A keystone of American business for over two centuries has been the counsel of the eminent New England philosopher and scholar Ralph Waldo Emerson, who is credited as the author of the saying, “Build a better mousetrap, and the world will beat a path to your door.” It has inspired inventors and would-be inventors ever since. But you don’t have to be an inventor to profit from Emerson’s advice.
What holds true for an invention holds true for your firm as well. Are you unhappy with how your business is performing? Do other designers seem to be busy while you’re scrounging for clients? Build a better mousetrap. What can you do better than your competition? Are you a better designer? Are you a better salesperson? Do you run a tighter ship and always deliver your projects on time and within budget? Are you easier to work with and get great reviews from your clients? Do you have a knack for finding that perfect, one-of-a-kind product, artwork or accessory? Do you make sure you’ve dotted all the i’s and crossed all the t’s before closing out a project and take the time to carefully explain everything to the client and walk them through all the improvements you’ve provided for them, leaving them with all the appropriate manuals and care instructions?
Whatever it is, or they are, you are sure to do some things better than your competitors. So compete with them on those things, not on what they’re selling. There are clients out there who will value you for the gifts, talents and experience you have. If there’s room in the world for a Picasso, a Warhol and a Jackson Pollock, there’s room for you, too.
Need some help figuring out how to position your talents in your market? Contact me and let’s talk it through. I have helped dozens of designers to find their better mousetrap and enjoy a more profitable and satisfying business.