Competitive advantage is defined as “a condition or circumstance that puts a company in a favorable or superior business position.” Small business owners like yourself know just how difficult this is to achieve with so many skilled competitors in the market. However, it is possible to learn from companies with competitive advantage. This post will show you some lessons that you can learn from larger companies with competitive advantage to help give your small business an edge on the competition.
Know What Sets You Apart
In order to become a business with competitive advantage, you must first know what sets your business apart from the competition. What unique strengths does your small business possess? Focus on these strengths. Learn from them. Knowing what your business has to offer over the competition gives you confidence. That positive feeling will drive you to further creativity and success. Know the areas your business excels in, but do not rest on your laurels. Let your successes instill in you a desire for even more. If you know what sets you apart, you will be closer to achieving the ever elusive competitive advantage.
Improve Problematic Areas
While it is necessary to know your strengths, it is just as crucial to know your weaknesses. You will not be able to earn a competitive advantage in one area of business if other areas are struggling. What are some areas your small business can stand to improve in? I am sure a couple things may come to mind. Continuously find ways to improve. Ask your clients or conduct research online to find ways to improve operations where your business is lacking. Your small business may not ever have competitive advantage in every aspect of business. But, it is important not to give the advantage in these areas to your competitors. Improve all aspects of your business so that no competitor has an advantage over you.
Always Keep Learning
To have competitive edge, you need to be the best. In order to be the best, you need to be the brightest. No matter how much knowledge you think you have, especially in stronger areas of your business, there is always more to be learned. Learn as much as you can. Educate yourself about business, finance and the industry your business operates in. If you continue to learn, you will always be up to date on the newest innovations and practices. Implement the lessons you learn into your business practices. Surely, lifelong learning will improve your odds at obtaining a competitive advantage.
Focus On Yourself
You may think it is necessary to pay attention to what your competitors are doing. It is not the case. Time spent focusing on the practices of other businesses takes time away from improving your own. Stay focused on improving operations with your company. Your time is better spent researching areas where you need improvement. Focusing on the actions of competitors will stifle your creativity. You will not achieve competitive advantage if you are not constantly creating and improving. By focusing on your own small business, it will give you more time to increase your advantage over the competition.
Keep these pieces of advice in mind at all times. If you want your small business to become one of those companies with competitive advantage, you need to improve across the board. Know your strengths. Always continue learning more about your field. As a result, you will find new methods of improvement for areas your business struggles in. Pay no mind to the practices of your competitors. Stay focused on improving yourself and your business. Before you know it, your company might be identified as one of those companies with competitive advantage.
Image from http://escan.cuna.org/articles/story.php?doc_id=3840