"There’s enough for everyone, getYOURslice"
When I became mature enough to understand this fully, I started to see how this also applies in the professional for-profit realm. While many business owners see similar businesses as a threat, or competition, I see them much differently. A startling number of my contemporaries see lack where I see abundance. Therefore, this "tag line" is a touch stone for my life. It's so much more than words.
My friend, Mia Voss, Travel Blogger & Founder of MiaOnTheGo, coined a phrase on a live broadcast, back in the Google Hangout days: "collaboration is the new competition". This point of view resonates with me.
To distill my approach, I view it this way…
Businesses similar to ours ~
- teach lessons when we are open to receive them,
- can be "Power Partners" you can bounce ideas off of,
- can refer others who may be a better fit, and
- by the same token, can be a resource you can refer to (when you have overflow or a prospect that wouldn’t fit with you).
These are a handful of benefits to being involved with "like" or complimentary businesses.
I am sure you can think of others. Please list your ideas in the comments below.
Here's a great example of someone else who shares my abundance mindset...
My friend, Carolyn Manzi, is an amazing artist and jewelry maker. She became well known in the Sonoma Valley and beyond, for making "prayer bracelets", and in fact wrote and hand-illustrated a couple books on making jewelry that helps "heal".
And she went much further. She taught many of us, including my mom, my sister, and many of our friends, how to actually make jewelry. She shared her resources for tools, beads, and findings. And she taught us special tricks and techniques at a time when she was making a living selling her OWN beautiful pieces at every weekend "road show". In fact, she even shared with us how to get our business licenses, and helped us choose names for our businesses ("name it/claim it"). I named my business LaLa Designs (because my nephew, Julien, couldn’t say Lynn when he started to talk, so my nickname, "LaLa" stuck).
- Was Carolyn training competitors who were going to take money out of her pocket? No, just the opposite.
Carolyn taught us that no one will make jewelry exactly like the next person. That our gifts are uniquely ours, and in demand for the right audience. There is only one unique you. She encouraged us: "style comes from within you". There's something for everyone. How does someone who could be viewed as a competitor share so much of her process?
She’s generous and she’s smart. What’s more? She’s learned to trust her instincts and she passes on wisdom that she’s picked up along the way. Her wisdom is born of challenges, as I find with most of the successful people I know. Carolyn teaches and models abundance, and this is a cornerstone of her success.
When I was with a Sunnyvale startup,
I loved collaborating with others in the office, and especially my marketing team. Nowadays, with my social media and business consulting firm, Carolyn’s lessons come into play daily as I collaborate with many talented people who enrich my experience, and bring depth to the services I offer my clients.
In terms of social media engagement, there are limitless possibilities for collaboration, and I get pleasure out of shining light on the talented people I share the social “channels” with. I read their books (and gift/promote them), I read their blog posts, and share those too. I am blessed with a network of smart professionals who are also strong, funny, and collaborative in spirit, which makes my profession rewarding beyond measure. When we openly share the magnificence of others in our world, we create "scenarios of synergy", releasing endless possibilities.
When we recognize the unique, often complementary differences in the business professionals surrounding us, we build stronger brands. We also build stronger niches; sustainable for the long haul, regardless of how business tools evolve. Click To Tweet
There is only ONE you. So, do YOU really well, on purpose!
Please share in the comments here. I’d love to see more real-life examples of encounters where you found that collaboration is, indeed, the new competition, especially if you had a shift in your mindset.