I was at a networking event once when a rather pompous chap declared that ‘business was the ultimate sport.’
What a load of old rubbish.
Business is a competition for sure. There are certainly parallels between the two and lessons we can learn from top sportspeople
But you can’t really compare a profit and loss sheet or quarterly results with running ultra-marathons, the Tour de France or boxing.
And on the subject of boxing and business…..
I watched with open mouthed disbelief as Andy Ruiz Junior shocked the world by stopping local hero Anthony Joshua in New York.
Like almost everyone in the World apart from Ruiz Jnr’s family and friends I thought he had no chance. A chubby, baby faced bloke up against the Greek God like physique of our AJ.
But it didn’t matter what the vast majority thought or how Ruiz looked it was his self-belief that mattered, and he went into the fight thinking he could win.
It’s the same in business and life. There’s no point doing something if you don’t believe in it and think you can achieve it.
I’ve lost count of the number of times people have warned me off doing a new magazine for an area because in their opinion ‘it won’t work there.’ But I’ve always trusted my judgement and my team’s ability to prove people wrong.
And like all top-level sportspeople you need to be passionate about what you do.
All the successful businesspeople I know are passionate about their businesses. Whether it’s estate agency, day care centres or plumbing – they all love what they do.
And just like sporting superstars the best businesspeople aren’t afraid of taking on a challenge or facing new rivals. Ruiz used Instagram to ask promoter Eddie Hearn for the opportunity to face the previously invincible Joshua.
Ruiz Jnr had a clear game plan and as I’ve often mentioned before all businesses need a plan. For business owners we make plans for marketing, accounts and growth. The clearer the plan the greater the chance of success.
Ruiz Junior had a clear plan when it came to fighting AJ. He told a reporter 24 hours before the fight that ‘when he hits me hard, I’m going to respond by hitting him harder.’ And that’s exactly what happened. AJ knocked him down, Ruiz got up and fired back with even harder shots flooring AJ and sowing the seeds for what happened in round 7.
Every business has competition. Every business is measured against the level of their rivals. And every business owner needs to realise that most of their rivals would do a little jig if they went out of business, leaving more room and more money for them.
And that’s why being competitive is a key business trait in my opinion. I’ll often look at publications like ours and assess their strong and weak points.
I’ll look at what they are doing and work out how we can be better than them – in all areas.
This is what Team Ruiz did with AJ – they assessed where they thought they could get to AJ and executed their plan perfectly.
I’ll leave you with one of my favourite quotes which sums up my attitude to competition and rivals.
Thanks for reading.