fitness experiences is the best in my area. They have equipment no one else offers, like the AMT, and programs like CardioTheater than no other health club here in Dallas offers. And at least at this one, the service experience is good (they take CardioTheater movie requests) and the price is reasonable (once you consider the American Diabetes Association discount my husband got us!).

At Weight Watchers, most members would probably say quality or service is what they’re best at – I think quality would have the edge.

I live near the best-run McDonald’s I’ve ever visited, anywhere – and the folks at this particular location provide good service by any standard and certainly by fast food standards. I’ve seen them routinely hand-deliver coffee and breakfast to an extremely rickety older guy who stakes out the same booth every morning and makes his coffee last for hours. But at the end of the day, it’s still McDonald’s and price is the name of the game.

I thought about this question in regard to Radial as I wrote this post, too. For Radial, my answer is that quality is at the top of our list. We’re definitely not cheap, so I can’t say price is at the top of our list. Reasonable for the value we provide, but definitely an investment. Our service is very good – but not perfect. Sometimes we get crunched on lots of projects at once and our turnaround’s a little slower than we think it ought to be. But clients tell me all the time that “this is worth every penny.” That, to me, speaks to quality most of all.

Tell me how you’d classify your business on this scale. What’s “best” for you? Price, quality or service? And are you at least good at the other two?

What’s important to your customers? And do you even agree that these are the three dimensions that matter most?

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