In response to my post The Win-Win Benefits Of Collaborative Professional Service Marketing, Anne Galloway commented:

Never view the competition as the enemy!
A couple of years ago I met someone who I first believed was competition (of course she wasn’t because of our individual skills and experience) – we now run successful workshops together, in addition to our own businesses. It’s great to have someone to bounce ideas off and our workshops are far more dynamic than if we presented them alone. We have since tightened up on our individual niches and focus the workshops more towards these niches so we both get more clients. So collaboration is definitely a win-win.

Gotta love collaborative win-win scenarios like the one Anne helped to create. Thanks for sharing your experience Anne.

I really like the first sentence of her comment. Among the question that it raises for me is ‘who is your competition?’

Everyone Is Your Competition

Realistically, our competition can can include any business from the largest multinational corporation to the neighbor running a yard sale. In one way or another, they are all competing for our attention and income.

Take for example, my experience of partnering with one of the largest Canadian banks as outlined in the post about Collaborative Professional Service Marketing. Each of us in our way was competing for the attention and money of owners of small businesses.

However, by partnering on the book and speaking tour, we were able to help each other better serve a small slice of a common market.

No One Is Your Competition

On the other hand, since each of us is unique, no one provides the same kind of service, the same way that we do. Given this individual distinctiveness, none of us has any competition.

Anne’s experience confirms the distinctiveness of seemingly competing service professionals…and the benefits of collaboration.

As Anne pointed out…Never view the competition as the enemy! Let’s reframe our perception of the competition. Instead of seeing other businesses as chasing the same potential clients as you, try thinking of them as potential allies working together to better attract and serve more clients.