Collaboration over Competition

Hey friends! I am so glad I wrote this post over the last week since I am pretty sick today. Check it out below.

I have been thinking a lot lately about how competitive certain small businesses are. And I never understood it until recently. My husband owns a brewery and, let me tell you, the brewing industry is the most collaborative and collegial industry that I have ever known. These individuals and organizations encourage one another, brew together and even talk positively with their customers about their "competitors", encouraging them to go and try the other guy's product! You see, in the brewing industry, everyone knows there is no such thing as the end all, be all "best beer". OK, maybe you have a favorite, but don't miss the point. The collaboration and collegiality among brewers is second to none. Other industries, take note. 

I have worked in corporate, network marketing and education. I have been an entrepreneur, an employee, a boss. (I say "boss" because until you really learn how and what a leader is, all you are is a boss. And, yes, I admit I have filled that role.) All industries I have been in -- super competitive. Whether it is for the promotion, the product, the customer, the "center stage of expertise", the competition is exhausting. The tenor around people vying for the top spots in any company or industry can be maddening, causing many individuals to turn away. The common denominators of all of this competition = ego + insecurity. I want to encourage you today to set down ego and, especially, insecurity and think about how you can serve others. 

For unless our position comes from a position of servant leadership, we will never truly be successful. So what is servant leadership? This is leading by example. Doing for others around you what they may not be able to do for themselves. Stepping out of yourself and into someone else by doing something positive for them. It works in real life and it works in business.  Think about who in your same industry you can collaborate with today, to benefit that person, your target market/customers/students/kids/etc instead of just benefiting you.

The world and your heart will be a much better place. Have grace and make an impact today.

Cheering for you,

Lynne