Most businesses that I have worked with over the years have had no clue about the evil Darth Vaders and outside trends that are coming to destroy their business coach models and their means of supporting their families and fulfilling their dreams. Unless you want to get hit by the bus of an industry destroyer, you at least need to know what is going on and who those major disrupters are so that you can pivot your business coach model, if needed. When Jack Welch took over as the CEO of General Electric, they had not grown much at all in the past decade and the company had become stagnant. Overseas companies and the cheap labor they had access to were beginning to produce toasters and refrigerators that they would sell at low costs GE could not match. Rather than allowing the company to die a slow death from outside competition, Jack Welch completely switched the company’s focus. He abruptly pulled the company out of industries he felt that they could not be competitive in and moved them into industries and markets that he thought they could dominate. Before he retired from GE, the company had grown by 4000% and had become a leader in jet engine production, medical equipment, financing, and the world of television (Jack Welch and GE purchased NBC in 1986).
“Face reality as it is, not as it was or as you wish it to be.” -Jack Welch (Arguably the most successful CEO of his era as the CEO of GE who grew the company 4000% during his tenure)
To prevent yourself from being run over by an industry-destroying bus, take the time to answer the following questions:
Now that you have a good understanding of how you stack up versus the competition, it’s very important to formalize your observations into a visual tool that you can use to help you beat the living daylights of your competition. If you have yet to do so, fill out the SWOT Analysis On Steroids Worksheet at: http://www.thrive15.com/SWOTOnSteroids.
5.12 – Business Coach Advice: Find the Market’s Need and Fill It in a Memorable and Differentiated Way
My friend, you must figure out what market need you can fill in a memorable and differentiated way. Imagine that you own a sporting goods store and you are competing against Walmart, who is your next-door neighbor in the adjoining shopping center. How would you beat Walmart? First off, you can’t beat them on pricing for popular sporting goods items. Walmart is a notoriously aggressive negotiator who buys in such volume that you wouldn’t stand a chance. So you’re not going to beat them on price. However, you could beat them in the way the founder and late, great entrepreneur Sam Walton once suggested in his own book, Made in America. To beat Walmart, you would have to make sure that your sporting goods store focused on providing a wide variety of specialty sporting goods items not carried by Walmart, in addition to providing some of the same sporting goods items carried by Walmart. You would have to make sure that you provide Trader Joe’s-, Disney-, and Nordstrom-level customer service. If you do those things, you could actually compete with Walmart and beat them in this particular niche. For you to win in the game of business, you must find your niche.
If you are stuck attempting to find your niche, just know that you will find it at the business coach intersection of these four areas:
“With tech — and you see this with a lot of these new entrepreneurs — they’re 25, 30, 35 years old, and they’re working to the limit of their physical capability. And from the outside, these companies look like they’re huge successes. On the inside, when you’re running one of these things, it always feels like you’re on the verge of failure; it always feels like it’s so close to slipping away. And people are quitting and competitors are attacking and the press is writing all these nasty articles about you, and you’re kind of on the ragged edge all the time…The life of any startup can be divided into two parts — before product/market fit (BPMF) and after product/market fit. When you are BPMF, focus obsessively on getting to product/market fit. Do whatever is required to get to product/market fit. Including changing out people, rewriting your product, moving into a different market, telling customers no when you don’t want to, telling customers yes when you don’t want to, raising that fourth round of highly dilutive venture capital — whatever is required.” – Marc Andreessen (An American entrepreneur, investor and software engineer. He is the co-creator of Mosaic, the first widely used web browser and the co-founder of Netscape).
Business Coach Wisdom: Once you find the need in the market that you can fill better than anyone else in the world, you will become known for this. Think about the following brands.