Competitive Edge?

26 06 2010

If you are in sales, you spend a lot of time asking clients and prospects what their competitive advantage is.  Have you ever taken a step back and posed that same question to yourself?  I recently read a statistic that said 58% of all high school graduates who don’t go on to college never read a book again!  Even those that do go on to get a college education, once they settle into their cozy and comfortable lives, what are they doing to gain a competitive edge – to get that raise, promotion or next higher paying position elsewhere?

When was the last time you attended a class or a seminar to improve yourself?  I’m not talking about the ones you have to attend, but the ones you want to attend.  I’m speaking first hand that taking small steps and reading books, articles, listening to tapes, attending classes, and then applying those things you’ve learned REALLY works.  Think about your current work setting.  Is there really anyone in your organization that is going to spend the time you need them to spend on personally developing you?  There’s NO time people.  Let’s face it, everyone is being asked to do more with fewer resources.  We can’t expect or rely on our superiors and colleagues to teach us things.  The opportunity lies within us.  We need to accept responsibility for our own destiny. 

If you know me, you will periodically hear me get on my soapbox about starting to read self-help and motivational books when I was 22 years old.  I am living proof that the small amount of time I poured into improving myself overtime has done nothing but compound over the years.  I have the competitive edge and no one can take that away from me.  I plan my work and work my plan and I allocate time everyday to read or learn something.  Even if it is only 5 minutes a day.  NO EXCEPTIONS.

The real winners in the future will be the ones that stand out from their competition.  Its one thing to read, study, attend seminars and listen…you MUST get up and apply it.  All the book smarts in the world isn’t going to do you any good if you don’t (as Nike would say) DO IT! 

In a way, I hope people don’t wake up and smell the coffee burning.  It just makes it that much easier for me and others hell bent on living a life based on living their passion.  On the other hand, I wish more people would take a few baby steps and see how quickly those small steps compound over time.  Think about how much better the companies we work for would be.

I realize we aren’t all wired the same and that you can’t force people to be something they are not.  Some of us just show up at work, do the bare minimum, collect our paycheck and enjoy life doing other things.  That is totally fine….I want to make it very clear that I’m not speaking to those people.  My message is for those straddling the fence, wanting to make a change, and unsure of how to do it.  Just make the consistent effort.  I promise it will pay off for you regardless of the profession you are in.

We can’t change the past but we can change the future.  Would you rather be influenced by something you can’t change or something you can?




One response

26 06 2010
Tweets that mention Competitive Edge? « Passion Fruit --

[…] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Kim (Lance) Grant, Kim (Lance) Grant. Kim (Lance) Grant said: Passion Fruit – Competitive Edge? […]

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