My first neighbor in northern Minne-snowta was an electrician. Every morning when I drove off to work this bold slogan on the side of his service truck declared this simple message. Electricians were competitive in the area and my neighbor wasn’t the low dollar on a bid. But he was always busy. Why?

Customers don’t understand the cost without the value. If you talk cost before value, the slide to commodity is fast and frustrating. Life in the commodity fast lane is a race to the bottom. That’s not a race you want to win, or even come in second.

Bringing something premium to people is better. And it can be more challenging to find investors. I say investors because these people realize they will get a return on their decision to change to your product or service.

Establishing value before weighing the cost is true for other parts of life as well. Like choosing to enter a treatment program and begin healing from addictions. This can be a very tough sell because it’s not a buying decision… it’s a decision to change deeply engrained habits of thought and action. All adults see is the cost and it usually seems to expensive to invest in health and life as a whole person.

For the addict, the value can come from counting the cost of not changing. It can be a delicate dance that comes with love and honest talks that may seem endless. But layer by layer, the lure of quality begins to outweigh the cost of re-wiring brain, body and soul to love life without the poison.

It’s especially hard if you are hanging in there with a family member. Tough love is a basic tool in the box that comes out often. As with customers, the addict has to own the idea and the value before they will pay the price of quality. You can’t tell, sell, and hope it gels. That’s where patience come in.

In both cases, we genuinely believe the other person’s life will be better with the quality you provide. So keep talking and helping the people placed in your life to connect the dots and make the connection. Going premium is worth the cost when we invest in each other.

Life is a team sport. Help your team find investors in quality.