No other competition is productive than when one competes with him/herself and no other competition can make a person a market leader save from within. As usual some are now saying Patrick is becoming insane because this is against the market practices and theories in the book.
Please tarry with a little longer and see whether your conclusion stands! Well let me say I want to challenge the book and the tradition. Sometimes traditions are passed from generation to generations because nobody dared to challenge them, let me have that gut to do so.
One thing that I would like to remind any businessperson and or any individual, who has something born out of a vision, is that a vision is authentic and original.
This means that it is unique therefore the best you can do is to produce the maximum that you can by looking into yourself.
There are so many things yet to be discovered in this world but it has not been the case because people and organisations have focused on each other rather than themselves and this is counter productive and diminishes the creativity capacity.
Every person or organization, or even nation which has managed to compete with itself has become the best in its sphere of influence and everyone else becomes number two.
This is a kingdom principal which needs a kingdom mentality to be understood. In other words the greatest way to fail is to compete with others, because by sheer luck you managed to lead and because your goals were determined by others you were in competition with, and to lead it means you have met these standards. The question is: What’s next?
Have you not seen companies which are gone on top’ struggling. The reason is that the benchmark of their being on top is by trying to beat others.
So in that case once you reach your limit, the next thing is to fall. In this case, to you the sky is not the limit, but the competition is the limit.
Competing with others in most if not all cases makes one lose focus, and lead to diversion from ones vision. Have you ever wondered why there is so much corruption in our beloved Africa? Most of it has been brought about by this kind of external competition. Because every time you make a compromise it means you are diverting your goals, and you will do this at the cost of integrity.
The moment you stop looking at others and begin to look into yourself as an individual or organisation, that’s when the best in you will be discovered.
You will become a master of something and defeat the common adage which goes “Jack of all trades and a master of none’ Do you want to be a Jack? Stop competing with everyone and look into yourself. The secret of mastery is that everyone would like to be like you, the greatest motivation in this life is to be appreciated and this gives you the drive to discover more within you, hence becoming productive in you area of calling.
People have lived miserable lives; organisations which were once flourishing have become mere shadows of their former selves simply because they stopped focusing on themselves and looked elsewhere.
Many organisations as we speak now have neglected their employees who are the backbone of their being and are busy focusing on the competition.
This does not work, remember that greatness is an inner event with outer consequences. Once you awaken your inner leader, worldly success is a guaranteed result.
One may ask, so what shall organizations do? Then I will say concentrate on competing to improve the welfare of the employee and see how productive they become.
Overtime and working hours will not be an issue. Once this happens your people will then feel guilty for not performing.
In every human being there is something called conscience. This is the human element that will feel bad when doing wrong, and normally calm when thing are right.
Once you provide a good platform for your people then you have made this element become sensitive. When this happens, productivity is not a problem, innovation becomes the order of the day and in no time you are a market leader without bothering to look outside on who is threatening what.
On an individual basis, let me say that every seed has the potential to become a forest. This means that as small a seed may look, it is packed with ability waiting to be discovered.
Foolish is a seed that concentrates on what other forests look like rather than developing the forest in itself.
So instead of focusing on people outside rather focus on the man inside and the people outside will focus on you.
The great news is that it’s just not possible to grow your interior world and not see corresponding growth in your exterior world.
The competition that we are seeing in the business world, individuals and nations has been prompted by insecurity.
Why do you think Cyprus has the strongest currency in the world this is because they have learnt to believe in themselves?
This insecurity is brought about by two twin complexes called ‘Inferiority’ and ‘Superiority’. These are fueled by identity crisis.
Inferiority complex comes as a result of focusing too much on other people or organisations and then blowing the external environment out of proportion, hence they end up looking down upon themselves. Remember whatever one focuses on so much the same you magnify. So when you look at external competition it appears bigger and will intimidate you. Many who would have been powerful businesspeople, great men and women never became what they were supposed to be because they looked outside and hence Inferiority Complex killed them.
Focus on yourself, develop your area of gifting, empower yourself with knowledge surrounding yourself and find a mentor, all this under the blanket of self development to become your own master. Do not mistake this with looking at yourself with pride; looking at the very you with the sole mandate of personal development is good, but pride is a form of insecurity brought about by fear ignited by looking at the external environment. This, contrary to the former, is called then referred to as ‘Superiority complex’.
So at this juncture some might say we are against competition or what we are saying is based on the economics assumption of a perfect market, or a market where other things are held constant?
Our answer will be a big No, what I am just doing is to challenge the traditions and bringing a better approach to success. My argument is that the best competition is when you compete with yourself. In other words I am saying become ‘Competition’ and others will follow.
When you become ‘Competition’ you will become the market leader, in other words you become the race that all are running in, you become the prize that is set before everyone, that whoever is in the race will want to obtain.
Take for example Coca Cola: no other soft drink bottler will become like this giant. In my country when one wants to buy a soft drink he will just say I want Coke even though they meant a different brand so the seller will then have a duty to ask which one!
We read today that China is and will become the super power in 2027. Have you ever seen why? The reason is simply because the Chinese people do not spend much time competing with other nations. They develop their people. Go to China today and see what children as young as seven are doing. They are not wasting time on trying to be what they are not, but spending time on how to improve and maximise who/what they are.
I will not conclude this without coming back home to our dear Africa. The reason why we are not even the second world, is because we have not looked at ourselves and discovered what we have, but we look at others and use them as our yard sticks!
I hope striving to become competition is not confusing. The battle is not won on the battlefield neither the race on the track, but only when you are alone as you discover your personal strength.
The greatest athlete is not the one who comes out first but the one who sets a record for others to follow.
People have been running but there is only one world record. This was not brought about by how many people one leaves behind in the track but it is based on how fast you were.
When you concentrate in establishing the best in you only then will you discover the greatness thereof only then the light in you will begin to shine.
When you bring the light into a world where there is darkness then people begin to follow you for you provide direction, you are the pace setter determining when and where to put the next step. This is how a market leader emerges and everyone will set standards in line with what you are doing and you become the reference point. Hence in this case you are the Competition.
Let me say in conclusion that the worst enemy of a man is himself. A wicked man runs away even when no one pursues him, but a good man stands in boldly.
Therefore compete with others and perish, compete with yourself and become the market leader.
‘You can only wake up a sleeping man but you cannot do so with the one who is pretending to be asleep’.
Patrick Marimo is a Zimbabwean motivational speaker working in Tanzania and can be reached on [email protected]