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Why I Don’t Have Any Competitors (And Neither Do You!)

Cat LeBlancIn my business, I have no competition.

A bold statement? Yes it is.  There are certainly other business strategists, probably other coaches who specialise in idea generation and the business startup phase like I do.

But none of them is my competition.

Want to know why?

Why I don’t have any competitors (and neither do you!)

In nearly every sort of business, and especially as a consultant/coach of some form, often you are often selling soft skills as much as hard results.

I’ve found in my work that in addition to solid business strategy I am also providing:

  • Vision – Painting a picture and filling in the missing pieces of what it is my clients are trying to achieve.
  • Empathy – Understanding how my clients are feeling and where they’re coming from as they try to envision their first business.
  • Accountability – Acting as that little extra bit of push to get the important stuff done.
  • Decision-making – Encouraging people to actually make the big (and small!) decisions and move forward.
  • Confirmation – Being that voice – an authority figure – who confirms that they are on the right path.

None of this is quantifiable.  None of it can be put in a spreadsheet and tracked over the next year and assigned a numerical value or a dollar value.

And, more importantly, no one else can provide these services in exactly the same way I can.

The same is true of you and your business. Whether you’re a coach or a jewelry designer, a VA or a gardener, you bring a set of soft skills and experience to your business that no one else in the entire universe can claim!

And that is why you have absolutely zero competition: because some clients out there will resonate best with what you do, and others will resonate best with what someone else does. But there’s always enough to go around.

Stop waiting for “the big one.”

Unfortunately, our society has taught us all to have a certain scarcity mentality. Rather than seeing infinite possibilities in terms of the customers we can attract and the money we can earn, we instead see everything like a pie – and when someone else gets a slice, it leaves less for us.

Nothing could be further from the truth!

But because of this mentality, I see many people who would desperately love to start their own business, trying to come up with a BRAND NEW idea that’s never ever been tried before.

This is a bad idea for a couple of different reasons, mainly because when you’re blazing a completely new trail, you don’t know if there are any customers for it! But when you’re embellishing on an idea that already exists and has already proven itself, you know there are potential customers ready to buy.

So many people get stuck at this point in the game – trying to come up with a wholly new idea – that they never move forward, and that’s bad news for business.

Embrace your competition

Instead, I say embrace the fact that other people do what you do!

First, they’ve already proven that what you want to do makes money and is a valid business idea. Hooray!

Second, you can learn so much from watching and interacting with people who have gone before you. What worked for them? What didn’t? What do you like about their style? What would you do totally differently?

And finally, when you’re on good terms with your “competition,” they can be an excellent source for referrals. A coach or consultant who has a strong niche and understands her ideal customers will also be able to see when someone isn’t an ideal fit, and send them on to you, or someone else, who would be a better fit!

Often so much of what you do is based on who you are and the connection you have to your customer. Ultimately, it really doesn’t matter how many people are doing it, if there is a market for what you are doing there will be someone who connects with you and your brand.

I’d love to hear from you.

Are you afraid of your competition, or have you embraced them as colleagues?

What experiences have you had (positive or negative) dealing with competition or scarcity mindset?

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

4 Responses to Why I Don’t Have Any Competitors (And Neither Do You!)

  1. Hi Cat,

    Love these thoughts, particularly regarding soft skills. As I was reading this portion of your article I realized that this
    was what I was missing in job interviews. Although I always have the hard skills needed I struggle with how to differentiate myself from other contenders for a job. Thanks,

    Dan

    • Thanks for commenting Dan. Great self reflection. Of course having the ‘hard’ skills to get the job done is really important but the other skills can really give you an edge. In my business for example it’s really important that my sub contractors are great communicators and willing to be flexible. In many ways that makes my life so much easier that I would be prepared to compromise on the hard skills if I knew the person was willing to learn and a hard worker.

  2. Hi Cat. I loved reading this article. When I started thinking about changing my direction and what I wanted to do – one of the big things that came up was helping people find the business that is right for them. I then came across your site and was like ‘Oh man, this chick is doing exactly what I’m setting out to do and she’s far more along the way than me’.

    Months down the track (after my decision to not look at anything you were doing in order to avoid comparitis), my site is up and I’m moving towards my goals. But you know what? Because I didn’t worry about what you were doing, I now look at us side by side and we are totally different. Yes, we are wanting to help people with very similar stuff – but because I was true to me – my brand and my message are just that…me.

    Now that I’m at this point, I feel totally comfortable with where I am. And I love that you are up for embracing competition, because I’m a huge believer in that myself. I actually prefer the term co-opertition. =) Would love to connect in person some time if you’d be up for it. Think we’re both in Melbourne. =) Kate.

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