Chuck Blakeman

Author, speaker, and founder of the Crankset Group.



Your Competition, Isn’t.

Scarcity thinking will keep you poor.

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This article was published on December 05, 2010. So far, 8 people have left their thoughts. Share your own thoughts.

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I’ve sold millions in big contracts and small and never once thought about “competition.” It’s NEVER a factor. I don’t think I have any. I don’t believe you do, either. If you think you do, you’re probably not thinking straight.

Big business loves to teach us to do “SWOT” analyses" where the “T” is for “Threats”, those evil competitors who are going to swoop in and steal our clients any day. The only threats you should ever be worried about come from within your own company and your own head.

The problem is bad thinking and bad strategies on your part. Here’s some examples:

You either live in a world of abundance or a world of scarcity, and whichever one you choose affects everything you do.

This isn’t woo-woo crap. This is hard-core success thinking. If you live in a zero sum world then there’s only so much to go around, and you better get yours before the next guy gets his. If you live in a world of abundance you figure out how to help other people be successful so that you can be, too. I do a weekly lunch with 50-60 business owners and regularly have “competition” there who “steal” potential clients. I’m glad they find clients there. I do, too. Everyone says it’s the best weekly lunch environment they’ve ever been around, because it’s based on living in a world of abundance.

People who focus on trying to figure out what makes their competition successful don’t have enough good ideas of their own.

We don’t have time to figure out what others are doing – we’re too busy trying to breathe life into our own ideas. Focus on getting better, not on your competition.

Focus on your client’s needs, not your competition’s products.

I expend a lot of energy figuring out what my clients need (which isn’t necessarily what they always want right away). If you do that, you won’t have time to focus on what other providers are doing.

You’re a terrible guesser, anyway.

I’ve seen companies dissect the products, services or marketing of other companies, then mimic it, only to find out they were mimicking the worst part of what the others were doing. The mimic thought it was what made them successful, and so did they. They’re thanking the mimic for helping them see it clearly while the mimic goes out of business.

The two last words of a dying company are “Me, Too.”

The best way to ensure you are irrelevant is to mimic other people’s successes rather than creating your own. That strategy is fundamental to a world of scarcity, but worse yet it shows a complete lack of originality, passion, cause, mission, or joy in what you do. And it means you’re only in it for the money. And people who try to make money make a lot less than people who birth something the world can use.

If someone “beats” you, they simply have something the customer needs that you don’t.

Rejoice for the customer. If you also have things other customers will want, you’ll attract those relationships and the other guy won’t. When you try to be all things to all men you become nothing to anyone (a wandering generality vs. a meaningful specific – Ziz Ziegler).

If you have something meaningful to offer, you will get customers. If you don’t you won’t. Blaming “competitors” for “losing” contracts is nonsense. Just get better in a few things and go deeper, not wider. If you’re not losing a lot of opportunities, you’re too wide and likely are delivering on the edge of mediocrity. Not a great long term strategy.

The bottom line

Get the idea of competition out of your head and focus on being the best at whatever great idea you’ve birthed. And while you’re at it, try to figure out how to make the other guy successful, too. You’ll make a lot more money and have a lot more fun.



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Steve

12/05/10

I always enjoy reading something that makes me FEEL like what I have just read was what I was just thinking, only I didn’t think it as eloquently. I feel strongly about the power of thought; conscious or otherwise … When I have moments of doubt it triggers this quote from James Lane Allen:

As you think you travel, just as you love, you attract. You are today where your thoughts have brought you; you will be tomorrow where your thoughts take you. Into your hands will be placed the results of your thoughts be they base or beautiful.

You cannot escape the results of your thoughts. Whatever your present condition may be, you will rise, remain or fall with your thoughts, your vision, your ideal. You will become as small as your controlling desire; or as great as your dominant aspiration.

Thanks for sharing Chuck!


Douglas Griess

12/05/10

Well said Chuck. I remember when my mindset shifted. It was on the downtown mall shuttle talking with my good friend James Crane. I was making the scarcity argument and James simply said to me, “You’re assuming a zero sum game.” My thinking has been different ever since.


Chuck

12/06/10

Steve,

Thanks for the great feedback – we should all have a “dominant aspiration”!

Doug,

I call those Trapeze Moments – where we decide to let go of the old and bring in the new. I remember key ones in my life as well and am always curious when the next one will jump up. When we let go – we change!

This goes to a heart conviction of mine that we don’t think our way to a new way of acting, but we ACT our way to a new way of thinking.

Trapeze moments are great times in our lives – if we let go. :)


Marshall Lee

12/06/10

I’ve always believed in the abundance mentality. Covey taught me this. Good to see it again. Future plans will be to read this frequently and share it with anyone who thinks there is just so much pie…

Thanks,
Marshall


Jen Orvis

12/06/10

Funny how it is so simple to understand but is truly a mindset shift that takes practice. It seems we get tested frequently and I can speak for myself by saying that, deciding to live in a world of abundance was the most freeing thing I have done for myself in business.


Chuck

12/09/10

Marshall/Jen,

Great to see other thinking the same way – thanks.


CoCreatr

12/30/10

Well put, Chuck. Picked this one up along the way.
Reader, please sit down now. For some this may
trigger a belief system crash.

Your biggest ever competitor
is your customer’s last experience
with you.


John N

12/30/10

Again you have said it well Chuck, the only real competition we have is ourselves. Can we get out of our own way, embrace our gifts, move forward and stay “out of our heads”.
Toughest thing we have to do is stay out of our own way…
Thanks for your continued insight


Chuck

01/16/11

CoCreatr,

Just saw this – my apologies for late response. What a GREAT statement – must be repeated:

“Your biggest ever competitor is your customer’s last experience with you.”

That sums it all up – thanks.


KC Truby

03/30/11

In over 4,000 one to one sales presentations and maybe well over 100,000 in my seminars I can only recall a dozen times in my life where I lost a deal to a competitor. It is the most over thought over worried concept in business.
KC Truby
www.qbexpress.com


Chuck

04/02/11

KC,

Couldn’t agree more. That “worry” comes from living in a world of scarcity – gotta get mine first because they’re only so much…

What if we created more?




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