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In business, competition isn’t about being the best or #1

To devise a competitive strategy and achieve competitive success, you need to a right mindset about competition. 

Business leaders must get something right about competition. Wrong mindset results in flawed strategy.

Competition isn’t about being the best or number one, there’s simply no such thing as ‘the best‘. The key to competitive success for businesses and nonprofits alike lies in an organization’s ability to create UNIQUE VALUE.

Creating value, not beating rivals is at the heart of competition.

The analogy given by sports is misleading in business; athletes focus on outperforming their rivals; the athlete that becomes number one is crowned ‘the best’. And in athletics there can only be one winner.

Having that mentality in business will take you out of business very fast; that analogy means ‘I can win if only you lose’. And that locks up the creative juices-it means you play by the same rules as your rival in the same track.

Back to being ‘the best’;

There’s no such thing as ‘the best car’ , ‘the best mobile phone’- but we have UNIQUE mobile phones and cars. Do you buy BMW over Audi because it is the best? Of course not, but because there are some features making it UNIQUE and not the best.

Competing to be the best means there’s only ‘one best way’ to compete (and you only win if your rival losses).

Competitive strategy means choosing a path different from that of others.

It means competing by innovation and not imitation; Focusing on profits, and not market share; Earning higher returns, and not obsessing over being number 1; it means winning in your own way, and not being engaged in a head on competition with your rival where only one wins.

Final Pointers where to start in devising competitive strategy

  • Understand where your rivals are playing at, just to understand their thought patterns.
  • Be different. Don’t imitate
  • Create superior value for your clients, but ensure that you also get superior returns. This can be ensured by value-innovation-Differentiate whilst incurring low costs.
  • Understand the gap you exist to fill in the market and build on that.
  • Get out of your C-Suite and meet with customers to understand their needs.
  • Invest in R&D
  • Ensure that you have a business strategy. Do Not Run Your Business Organically.
  • Set goals and compete against your previous numbers.
  • Be so unique such that you ‘accidentally’ find yourself as the ‘Big5’ of your industry.
  • Do not forget to strengthen the chains bottom-up.

Whether you are a software development, events management, Accounting, Graphics, retail company or speaker, network marketer, consultant, etc. you can create your own competitive strategy-actually you have to.

You need to know what sets you apart; why should people come to you and not your rivals, what will keep you in business, What will give your company superior performance?

Whether you are a solo practice or not. And to do that you need to start with the right mindset about making it in business-about competitive success. And that means; focusing on creating VALUE(being unique) and not being the best(going head on with rivals)

About Kgadi Mmanakana

Professional Consultant, Speaker and Scholar on Entrepreneurship on Entrepreneurship and Strategy

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