No two industries are alike. From the international waters of large multinational corporations to the major boulevards of Los Angeles, there are clear differences between any burgeoning industry and the companies that power it. However, while industries and businesses grow at different rates, the issues they face are essentially the same. As a business expands and grows, its backyard gets bigger, and with that comes more challenges, hiccups, and opportunities.
When you look at your industry, do you see a sea of competitors clawing for the next client? Are you in a red ocean, as the old Harvard books says? One of the greatest opportunities to improve the whole industry and reduce the carnage among competitors can be found in one simple word: Stature. This isn’t the same as profile, exposure, or exclusivity. While it can be tackled individually, when a whole business community works together to improve their stature collectively — that’s where the real progress is made. Money may be the ultimate motivation, but it’s a minor benefit in the final outcome of a raising the stature of a whole industry.
Simply put: Every industry, at its heart, needs to know who they are and how they want other industries to talk about them. Coming together to implement and unify messaging tactics, in a collaborative manner, can be an invaluable and formative step in getting to the heart of the matter. This is especially true if that means utilizing a third party to convey that message: what you say about yourself isn’t nearly as powerful as what others say about you. Is your industry coherent enough to have the stature needed to have a reputation spoken by others? Part of reaching this level may mean cutting the wheat from the chaff and designating professionals in your field at a higher (and therefore others at a lower) level, a message that may alienate parts of your community. That’s OK – creating levels of distinction within your industry (such as special designations that require more than just payment to unlock) does more than make some businesses better than others, it provides an “elite” perception to all prospective clients.
Have you considered the stature of your industry as a whole? If so, maybe now is the time to organize if you haven’t already. It’s up to you to make the difference.
John Bwarie is an impact professional working to connect people and solve problems while focusing on an actionable outcome. He has worked for elected officials directly and serves dozens of others in other capacities. Follow him on Twitter andLinkedIn.