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So You Think You Are Different?

By Stephen Tweed

PrintSo you think you are different?  Several months ago, I was on a sales call with the owner of a successful home care company in the Midwest.  I was there to lead the home care team through a
strategic planning process. The owner called the day before and said he had to set up an appointment with a very important prospect for the next day and would it be OK if we took a break from our planning so he could keep this appointment.

He asked me if I would accompany him on the sales call.

One of the first questions this rather sophisticated referral source asked was, “What makes your company different from all of the other home care companies in our town?”

The owner was caught off guard for a moment, and then gave him several generic responses. The prospect said, “That’s nice, but what really makes you different?  Your competitors say all those same things.”

The owner of the company was totally stumped.  He looked at me for help, but we had just begun our planning and I couldn’t help him very much.

When we got back to the office we spent much of the rest of the day really working on the answer to that question.  “What really makes you different from the other home care companies in town?”

Competitive Advantage

 The reality in home care is …

  • Most home care services are perceived as the same
  • Most home care companies are perceived as the same
  • Most home care sales reps are perceived as the same

There is no difference between you and your competition unless your customer perceives a difference.

The Seven Sources of Competitive Advantage

 Back in 1990 when I wrote my first commercially published book, Strategic Focus: A Gameplan for Developing Competitive Advantage, I talked about the Five Sources of Competitive Advantage.  Over the years, I’ve expanded that to Seven Sources of Competitive Advantage.

These seven sources can be applied to any business. They are:

  1. Product Differentiation
  2. Service Differentiation
  3. Narrow Market Focus
  4. Relationships
  5. Exceptional Customer Experiences
  6. Common Values
  7. Low Price

Applying the Seven Sources of Competitive Advantage to Home Health Care, Hospice, and Private Duty Home Care

 After speaking to hundreds of audiences and leading strategic planning retreats for over 500 different organizations about the concept of competitive advantage, I have been able to refine these concepts specifically for the home care and hospice industry.  Here are the seven sources of competitive advantage for home health care and hospice.

  • Superior Patient Outcomes
  • Exceptional Customer Experiences
  • Caregiver Quality
  • Personal Relationships
  • Organizational Relationships
  • Relationship Selling
  • Brand Awareness

The seven sources are slightly different for private duty home care. As you know, private duty is a very different business from home health care. Many agencies have tried to mix the two and have failed miserably. The most successful home health agencies that have private duty business have separated the two.

Here are the seven sources of competitive advantage for private duty home care.

  • Caregiver Quality
  • Exceptional Customer Experiences
  • Person to Person Relationships
  • Organization to Organization Relationships
  • Relationship Selling
  • Brand Awareness
  • Specialized Programs and Services

Learn More About how to Apply These Strategies.

Reading about these strategies is great.  Applying them is more difficult.  We’d like to give you an opportunity to get more insights into these ideas, and to sct-3fingers-Small-web-sizeinteract with other home care and hospice leaders who are facing the same issues you will be facing.  I’ll be presenting several worships and seminars over the next few months where you can sharpen your ax, and hone your skills

The next program on our calendar is on September 15 and 16 in Altoona, Pennsylvania when I’ll be speaking at the 2015 National Customer Forum sponsored by Delta Health Technologies.  Delta is a long-time Resource Partner of The Academy for Private Duty Home Care and Leading Home Care.  I’ve been honored to present at their national customer forum for the past four years.

This year, I’ll be presenting two interactive workshops.  You are welcome to attend even if you are not a Delta Health Technologies user. You can also attend from the comfort of your own office, if you can’t attend in person.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015 – 12:15 to 3:30 pm – “Dare to be Different”

Wednesday, September 16, 2015 – 9:00 am to 12:15 pm – “Six Secrets of Selling Home Care Services”

Both of these programs have been tailored to fit leaders in home health, hospice, and private duty home care.

To Register:

Register Now

NOTE: On the registration page, enter your name and email and select “Private Duty Provider” from the drop-down to register for Stephen’s sessions for $49 each.  (You can contact Jill Scott, if you have any questions or problems registering.)

Download your Free Research Report

Not only is Delta Health Technologies making this workshop available to you at a VERY reasonable registration fee, but they have also sponsored a Research Dare to Be Diff CoverReport on Dare to Be Different. You can download this report at no cost by following this link.

Free download

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