In my experience as an entrepreneur I have had the unfortunate opportunity to see things done in business the worst ways possible, and have gotten to witness firsthand what it does to the marketplace, and to a company's culture. Today I will share those lessons with you.
How NOT To Succeed In Business
1. Try to steal your competitors clients
This is a sure fire way to create a culture of scarcity within your own organization and set an example for your employees to be competitive, instead of cooperative, with one another.
You simply cannot define one cultural message within your organization, and then do the complete opposite in the marketplace. So don't worry, lucky for you, your employees learn by example, not by what you say, so they will quickly learn the true message you intended: "step on whoever you have to to get to the top".
Maybe your competitors just have more clients than you do. It couldn't be that they actually have a better product or service, could it? Nah. You'd better focus all your resources on stealing clients instead of differentiating in the marketplace. That's the best way to win.
And it's also a great way to make enemies out of your competitors. Which brings me to my next point...
2. Believe that all competitors are your enemies
A great way to get left behind in the marketplace is to believe your competitors are you enemies. This mindset of being at war can motivate people for a little while, so ride it while you can.
This is also the best way to prevent creativity from occurring. If you're busy watching what everyone else is doing, you can be sure to prevent your team from doing any of that new-fangled "innovation" we hear so much about. You can be sure a culture like that will also keep all those annoying creative people out of your organization.
And you can definitely be sure to avoid all those competitors bothering you with any alliances or partnerships to grow hand in hand, cause who wants that? Businesses that look at their competitors as enemies are sure to create a self-fulfilling prophecy and will be perfectly safe from entering any uncharted waters of collaboration with competitors.
3. Cling to the outdated belief that there is not enough business out there for everyone
Again, this is one of the best belief systems to support the culture of scarcity in your organization. If you prefer to sharpen your swords for the marketplace "blood bath" instead of innovating for the "blue ocean", then definitely refuse to let go of this belief!
Your team will follow your lead and soon everyone in your organization will be focused on cutthroat business instead of innovation, and you will be eating the dust of your competitors.
4. Feign interest in purchasing or investing in a business to learn how they operate, then take their ideas
Besides the obvious morale and ethical issues that anyone with a soul can recognize in the above scenario, this is a great way to show your team you have no creativity or ability to differentiate in the marketplace. (And believe me, this HAPPENS!)
Creatives are attracted to a creative culture, so if you want prevent your company from ever being innovative, this is a great strategy to stick to the status quo and support that culture of scarcity you've worked so hard to create.
5. Lie to clients about your competitors
This one might be my favorite. When competing with another company for a client, you should definitely bad mouth them and tell lies about their services to clients. Whatever you do, don't focus on the value your company can provide.
Instead follow the lead of our current political climate and bite and snarl and kick. It really makes you look good to the client, especially when they choose your competitor over you and realize what you're made of.