Collaboration is the process of two or more people or organisations working together. Competition is striving to gain or win something by defeating or establishing superiority over others. Which do you prefer?
We often find businesses competing with other businesses by using price as the competing factor, the assumption being that someone will choose our product or service if we price it lower than the competition. That is a very dangerous philosophy to have – it’s a one-way street to disaster and full of misery.
For me, competition is about competing with yourself, growing as a person and a business so that you’re always getting better and continuously improving. Then you become separate from what you might otherwise have considered to be the competition. Then you will never have to compete on price. People come to you because of your incredible service, the wonderful customer experience they enjoy through doing business with you, the fact that you deliver consistently and are reliable. Even during this Coronavirus Time, people are making choices based on, for example, how safe they feel in a shop, how reliable a business is delivering a product to their house, how respected they feel connecting with others online. Price is only about 10% of the reason why people will buy. The main reason people buy from you is because they like you and they trust you. (Usually people are too polite to say they don’t trust you so they may well tell you it’s all about the price!)
As well as continuously improving as a business to avoid having to compete with others, we can make more use of collaboration. All businesses need some input from other businesses if we are to survive, thrive and optimise our business wellbeing.
On a basic level, collaboration is what the business supply chain is all about. One business delivers parts to another business so that that business can manufacture its product or deliver its service to pass on to another business or directly to an individual consumer. If a part of the supply chain goes down – fails to deliver – everyone is impacted. We see that right now, glaringly, during this Coronavirus Time. For example, if businesses stop expanding and recruiting new people, a recruitment business cannot function (in its traditional model). If we can’t mix with other people, the hospitality sector suffers, and so on and so on.
But collaboration can be about more than just doing business with other businesses. It’s about proactively getting to know and trust each other, and understanding and identifying the potential synergies between you. It’s about working out how you can combine your individual strengths and business offerings to create something more that will help not only your businesses but the consumers of what you’re offering. It’s win win win! It’s a much kinder way of doing business.
You may already have systems in place for continually improving yourself and your business and you may already have all the collaborative relationships in place that you need. But if you don’t and you’re interested in the ideas, you might want to check out The Business Wellbeing Club. It combines both in one place.
Collaboration and ongoing learning and development are core values of The Business Wellbeing Club
The Business Wellbeing Club was formally launched in April and we’ve already been running events that will help with all aspects of business growth as well as taking care of your body and mind which we often overlook in our focus on the bottom line. Feedback from these events has been only positive and we are continuing to add more. And I love it that the members of The Business Wellbeing Club are actively collaborating with each other after just a couple of meetings. Welcome to a kinder way of doing business indeed!
Subscribe for regular updates direct to your inbox.