Many people use industry standards to see how their particular business is doing. They compare their numbers to industry standards and from there can determine if they are doing well or poorly.
The problem with this is what if the industry is wrong?
What if these standards have been holding the industry back for years?
To use an athletic event as an example we can go back to Roger Bannister and the 4 minute mile. It was thought to be impossible to run a mile in less than 4 minutes. Because of this belief, no one was able to break 4 minutes. For whatever reason, Roger Bannister felt he could do so and with this belief he became the first person to run a mile in under 4 minutes. Once he accomplished this, others were able to do as well. In his case, the industry (or sport) held back the participants because of the belief.
Are you sure you are comparing your numbers to the right standards? Might it make sense to have someone from outside your industry take a look with a different perspective? The advantage in doing this is the person from outside your industry doesn’t have the preconceived ideas based on industry standards.
Knowing industry standards is important but then, determining whether the standards are what you should be comparing to is even more important.
Just something to think about.
Have a great day!