If you’re crap at diving, start a bellyflop contest…
This post is all about playing to your strengths. Look at the man in this photo. He’s overweight, bald and looks like he’s been shrink-wrapped into his swimwear. Traditional thinking might proffer that this man is not destined for a place on the podium in the world of sports. But closer examination reveals a staggering air of confidence. He’s taken flight with the certainty and grace seen only in seasoned winners and luminaries at the top of their fields. That’s because this man is on his way to winning the 2011 North West Bellyflop Contest, for the fourth year running.
Believe it or not there’s a lesson here for all of us, as well as the businesses owners and entrepreneurs in every walk of life. It is this – we’re far more likely to succeed if we play to our strengths. Like our bellyflopper, we have to identify the things that we’re good at (like having a big belly) and the things that make us different (like not minding a bruised tummy), and then find the audience which wants these strengths or skills. Simple.
As business owners this involves a bit of lateral thinking. It might be that you do something quite mundane like selling boilers (sorry boiler-sellers). To try to take first place based on price or product range might be impossible, but what makes you different might be how you sell boilers. If you choose, you can set yourself apart for little to no cost, and maybe even beat your competitors fair and square. If you go into every sale with a set of values or ethics which set you apart from your competition then this is what makes you different, and this is what you should be telling your audience.
We live in times where consumers can get any product or service from a number of businesses. It’s hard for business owners to win the price war and even harder to offer a unique product. So is it worth analysing how we do business?
There are some great businesses out there who are making this an integral consideration to their business model. In terms of importance, these forward thinking businesses are rating process as highly as product. This approach is rapidly becoming a key consideration in consumer spending, so to put your values and ethics at the forefront of your business’ mission statement might really set you ahead of the crowd.
If you want to take this approach seriously, why not consider affiliating with an organisation that revolves around ‘Businesses with Values’? Cuckoo Vine aims to start a new era of trading, where businesses with integrity and ethics succeed over businesses without. So play to your strengths, and if those strengths are your values, then stand proud and show the world.
Cuckoo Vine – Businesses with Values
Cuckoo Vine aims to be the collective for UK businesses with integrity and values. It’s a platform to stand proud of our values and celebrate the good guys out there. If you have something to say about a great company, or you think your business belongs in the mix, get on Cuckoo Vine. It’s free!