At the beginning of this post, I really didn’t know what title was going to be most suitable for what I’m about to say but I guess as I roll with it, the title is going to take shape. Here’s what inspired my post. I have this friend who complained to me a long time ago on how she started a business in her workplace and her colleague who was also doing that same business boldly confronted her that she was taking her customers. Her colleague’s frustration was based on the fact that my friend had a business before that didn’t conflict with hers but suddenly my friend had changed her type of products and veered into her lane becoming a threat. If you are a bit confused, let me explain it better in layman’s terms using fake names and fake items;
Madam Gee* used to sell Candles, while Madam Bee* used to sell papers. Later Madam Gee decided to sell papers and was doing great at it. So Madam Bee sparked. Lmao
First, I was shocked that someone could boldly tell the other person to make decisions to please them. I thought that was selfish. In retrospect, I’m putting the question out there. Would you get mad if someone who was into another business, suddenly gets into your own line of business and serves as a potential threat to your clients?
Moving forward, I didn’t see anything wrong with that. Here’s why. I believe the sky is too grand a platform for two people to even struggle for same spot. I totally get the sentiments of Madam Bee because no one likes to lose clients but if your new competition is making a headway more than you who is a veteran in that area, then it’s time to analyse, unlearn, relearn and re-strategize than going to your competition, asking her/him to step down. This is not a mafia movie and inasmuch as you want to be ‘Don Cappuccino’ and dictate other people’s lives, you just don’t have the right to.
Now, if you are the one on the recieving end, being accused of being a competition and this has made you go into your shell and not go for what you truly want, then you need to ask yourself these questions;
What is my objective towards offering this same product/service?
Was I being inspired to offer same products or am I doing it because the others are successful in it?
Is this actually my lane?
If you answer these questions genuinely, then you’d know if you are guilty of raining on someone else’s parade or not. If you are, it’s left for you to know the right steps to take but if you are not, then make no apologies for being a strong competitor.
I am such a dreamer, even as a teenager. There are ventures in life that I wanted to go for but most times for fear of being judged as a ‘wanna-be’, ‘second-to best’, all because someone has started that venture first, I’d just stiffle those dreams. The funny thing is that the person who must have started it is on another side of the planet but I just didn’t want to be called ‘second’. I also felt I would be hurting the person by providing same service. This thinking was so naive. During my blossoming years of really taking my music craft seriously, these were the thoughts that flooded my head and I became lackadaisical. I had no idea there was something called a ‘healthy competition’. Life itself is a rat race and you just have to be tenacious to go for what you want. I totally would care about people’s opinion until I tried paying my bills with their opinion…That’s when I got the epiphany that people’s opinions don’t matter. I found out that whatever you think that you are doing on this earth, someone has done it before you, someone is doing it with you and someone will do that same thing after you. So a better approach to life is to be inspired by people who have walked that walk before you, be able to rub minds with people doing same thing with you and be that person who would inspire people who’d want to walk in your shoes in future. No need to tear someone else down or feel threatened about the next person’s business.
When I started blogging, I was super scared because of my previous mindset. I heard about blogging in 2007 when my mentor at the radio station told me I could start one because she thought I had the charm for it. I was more interested in being like her, a renown OAP, looking forward to taking her radio spots and filling in for her which she loved also. When I decided to start blogging was 9 years later; when I looked around my world in Saudi Arabia and I wondered how I would be expressive in a reclusive environment, then Eureka!…Bubu’s Boulevard was born. I fought so hard with myself, hoping no-one will address me as a ‘Linda-Ikeji-wannabe’ because she was the face of blogging in Africa. The funny thing is that I wasn’t a regular visitor of her blog but loved her tenacity. Then I found out there were thousands of blogs out there and my heart sank. Not only should I be worried about being called second-best, I should be worried about being called last. Lmao. Thank God for a vision, I knew my path this time and I fought for it. I launched this site and said if I fail, I fail. Ever since, all the noise and fear in my head of starting has disappeared and it’s quiet in my lane now. If someone comes up to say they want to blog like me, I should be happy that now I’m inspiring instead of wanting to tear them down or bicker about how they are ‘copying’ me. You feel me?!
So this is how I see life and competition. Have a healthy competition. If you feel threatened, ask why? This is only my opinion though. So back to the question of the day, Does Madame Bee have any right to caution Madame Gee to stay away from her type of business? Would you get mad if someone who was into another business, suddenly gets into your own line of business and serves as a potential threat to your clients?
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