It’s very easy to fall into a pit of sulkiness. I admit it – I was just in one whenever I reflect on my life’s progress. A lot of times, I do not hit my goals, which is partially my fault. I tend to set impossible goals. What I forget to do is to appreciate what I have now.

When it comes to small businesses, it is very easy to compare yourself to your competitors. It could be because they project the appearance of success or perhaps they produce a seemingly better product. The reasons are endless.

Whether or not your competitors are truly successful, or adept at creating a facade of success, stop comparing or copying. Chances are, they don’t know what they’re doing either.

comparison is the thief of joy

Focus on your own goals. Map out a plan on achieving what you define as success. Then measure your progress to see if you are getting the marks. Without analytics, how will you know whether you are moving forward?

  • Observe
  • Plan
  • Execute
  • Measure

Observe

When it comes to competitors, it’s not a bad idea to sleep with one eye open. However, use it to only observe their activities. Don’t outright copy because they could be experimenting [as well]. You could very well be copying mistakes!

If you want, there are different ways to keep tabs.

  • Google Alerts – Alerts is a powerful tool where you can insert a word, phrase, and so forth and Google will email you whenever it comes across them. Plus, it’s free!
  • Twitter Search – If you are curious about the Twitter activity of a competitor, you can setup a column on Hootsuite or a program of your choice and it will display all RTs, tweets, and @replies.
  • Facebook – Facebook Like Pages are pretty public. Feel free to observe, and then get distracted by your own Newsfeed.

Plan

Set your own goals. How do you define success? Once you set your goals, your strategies and tactics fall into place. Within a short time, you will have your road map.

driving

Execute

When you have your business roadmap, it is a matter of executing your actionable steps. Keep in mind that while it is good to set impossible goals, so that you can achieve feats beyond your comfort zone, do not burn out.

Find balance in activities you enjoy doing. And do them often.

snorkel

Measure

What to measure is relative to what you are aiming for. For example, it can be any of the following:

Whatever it may be, always remember to setup some form of analytics.

Conclusion

Set your own goals. Do your own thing. And stop comparing and copying. Chances are, your competitors don’t know what they’re doing either.

Have a wonderful week!

Lawrence Chan

P.S. If money did not matter, what is one vocation you would not mind doing? Is it different than what you are doing now? Comment below!