There is nothing like some good old competition to motivate one towards success. There are many stories stating competition as a reason for reaching one’s goal, sometimes before schedule. Questions that come to mind are how much is too much and is it crippling instead of helping?
These questions came to mind from a long thought process I experienced spanning over the past two weeks. I thought about a former client of mine, some old co-workers, and an Australian photographer by the name of Sue Bryce that I admire. I thought about systems and knowledge of these systems. I thought about the sharing of this knowledge and how some folks actually keep this knowledge to themselves so no one will try to duplicate it. It was this latter thought that inspired this post.
Why would one want to hold back knowledge that could help another? This confused me greatly. Going back to Sue Bryce, I first heard of her through a workshop she gave (her second) with CreativeLIVE based out of Seattle, WA. For those that do not know about CreativeLIVE you need to get hip to this way of learning and sharing. It is AWESOME! Anyhoo, Sue is a portrait photographer. She photographs women and makes them look even more stunning then they do naturally. She has a system in place consisting of poses, props, marketing stradegy, etc, that she’s willing to share with the masses. This system has made her successful. It can make anyone else who is willing to follow the system successful if they do it well. It HAS!
There are other artists, business folks, computer geeks, etc, that are also willing to share their systems to anyone who is willing to learn. They realize that there is a possibility that one of their pupils/mentees/students will surpass them in revenue and popularity one day. They welcome this! What better feeling to know that you contributed to someone else’s success? That’s good Karma in my book.
To the ones that keep their knowledge under lock and key and/or use cutthroat tactics to demolish their competition, to each their own. You may not be mentor material. You may not have enough confidence in your position. Maybe too much fear of losing your top spot, if it was even yours to begin with. This kind of behavior alienates you from prospective clients, in my honest opinion. The one coming to you for help may be that recommendation that can change everything. Open up. Help another. So many more doors can be opened and available. This is an awesome thing!
Just to clarify, I am not saying ALL competition is evil. No. Good natured competition can be a great thing. It can move all involved parties even more forward then they could have ever gone on their own. That kind of motivation is useful. Just keep it clean. Keep it civil. Play nice. Oh, and don’t forget to toast to everyone’s success over cocktails. 😉
*Image compliments of http://www.stevewatsononline.com/3-top-ways-to-keep-an-eye-on-your-competition*