navigating the Competition: Understanding Shifts In The Market & Economy
Worksheets & Downloads
total Video & Workbook time
Experienced, very successful business owners don’t leverage their personal experience because they know full well that what worked 5 years ago – and in some cases last year – does not work now.
Their business “savviness” is rooted in their (learned) ability to constantly “read the tea leaves” about their competitors, the market and what’s happening in the economy, as it could impact their businesses.
They can do this quickly and plan accordingly. The process is similar to what a doctor does whether you go in for a checkup or about an ailment. They quickly run down a mental list checking for symptoms. Then they make a diagnosis.
The same principle applies to business management. Learn the list, make your assessment, and make your decision, then take action.
Completing this module will help you:
Tips & notes
When you understand that both your business, your competitors, customers and the market are essentially “living” things, success becomes a function of understanding and observing the never ending dance, between all these elements.
Ever wonder why some people seem to be so successful… and whatever they do seems to be successful? It’s not magic. It’s because they know how things work – and what to look for. Then they make quick and effective decisions.
We all know of people who own several, sometimes dozens, even hundreds of businesses, who hardly seem to be working. While most typical small business owners are overworked and spend endless hours “navel gazing”, researching and trying to make an “informed” decision.
Successful business decision making is rooted in “Decision Making Velocity”. DMV. The longer you take to make a decision, the less likely it is that it’ll be a successful one.
In this module, you’ll learn how to make decisions – quickly. Thereby paving your way to great success.
Video 32 Min + 12 Min read to complete worksheet, who
By the time most people feel what’s happening, it’s often too late to change course – too little time and ineffectively. You don’t need a looking glass to see into the future, because any impending changes, always have “tells”.
A common example is rising interest rates. Everybody knows what that means… a cooling real estate market, people not wanting to take on more debt etc.. But considering only interest rates when reading the tea leaves, amounts to only reading one leaf. There are many other leaves to read.
Learn to read the “top 10 leaves” and you’ll always have your pulse on what’s coming down the pike.
Video 44 Min + 18 Min read to complete worksheet
The “go-to” solution for most panicked business owners, in a price war, is to start offering deals and specials any which way they can – just to keep the trucks on the road, pay the bills and hope to ride it out – until the low-ballers run out of money.
What if YOU run out of money first? You likely have a higher overhead than the new low cost service providers that just popped up. Price wars are inevitable and often cyclical. Sometimes they’re caused by economic or local conditions, or by technology – like a new DIY “tool”. This may result in a temporary drop in purchased services, while homeowners realize that DIY just doesn’t cut it.
Low-ball pricing is NOT differentiating yourself. You’re slowly driving yourself out of business. If you read the leaves correctly, you know what’s coming.
When you understand how your business is structured, (previous module) you’ll be able to take pre-emptive action and truly differentiate yourself – and attract the right customers.
Video 36 Min + 20 Min read to complete worksheet
Everyone seems focused on what the competition is doing. Why do that? They typically run in packs, all looking at each other, and trying to do the same thing as if they knew that the other guy (or all the other guys), had it figured out. Often like lemmings running off a cliff, since they’re not thinking… they’re just looking at the next guy, and following along.
The general rule is that if everybody is doing the same thing – and you join in, you’ll join a losing horde. Like in a price war, since in that situation, you’re actually paying a part of your customers bill, out of your pocket – subsidizing your own services to them – because you probably can’t afford to be there to do the service in the first place, at that price.
You have to look at your competition – but with a very careful eye. Know what to look for and when to feel gratitude for their stupidity and for your opportunity.
Video 41 Min + 18 Min read to complete workshee
The market is always changing. Not always in obvious ways, but nothing stays the same. Which means you can’t expect to run your business exactly the same way year after year.
If you’re not proactive in how you run your business – you become, like most people, reactive. You only change things up when you have to. Which is never profitable, since everyone else is adapting at the same time, the same way. Everybody moves in a pack.
The thing about moving with the “competitive pack” is that nobody has a “competitive advantage”.
When you know the signs of change, you begin to lead the pack, and by the time they catch up, it’s too late – and you’ve moved along again.
Video 48 Min + 20 Min read to complete worksheet
Every established business has a specific crew and equipment mix, and they’re all slightly different. Also, each business has a typical customer base they try to serve and market their various services to.
When the low-ballers pop-up with cheap equipment and target the market’s bread ‘n butter business, everyone starts to throw their existing crew and equipment at the market to compete, even though they can’t afford to.
As they say, the “tail can’t wag the dog”, and you cannot compete head on in a price war with expensive equipment and crew.
This is where you need to assess the market in general, your equipment/crew mix (covered in later modules), and really identify YOUR market. The one option you don’t have – is competing against folks working out of a garage and a pickup truck, while deploying your expensive setup.
You do have a lot of options, and when you know what they are, you’ll actually capture a greater market share of the business, that the low-ballers cannot touch.
Video 41 Min + 19 Min read to complete worksheet