Lessons from London: #2 Embrace The Competition

Lesson #2 from London comes from the conference I spoke at on January 6th.  I was talking to the conference coordinator about the speakers and she shared a story of one person she personally contacted to encourage a topic submission. This individual wouldn’t submit a topic from what appeared to be a lack of confidence. Many of the attendees would be experts in the field and this person did not welcome the vulnerability of sharing work. At the end of the story, the coordinator told me she welcomes “competition” with an attitude of “let’s see what you’ve got!”

The bottom line—rather than shy away from competition or ignore what others are doing, embrace the competition and “see what they’ve got!” This made me think about business- particularly the leadership consulting and motivational speaker fields. How often do consultants attend events by other experts to “check them out?” Why should they avoid each other’s events rather than attending with an open mind to learn something new? No one has the same training, experience or techniques. There really aren’t any new ideas! Rather than a feeling of competition, we should be more inclusive and collaborative! Maybe this doesn’t happen in other industries, but I would bet car manufacturers, for instance, are buying up the competition to study, learn and innovate their own products!

Other than incorporating great stuff from others into your own presentations and services (no copyright infringement, just flattery!) Here are other reasons to embrace your competition:

No one is the best fit for every company. The more you know and understand your competition, the better you can be at referring a better company or consultant. AND you will amp up your trust and likability by being honest, which will increase the likelihood you will be the one hired the next go round.

The more you know and can speak with authority on other similar systems, products or businesses to yours, the more you appear as a leader in your industry. By not being afraid of the competition, but knowing them, you immediately up your level. You also rise by association. Sometimes being seen with the “big dogs” can make you one yourself!

Future collaborations
Why not check out the competition to know who you would like to ask to join you at an event or to join forces for a training or virtual summit? Collaborations are one of the best ways to introduce yourself and your brilliance to other potential clients. Both of you gain a boost in e-mail lists. Your credibility is instantly strengthened to each other’s tribe because you are working together.

So get out there and embrace the competition! You are always going to be you! Don’t hide your brilliance from others who do similar things. Remember the adage “A rising tide lifts all boats” and make your industry rise!

Or, since we are receiving inspiration from London, “We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided.” J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

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