November 21, 2011, 5:00 am

Do You Like Competition?

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Business
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Some people hate it with a passion.


Others can’t sleep when they face. They get nauseous, anxious, just freak out or freeze when faced by the “opponent”.


While others, crazy people like me, are delighted to jump into the game and get ready to rumblllle!


Do you like competition? I love it!


But it’s not a matter of being better than anyone else and beating the shit out of him.


It’s not a matter of crushing the competition or going to war.


In fact, competition is not about the others; it’s about YOU!


When you compete, the only person you should try to beat is yourself. You should use the competitors as a source of motivation, even inspiration. But at no time, should you get into a battle with a competitor. This only leads to the vicious cycle of envy and deceit (when it doesn’t lead to cheating and murder… lol!).


This is how I became one of the top 3 Financial Planners in Montreal


The financial world is a very competitive field. In fact, if you don’t like competition, don’t even think going there. You will hate it with a passion. For example, every week, we have our rankings published on our intranet. We can compare ourselves to people in our branch, the region or across the entire company. All results are published. Some people can’t stand it, especially if they don’t perform well: week after week. Others dislike it as well because they feel an additional pressure. Personally, I just love to be compared to others. Not because I want to be the first one on top all the time, but because I like to see the carrot I am chasing.


When people ask me at work who my main competitors are, I always answer: “anyone above me in this week’s ranking”. I don’t really care who’s in front of me when I look at the report. I only care about how they made it and what can I do differently this week to surpass them. It tells me who to listen to, who to follow and who to ask for help or advice if I want to improve my skills.


Then, if I do everything that is within my control and someone is still ahead of me (did I ever mention that I was nominated for the past 3 years but never won a single year????), I head home with a smile on my face. Because I know that I did what I could and that I beat myself once again. It becomes to be a perpetual race to become better everyday. After 3 years, this one is obviously mine. I have just achieved my best year ever and am, once again in the top 3 in Montreal (I have to wait ’til December to know if I’ve won!)


Here’s another example


I’m a fierce competitor.


I really like to win.


But what I value most is not the victory; it’s what I have done to win. This is why, even when I don’t win (‘cause it happens all the time!), I still feel good about myself.


I sometimes tell you about my son, William. He is the little boy any father would dream of: tall, strong, smart, handsome (yeah I know, I’m totally biased!) and soooo good at all sports. This summer, I was the coach for his soccer team. Do you know when I was the most proud of him and his team? When we lost 7-6 in a tournament match. Why? Because “my” kids were losing 3-0 and they never gave-up. They played until the very last minute and showed the other team that they were ready to play as a team and win (or lose) as a team too. I really felt that everybody on the team gave their best and it led to the best game of the tournament (according to all the parents and the referees on the field). So I don’t care if my boys lost or not, I know that we played the game till the end.


Why competition is the most amazing thing that could ever happen to you


Here’s my take on competition: this is the best thing that can happen to any human being. It can be at work, in sport or when you run your own business. I remember one very important lesson I learned in one of my marketing classes:


“if there is no competition, there is no market”.


All right, everybody will bring up the Microsoft example to screw my point. But besides Microsoft and a few other exceptions, there are only 2 reasons that explain why you are in a market with no competitors:

1-      Nobody is interested in that market because there is no money to be made (i.e. people ain’t buying)

2-      There will be a market and you are the very first to discover it. Therefore, you will have to work 10 times harder to develop the market and convince people they need your service/product.


On the opposite side, competition will not only bring competitors. It will also:

–          Educate your market (make people aware of your business).

–          Optimize the market (since you are in competition, everybody is looking to offer the best product in the world to their clients).

–          Optimize the cost (while it often equals lowering margin benefits for entrepreneurs, this is very good for the customer).

–          It makes you proud at the end of the day when you succeed.



look at what is happening with the niche site duel:

We all talk about our sites and link to others people sites. This increase the number of links to each site, enables us to swap readers and we have more visitors to our niche sites 😉 (don’t forget to go see Canadian Dividend Stock 😉 ).


You don’t like competition? Then go home!


Honestly, if you dislike competition, you probably dislike working and trying to give the best of what you have. So stop what you are doing and find yourself a great job for the government! However, I can assure you of one thing; there is no way you will be proud of yourself, be proud of going the extra mile at the end of the day. This is why I get up every morning with a smile in my face!



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I thrive on competition. I feel like I am the best at everything I choose to put my efforts towards so I don’t have a problem proving it 🙂

Competition is a good motivator, but not the only one. I am self motivated to be the best I can be.