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Competitive strategy

The Brand New Ending

pic courtesy of freeimages.co.uk

If you, as entrepreneurs often do, are musing about how you can improve your business right now by doing something different and creative you might want to think about an interesting saying that I came across a while ago.

“No one can go back and make a brand new start. Anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending”. I have never managed to find the author (and if you know please tell me) but I salute the thinking.

If you wanted to apply this thought to your business you could imagine you were about to launch your business tomorrow or next week and re-experience the terror and excitement of a new venture.

 If you were truly able to put yourself in this mode you would walk on water to satisfy a potential customer requirement, you would speculate about what they were thinking endlessly and try to anticipate their needs. Continue reading

Time to stab the wounded?

CrosshairsAn old saying is that auditors arrive after the battle and enter the battlefield to finish off the wounded…

The events of 2008 and 2009 were a serious battlefield in many business sectors, with lots of failed and severely damaged businesses littering the landscape. A colleague expressed it in these words: “Those that survived the downturn often did so by using their reserves. They now are in business but in a vulnerable position with little or no reserves to fall back on. The ones who had no reserves when the downturn hit are not around anymore.” A harsh analysis perhaps but with much validity in many areas of business.

The euphoria of the successful Soccer World Cup and the air of optimism about the end of the recession is a good time to reflect where your business stands. Are you still skating on thin ice, where any major reversal right now will destroy you? Are you so overburdened by debt you find it difficult to trade? Or are you in a better shape than that, with limited but positive cash flows and some reserves?

If you fall into that latter category you may choose to start right now with a major and aggressive marketing campaign designed to take market share away from those competitors who are worse off than you. Continue reading