Courtesy of Mandarin Films (Original title "ye wen 2")
This is the second blog post I am writing about starting a new business. The inspiration to write this post came up during my relaxation session, after learning some additional in-depth XAML techniques watching the legendary movie “Ip Man2”. In case you have not seen the movie, you should watch it, before reading this post. That’s my personal advice.
Preparing yourself to enter the sceneBefore entering the scene learn your business well. Learn everything you can that you are passionate about and what makes you feel proud. Practice every day using your knowledge for something meaningful, that will take you to the next level. This is what a real master does. If you are serious about what you do, practicing will become an inherent part of your everyday life.
Hitting the ground – meeting your competitorsIgnorance will fill the space between you and your competitors as long as your ability to make money and attract customers is not becoming public, or your business-idea is starting to attract interest. This is the point of no return, or the last milestone in your project. Now, they know who you are. They feel that you are willing to claim a piece of the cake. And they will do anything to prevent you from sitting down at “their” table enjoying your meal.
Ready for the face-offNow that you have hit the ground, you have to show, that you are a real master in your area, and that you are willing to fight to grow your business and to become a local player. “Local” however needs to be re-defined here. The world is getting small. It’s a global business, but you can spread your message about what you do and what you offer within seconds around the globe!
Some of them will accept you as an equal partner right away after the first confrontation. But some of them will try to put your credibility down, or they will try to let your starve out, by blocking needed resources like freezing your credits or trying to sell your idea behind your back to third parties, you don’t even know about. This is what they think, but as a real master, you are prepared.
One key to be prepared for situations like that, is a in-depth knowledge of your own social-graph aka your sociogram.
Bring those voices, tweets and e-mails to life by visualizing them, turning them into real people. Analyze the connections they have. Knowing your social-graph, one essential key to your success. Why do you think big companies pay huge amounts of money to use all those big-data analytical tools? Build your own strategies on what you see and what happens in your own social environment. And please, don’t focus only on internet-services.
You can do that on your own, until your small business begins to grow and becomes mature.
You have been accepted – the biggest player of all is asking for a meetingThe leading force has asked you to share some of your precious time, or – like in “Ip Man 2” you asked for a final clarification. You had already the opportunity during the face-off to show what you got, and you went out of the face-off as an equivalent opponent.
As a master your are prepared for the finial fight, and you know how to do a clean fight, and you know when its best to stop the fight.
Turning your biggest opponents into partnersAlready the ancient “Art of War” tells you, that if you can’t beat your enemy, to turn them into allies.
Well, that’s for the case you see that a specific situation could not lead to the expected result. This is something your should know and be prepared for, before you meet your possible future partners.
Check the market and learn about your opponents. Check out what they are best at, and how they do it. Learn about their leaders, their products and strategies. Monitor them by using the shining new tools available on the market today. Many of them are free, like webiste-monitoring and much more.
But remember to do that in a really early stage, before hitting the market with your company and products.
This will automatically create respect between you and the other party, you are competing with. They will see, that you are very well informed about them, and that you are someone serious. An equal opponent, worth working against, or worth partnering with.