A Business Four-Letter Word -- Commodity

OK - I've been thinking about something (mostly because it was brought up at work), it's about something being a "commodity" and that having your product or service become a commodity is a bad thing. Now, the company I work for (which we will refer to as Company X), sells services and they believe there are certain "commodity" services and some "high value" services.

Well I decided to go dictionary.com and get the definition:


com·mod·i·ty 'Audio ( P ) Pronunciation Key (k-md-t)
n. pl. com·mod·i·ties
  1. Something useful that can be turned to commercial or other advantage: “Left-handed, power-hitting third basemen are a rare commodity in the big leagues” (Steve Guiremand).
  2. An article of trade or commerce, especially an agricultural or mining product that can be processed and resold.
  3. Advantage; benefit.
  4. Obsolete. A quantity of goods.

Now - with that definition there is not clear cut view of commodity - you can choose any of the above. In case of Company X - their assumption is that certain services are "commodities" and that is bad. In reality, all their products and services are commodities - their value to any single customer should be driving revenue (and even better, profits).

Interesting, that even highly educated people don't know the meaning of words.



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