Assuming the Worst

One of the biggest mistakes people make in business is writing someone off because of one aspect about that person that they may not like. This often leads to soured relationships and underestimating the competition.

We're all human and we're all flawed in one way or another. You don't have to agree with someone 100% of the time, but disagreeing with them doesn't automatically make them a bad person or a terrible company.

Be careful not to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Assuming that one flaw or difference in opinion defines the whole is a dangerous practice in both business and life.

Originally published May 2010


Your successful competitors often have more than you:

More money.
More employees.
More clients.
More press.

More darlings they refuse to kill.
More preconceived ideas.
More “this is just how this market is.”
More baggage and red tape.

Someone will always have more than you.

There will also always be other people who consider you the successful competitor who has more than they do.

Originally published January 2015

The Other Comparison Trap

We all know that comparison is toxic, that what we see on social media is another person’s “highlight reel” and not the emotional nitty gritty nor full picture of their life.

This type of comparison falls into the “They have that, so I should, too” or the “They do/have that and I don’t, therefore I’m missing out” categories.

The other type of comparison is much more insidious. It falls into the “I don’t like or do that, so they shouldn’t, either” category. This type of comparison is sanctimonious and can be easier to justify because it positions ourselves as smarter, more enlightened, more productive. It positions ourselves as better.

Except we're not better than anyone else. To think we are is a narrow viewpoint and keeps us closed to opportunities.

As long as everyone is making their choices based on informed opinions, then one opinion doesn’t trump another.

You can disagree with someone and still like them. You can disagree with someone, and dislike them, and yet still respect their right to make their own decisions.

We all (hopefully) make the choices that are best for our families and kids. We all make the choices that are best for our respective businesses. The types of balance, harmony, and margin needed are different for each person.

The way someone else chooses to run their life doesn’t need your stamp of approval, Facebook like, or Instagram heart.

In the words of Amy Poehler, “Good for her! Not for me."

Originally posted January 2015