You think your value proposition is as strong as it needs to be because you are making sales, right? But you may be selling in spite of, not because of, your value proposition.

When you talk to a prospect on the phone or when you meet with a prospect, you have a few minutes of that person's attention.

When a prospect glances at a tradeshow sign, a piece of collateral, or a Web page, you get a fraction of that time and attention to make a powerful connection. Your value proposition has to be clear and succinct enough to succeed in those instances.

In B2B companies, there are always more tasks to complete than there are resources to do them, so many deliverables are judged "done" as soon as they are "good enough." But you should be willing to invest more effort in your value proposition, to make it clearer and more relevant.

Beware the Confirmation-Bias Trap

Confirmation bias is an unfortunate human tendency to give greater weight to evidence that supports our hypothesis than to evidence that refutes it.

We may pay more attention to people who quickly "get" what we mean by our value proposition than to those who ask us to elaborate or guess incorrectly at what it means.

How to Tell If You Have a Problem

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Kathryn Roy is managing partner of Precision Thinking (, a consulting firm helping B2B technology companies boost the effectiveness of their marketing and sales organizations. Reach her via or Twitter (@karoy1).