Be the Edge
Be the Edge
The best ideas and the most sensible ideas are the ones that are not contrived. This is why people always say, “Why didn’t I think of that?”
In order to achieve a winning edge—the element that separates you from the rest of the pack and ensures your success in business—you will have to find ways to identify good ideas and develop them quickly and effectively.
Once you’ve selected or invented a business idea, you should review it from many different angles. With this insight, you can create numerous small business tests in search of the most profitable. We suggest trying higher risk ideas with potentially high rewards along with those that are generally lower-risk, tried and true moneymakers.
This process will help identify future profit centers that are worth pursuing. If you are simultaneously trying out many angles and reinforcing ones that work best in an upward spiral, then you will be creating downside protection.
If your competitor is more adept than you are, she might be able to wipe out one of your profit centers. However, if you have spent many years growing and reinforcing several profit centers, then losing in one area will not make your competitor superior nor will it ultimately harm your business.
Intuitively, you should know that competitors in a free market, capitalist economy are going to try to “take you out.” You must improve and prepare every day for the inevitable commercial “war.”
So long as you’ve been working harder and smarter and aligning yourself with good partners, employees and suppliers, you can survive at the expense of, or in cooperation with, all those who compete.
Competitors and insider stakeholders who doubt you and your abilities are predictable obstacles that every businessperson has to navigate. Other jealous, doubtful, or unmotivated people who are close to you personally or on the competitor’s side will constantly try to get in your way, break you down, or challenge you. Regardless, your job is to produce in your marketplace while all your challengers remain personally distracted by you and your success.
You will find an uncomfortably large portion of the workforce and society overall has a sense of entitlement, wants something for nothing, has no sense of urgency, works only on their own agendas, has inflated self-worth, is not appropriately competitive, and lacks truthful analysis and reflection of their past actions and business plans. These sorts of people are most likely to disturb your trail to the top.
In addition, since a lot of trouble tends to come from the inside, in today’s business climate, it may be wiser to hire people as subcontractors for some time before considering them as employees.
Like athletes in the Olympics, the people who train the hardest on one goal and prove to be the most adept will win, or at least get to share the top prizes. Others who can’t manage to get past the competition will be run off and knocked down. By maintaining your focus, distractions and detractors will harm your competitors business more than your own.
Paradoxically, everything that is difficult in business is ultimately for the good, because it is yet another obstacle for your competitors that you intend to overcome more effectively. In the quest to grow your businesses, you will constantly discover new, difficult, and unpredictable challenges. Whether you find those challenges to be blessings or curses is just a matter of perspective. Without obstacles, there would be no barriers to entry for competitors, and your market could become saturated and unprofitable quickly. Obstacles allow you to practice and learn from each task in context, and help you learn how to hurdle obstacles in general, which is leverage that you can use for the future.
The more obstacles there are in your industry, the more areas there are for you to master better and faster than the competition. This will place you even further in front of the pack. Were there fewer industry obstacles, competitors would have a better chance at stealing market share at your expense. Therefore, the challenges, barriers, and difficulties in business are beneficial to confident, proactive entrepreneurs like you.