How Muhammad Ali changed my business

Angelo Dundee was one of the greatest boxing trainers in the history of America.

One day someone asked Dundee, “Who is the hardest-working athlete you ever trained?”

He didn’t say the best.

He said the hardest-working.

Dundee said, “Oh, that’s easy. Muhammad Ali.”

“Muhammad Ali was head and shoulders above everybody else in work ethic.”

Now I knew Ali was great, but I didn’t know he was that hard a worker.

I was motivated to learn more about him.

And I found this quote from Muhammad Ali.

He said, “I hated every minute of training, but I said to myself, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now, and I could spend the rest of my life as a champion.’”

That quote inspired me.

I knew that I did not want my business to be just like everyone else’s.

To be thought of the same way most carpet cleaners are thought of: as a commodity.

Where most customers do not see any difference between one carpet cleaning company and another.

Except on price.

I refused to have my company thought of, treated like or perceived as a commodity.

Because that, my friend, is just a race to the bottom.

And even if you win you lose because your making sales but not making profits.


I decided long ago I would adopt Muhammad Ali’s attitude.

To spend hours and hours researching.


Getting frustrated.

All in an effort to know exactly what it would take to get a customer to spend a premium with me rather than the cheapest or middle of the road price my competitors offered.

Kind of like the difference between getting them to buy Mercedes instead of a Kia.

If you are going to get people to spend $10-$20+/sqft instead $1-$3/sqft you cannot be like everyone else.

And how do you do that?

Well I discovered it’s not just one thing.

It’s several things working together to produce a perception in the mind of the customer they are coming to someplace “special”.

Someplace that makes them INSTANTLY know they have come to the right place.

A place they can TRUST.

What do you need to do create that kind of impression?

Well let me ask you this…

When customers come to you, do they

  • walk in and instantly know & feel you love rugs and what you do?
  • have incredible social proof you are THE place to bring their rugs?
  • feel their rug (no matter what kind it is) has increased in value after listening to you?
  • represent the most highest value and most affluent customers in your market?

If you answered no to any of these questions then you’re likely selling Kias and not Mercedes (metaphorically speaking).

Which means you probably have not been able to break the $10/sqft barrier.

But that’s ok.

You might like duking it out in a marketplace saturated with competitors who are just like you.

Not me – I wanted to rise above them all.

After all that time, effort and energy I did before to figure out how to win at this game, I also discovered something surprising.

My competitors are afraid of going after the highest value and most affluent customers in my city.

The kind of customers who are the most profitable, have the most disposable income and the most wealthiest friends.

These people scare the pants off them.

Because they don’t know how to crack that affluent market.

So what about you?

Do you like duking it out with all your competition?

Or would you prefer going after a market with almost no competition?

If you chose the one with no competition this will help:

Stephen Dusty Roberts