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Damien's Blog

Focus on Your Business, Not Your Competition

By Damien Patton, (487 words) Posted in Corporate on August 31, 2009
There are (29) comments permalink

I am always surprised when consulting with other companies about how much energy they put into their competition. Even though most of them won't admit that they are allowing their competition to dictate how they run their company, it is readily apparent to a company outsider like myself.

In the last 3 weeks I have had the opportunity to consult with companies in three different industries. Each of these companies had brought me in to advise them on where improvements could be made to their business to not only do well in this tough economy, but to just ride out the storm and survive.

When working with a new client, one of the most important things that I do is listen. You might be surprised if you just sit back and let the client speak about their operation. Something that is so obvious to you may not be obvious to someone that is working in the fight every day. One item that all 3 of these clients had in common, is that they were all focused to an unhealthy degree on their competition. My advice, start focusing and running your own game plan and let the competition worry about themselves, and better yet, but running your game plan they will start to focus on you and not the game plan they should be running.

This is not to say that you shouldn't watch your competition, because you should. There is a big difference between watching for market signs of change via your competitors and spending untold man hours following and trying to emulate or discredit their every move. Sure some of the things they do make you angry because you see it as a stretch of the truth, unfair marketing, or perhaps they just beat you to the market on something. One thing is for sure, if you are focusing on them, and they are running their game plan, you are helping them achieve their goals while defeating yours. Do you want to help your competition? Of course not.

Companies need to agree amongst the leadership what direction they want to head and what tools are needed to point the company in that direction. From there they can draft a game plan and strategically put elements into place to achieve these goals. As the game plan is being run, make frequent observations and evaluations to make sure you are on track and make small adjustments as needed to stay on course. Try not to let the competition's new shinny widget or marketing campaign derail your efforts to achieve your goal. If the competition's moves warrant a response, make sure it is well thought out, fits into your overall game plan, and just isn't a knee jerk reaction or retaliation. Although striking back at your competition may make you feel better, you have just wasted valuable time in moving your objectives and company forward.

Just think of it this way, if your competitors are trying to emulate you in their movements, or are following every move you make; there couldn’t be a bigger complement.

Icon: author blog About the Author:
Damien is the Founder and CEO of FindAnyFloor.com as well as several other technolgy businesses specializing in social media and search.
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Comments (29)

Rick Weir posted on: September 2, 2009

Good point. Were you mainly talking about the flooring industry? I think this applies to everyone. I see it all to often in our industry and I swear no one ever learns. I love it and it is easy for us to have wins when the competition is focused on what we are doing.

Danielle N posted on: September 7, 2009

Rick, I think Damien was talking about other industries as he said 3 different industries. It doesn't matter what industry you are in, if the competition is focused on what you are doing, it means you are doing something right and it means they have their eye off the ball! Hard to score points when you are concentrating on the scoreboard and not the basket...

Great post!

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Ashlyn Johnson posted on: July 1, 2015

It is a good advice that focus on your business don't be race with other's business to be on top sometimes who can do my assignment for me the competition will give you a big loss which is sometimes not bearable to get back in that past situation so you have to be focus on your business which going good from others and they will be give you a huge profit.

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