Friendly Competition in Business
If you work for someone you should always be cordial and network with the competition. For one thing if your job is no more than you have potential employers in the offing. Besides you never know what you might learn. Even if you are the owner of a company you may need assistance or help with an item or project so it's always good to have rapport with competing companies but, for me, I opt for friendly competition as best.
For years, until I switched industries, I never had a resume. If I found myself in the position of needing a new job I'd do some networking and shortly after got another job. Now I've started my own company so I am networking for business and for camaraderie but wasn't aware of any company offering was what I was doing until recently.
It's funny how things happen, where as, I was contacted by a competitor who offers a similar service as I provide but they're not in my industry. This company and the owner is a featured speaker at an upcoming annual industry trade show in my industry. She heard about me and wanted to include me in her presentation. Without missing a beat I packed off literature to get passed out or place on tables. Talk about free advertising. I never hesitated but should I have?
We never met before but if I were a different person might I view it differently? Just for the sake of this article I decided to explore another viewpoint as if I were another person being contacted about this. So what if I became suspicious or didn't want to be associated with competition? Does this person have an ulterior motive? I don't know what it could be but there are probably more people than I could imagine who would be leery. While different circumstances might make me think differently in this case I was happy for the plug. Yes I may lose business but I think I will gain more. For me I only considered the path I took; I was getting handed a freebie and I jumped on it. In the process I now have a new friendly competitor.
This is what you need to you in life, in work and anywhere. Constantly stay in touch and connect. Despite all the latest inventions we still need to have "humans" do the work. Humans talk to each other, humans connect. Computers don't connect, people do and the vehicle to connect is ever-evolving.
So don't pass up an opportunity to mutually benefit from a connection. After all, when it's all said and done, passing along information is how we function as humans.
Added: 07 февраля 2010
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