This was the beginning of the internet era and I was working for a company as a pre-sales head.
We were on a journey to drive our market share from 0% to more than 70% in 3-4 years and our main competitor was 10x mightier than us and a much bigger brand but we were winning with our focus, highlighting product benefits and genuine customer support.
In 2002, we got an opportunity to bid for an end to end solution and we were losing, as, one of the elements in the solution wasn’t a core product for us.
We had to win this one without question.
We were digging, brainstorming and burning the midnight oil but no luck.
The tender had got scuttled a few times already due to various reasons and stress was mounting and clearly showing.
This was the final bid and we got to something interesting.
Our competitor had been harping on superiority of their products and one of the main features was the ability to store 1 million route entries in the database embedded in the hardware.
We dug deeper and discovered that the hardware did not even have enough “memory” to store the million entries. And there it was -they were making up features to win. The rest is history.
We gave the details to the customer, customer asked the competitor to prove it's feature claim, competitor couldn’t prove and lost customer's faith, we won !!
Moral of the story - Size does not matter. No matter what’s at stake, don’t lose integrity and ensure to understand the competitor's product/solution as much as your own !
Himanshu is a transformative business leader with three decades of experience in the telecom industry. He is currently the managing director of Syniverse and has extensive experience working in MNC’s like Microsoft, IBM, and CISCO. He polished his management skills studying at the University of Chicago Booth school of business and INSEAD, an extensive education program in strategy, finance, and general business. He is also an angel investor and believes startups can solve the job crisis of India.