The Dangers of Benchmarking

Industry benchmarking is worthless activity unless the others in your industry are the best. If you compete with mediocre companies you will only achieve mediocrity.

If you want to be the best then look to the companies that are the best. Want to be great at customer service? Look to Ritz-Carlton or Nordstrom. Want to be great at efficiency? Compare your performance to McDonalds. Want to be great at innovation? Compare yourself to 3M. Want to be great at marketing? Measure yourself against Nike or GE. 

It doesn't matter if you are a B2B tractor supply store or a luxury hotel. Your customers are comparing the experiences you provide with the best and worst experience they have had. They don't care about the industry. They care about the experience.