Compete or Win?

On Winning vs. Competing

You often hear, especially in sports and business, the refrain that teams and companies are “competitive.” Usually this means an ability to operate at a level that achieves better than expected performance but doesn’t result in sustained winning.

We all know competitive teams — the Green Bay Packers, Houston Rockets, St. Louis Cardinals  — and competitive organizations — Lowe’s, Reebok, Airbus, and GM.

But they differ from truly Winning organizations like the New England Patriots, Golden State Warriors, Google, Nike, Tesla, and Amazon.

The difference between the two can be explained in one word: Attitude

Winning organizations and brands possess an attitude or mindset that permeates the entire enterprise, resulting in a system, culture and set of operating principles that recognize one thing: Accomplishment. Consistent Accomplishment. Championships in sports and Relevance in business.

Being Competitive is akin to convincing yourself you don’t need to get better in any significant way. As long as you are in the game, so to speak, it’s enough.

Competing typically involves three things:

  1. Me-Too” Capabilities – Competitive organizations replicate key capabilities providing a solid alternative
  2. Competent Skills – Staff is knowledgeable and well-rounded
  3. Clear Identity – There is a specific purpose and position in the marketplace

To rise above, consistently Winning organizations and brands follow a different set of rules:

  1. Differentiated Offerings – Always ahead of the curve in terms of client needs and market expectations
  2. Innovation – Upending the status quo constantly introducing new thinking and approaches
  3. Unmatched Expertise – Staff consists of people with noted experience from myriad backgrounds
  4. Strong POV – Conveying a multitude of ideas, arguments, and perspectives

In the end, Winning organizations are disrupters. They never rest on their laurels. Each successful year or engagement is dissected for improvement. They don’t adhere to industry conventions and take risks smartly if it results in advantage.

The little secret in all of this is that it’s not perfect. Far from it.

Winning companies set the bar, but may not form the foundation.

Competitive organizations may have a better system or process, but not truly move the needle. Competent in delivery, Competitive companies can sustain a long-running track record of performance. And therein lies the deception. You may think you’re Winning.

In today’s hyper-challenging environment, Winning requires a seismic upending of the conventional. It begins with an attitude that defines how the business will stay ahead, making the right decisions and investments, and measuring success at the highest plane.

If you haven’t figured it out, W2O adheres to the Winning model as evidenced by its innovations and people.

YOU make the difference in all we do and being here means you are not simply a Competitor, but a Winner — always playing to Win, not just to Compete!

It certainly demands a high level of engagement and development, but the benefit is being part of a Winning team – one that is respected and revered.

And so I’m very grateful at this time of year to be alongside each and every one of you seeking answers and solving problems to keep our clients successful.

Let’s Keep Winning . . . Together,