I used to think that I had two types of competitors for my business:
- People doing the same type of work I do
- Alternative ways for people to solve the problem I solve
I’ve always known that there is plenty of room for more people to do what I do. We’re in a growing industry, and I can build the business of my dreams with a tiny fraction of the market.
But I do tend to feel angsty about the substitutes – the other ways people try to solve their problems when they reach capacity in their business. A lot of those solutions don’t work very well, and I believe that what we do is better.
But when I took Seth Godin’s Marketing Seminar, I learned how wrong I was.
It turns out that my biggest competitor isn’t another systems strategist, or some software tool that promises to solve everything.
My biggest competitor is apathy.
It’s “I’ll do it later.”
It’s not taking action.
When people choose a competitor, that’s actually a good thing! As long as they have a great experience with that company, our whole industry gets a little stronger. More people take action. More people become aware that this kind of solution exists.
But when things aren’t moving forward? When people keep living with this problem because they don’t believe a solution exists? That’s when things get rough.
We can all win when we can work together to go to war against apathy.
I’m curious – have you seen this same force at play in the work you do? What do you think it would look like to raise the tide together?