What is your unfair advantage?
Do you even know what I am talking about when I say unfair advantage? If not, I think it's such an important concept that you should learn it right now.
We all have one but most of us either don’t know what it is, or if we do it is not used effectively to our advantage. Some of us think we know what it is but we couldn’t be farther from the truth.
A couple weeks ago I discussed how Oswald Cattle Company’s unfair advantage was their BLM winter grazing permit. Every ranch has one and it is up to the ranch owner to figure out what that unfair advantage is and take advantage of it.
This same concept applies for our personal and business lives as well. Your unfair advantage is a skill or asset no one else or very few in your respective niche have. It gives you an edge against your competition and to be successful it is up to you to use this advantage as much as possible to shape your life and if you so desire, create a business.
For me, my unfair advantage has been my communication abilities -- writing, blogging, social media networking. Developing these skills through writing for my personal blog and other media outlets and also serving as Public Relations chair and blog co-editor for the NCBA Young Producers’ Council in 2011 and part of 2012 were invaluable to allow me to realize and then build upon my unfair advantage.
From these experiences I have went on to be able to write for publications like Beef Producer, in addition to several others, continually building my portfolio and giving credibility to my unfair advantage.
At this point you may be saying to yourself, "What if I don’t know what my unfair advantage is yet?" For some people, including myself, it takes them a little longer to realize what they are really good at or enjoy doing the most. Many times we start out with a goal. In my case it was "I’m going to college and then vet school. I’m going to be a horse vet."
That couldn’t be any farther from the truth of what I am actually doing with my life today. I canned the idea of vet school around my junior year of undergraduate. I realized that what I had originally thought I wanted for my life wasn't what I really wanted at all.
Things changed. I went to grad school instead and somewhere along the way I discovered that I liked to write. I also started to realize I had a knack for social media. It was hard for me to accept this at first. I tried vehemently to stick to my "new plan" of grad school and becoming a forage extension specialist, but it was not to be. Once I owned up to my unfair advantage and embraced my true calling, that of a writer and business marketer, life got a whole lot easier.
So for those of you still trying to figure out what your unfair advantage is – take a step back, evaluate what you are doing with your life, and you may find your unfair advantage has been right in front of you all along.
For those of you who know your unfair advantage … what are you waiting for?
Embrace it, own it, and get on with it! Along the way, try to help others realize what theirs is, as well.