I used to know a pub landlord who would regularly criticise the merits of certain rival establishments. At first I would take his caustic comments as worthy advice, and steer clear of said drinking-holes as if they were riddled with the plague. However, after a while I came to realise, he only criticised a rival pub when he considered them to be a genuine threat to his business.
So if I heard him commenting on the poor nature of another bar, I would purposely visit that pub, and you know what? More often than not, the pubs had great merit and were well worth the visit!
More importantly, my respect for my local pub landlord plummeted and I never listened to his advice again. In other words, in trying to kick his rivals he ended up kicking himself!
This is a trap that is easy to fall into with your own business, especially if you have close rivals vying for the same orders.
Never allow yourself to get involved in a war-of-words about your competitors – the only worth-while way to build good, sustainable business relationships is to focus on the benefits of your service, not the weaknesses of your competitors.
It’s not about trying to take the moral high-ground, but it is about making sure your own glass is double-glazed first rather than throwing stones at other people’s windows!
Next time, look out for…
L – Living the brand you are (whether you like it or not!)