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How to Stand Out in a Competitive Field

Updated: May 12, 2022

Everyone is different, as an entrepreneur and leader it's your responsibility to figure out ways to make yourself stand out.

We live in an age where individuality is both celebrated and suppressed. On the one hand, the tech and social media boom have (for better and for worse) made it easier than ever for people to share their opinions and their self with the world. Social media influencers are a hot commodity in the corporate world right now, and they’re a direct byproduct of that boom. On the other hand, modern corporate culture still has a lot of catching up to do in catching on to the powers of individuality, with many companies still favoring uniformity.

When you’re trying to distinguish yourself as an entrepreneur, however, you want to do everything in your power to call attention to yourself. That means finding good ways of differentiating yourself from your competition.

"Watch them, study them, listen to them, and if you are lucky enough, take the chance to talk to them."

1. Choose Good Role Models

The New York Yankees. The New England Patriots. Duke University Basketball. Manchester United. Whether you’re a sports fan or you couldn’t tell one form of “sportsball” from another, chances are you have at least heard of the successes of these franchises. They rank among the most successful teams in the world, past and present, and routinely make news broadcasts and magazine covers in victory – which is, after all, precisely what you want to do.

Whether or not you care about Aaron Judge or Coach K, you’ll want to be sure to choose good role models in your own industry. Watch them, study them, listen to them, and if you are lucky enough, take the chance to talk to them. Learn their secrets to success, and use their model as the basis for your own trajectory.

2. Focus versus Flexibility

On the one hand, focusing on your role models and your plan is vital for success. On the other hand, even the best coaches and quarterbacks know that sometimes even the best-laid plans go astray, and you need to audible and change tack on the fly. Know when it’s time to focus on the plan and plow ahead despite the difficulty. Know when the opposite is true, and reassessment and changes are called for.

3. Challenge Yourself

You’ll never make it to the top unless you challenge yourself to get there. Welcome competition, work hard, build skills, and do everything you can to get better.

There’s no greater individuality than victory. Work to build your skills, train yourself, and learn from the best, and you’ll be ready to take your place among the champions of your field.

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