Leadership Comes from Your Unique Selling Proposition

By Doug Staneart, CEO of The Leader’s Institute

Great Seats at Cowboy Stadium

I’m a big football fan! For the last few years, I’ve driven by the new Dallas Cowboy Stadium in Arlington while it was under construction, and I’ve been in awe of the size and scope of the place. All year long, I’ve been hearing about the record crowds of over 100,000 people attending the games, the $20 part passes, and the HUGE screen in the ceiling.

Well, last weekend, I finally got to experience the stadium in person for the first time. Now, I got pretty good seats, and could see every part of the game without much trouble. However, every once in a while, the plays would be on the other side of the field, and it was great to be able to look up into that huge screen and see all of the details. In fact, it was difficult to NOT look at the screen. It was pretty mezmorizing.

My daughter, who is eight, thought it might be more fun to go up into the top deck, though, to see some of the game, so at halftime, we went on a walk-about. We went to the endzones where all of the lounge areas were, and we could still see all of the details on the field. We went of to the third deck, and could still see very well. We went all the way up to the top row of the top deck, and after getting a little woozy from the altitude, we looked right down onto the field and could see everything. And right above the field was the HUGE screen with all of the details.

That’s when it hit me. Jerry Jones, the owner of the Cowboys, spent about a billion dollars on the stadium focusing on all of the details, but the thing that everyone remembers (and talks about) is the screen. I thought that was kind of strange since you could stay at home and watch the game on TV for free if you wanted to see it on a screen, but that’s beside the point. That screen is Jones’ Unique Selling Proposition (USP). It’s the one thing that his client (the ticket holders) can’t get anywhere else in the world. Right now, that USP is making him the go to leader in the NFL.

Great leaders understand this concept, and they strive very hard to create their USP in their companies and their industries. The good news is that you don’t have to spend a billion dollars to develop your USP. All you have to do is find some way to master a specific part of your job or industry. For instance, if you are a retail store manager, perhaps your Unique Selling Proposition is that you NEVER have more than three people in any cashier line. How many people will go out of their way to go to your store versus your competitor’s. Or if you are a doctor, maybe your USP is that you never let anyone wait past their appointment time before being seen. How many patients will drive a little farther because they know they won’t have to sit in a boring waiting room reading three year old magazines.

To identify your USP and become the go to leader in your industry, just ask yourself, “What do people hate most about my (product/industry/position)?” Then figure out some way solve that problem. Jerry Jones figured that if he was going to cram 100,000 people into a stadium, someone was going to not be able to see the game very well. He figured out a solution, and that solution created the buzz that is driving millions of people to his games.

Doug Staneart is a keynote speaker based in Dallas, Texas. He teaches leadership training classes and is author of the book 28 Ways to Influence People.

Author: Doug Staneart, Date Published: December 1, 2009

Doug Staneart is president of The Leader's Institute ®. He is based in the Dallas, Texas Region. He is a specialist in corporate team building activities and custom presentation skills seminars.

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