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the market-place of opportunity

By pa360, Feb 4 2015 06:04AM

An opportunity is not a guarantee. It may be a possibility or a probability, but it is not a guarantee. Everyday we 'trade' in opportunity, for example by applying for jobs in the hope of being recruited, by extending our networks in the hope of making valued new contacts, by shopping in a high street sale in the hope of picking up a bargain, or by making an investment in the hope of securing a financial return. That's opportunity for you. It is a free-market trade in hope. The hope of gaining an advantage, a benefit or a competitive edge.

I have often commented on the 'market-place' of opportunity. Much as that might sound like a catchy sound bite, it is not. I genuinely do see opportunity as a vibrant market-place. Like any other trading space it is both actual and virtual allowing us to exchange ideas, acquire skills, take risks, explore and venture out. You don't even need to be awake to trade in the market-place of opportunity. How many times have you read testimonies of people who have come up with truly great ideas whilst asleep?

To trade successfully in 'opportunity stock' there are four things that you need to do. First, know your market-place. Find out what drives sentiment and preference in your chosen area of interest. In addition, start to develop an understanding of where the market gaps are and think about things that you can do, to plug those gaps and meet unmet need.

Second, have something to offer that is marketable. The strength of your offer will depend to a large extent on its uniqueness. In a market-place saturated with products that look alike and sound alike, a product that looks different and sounds different, will attract attention. Make yourself identifiably different to others. If you do, you will be indispensible.

Third, think value. A focus on value will help you to ensure that your product is relevant and tailored to the needs of the market place. A space rocket and a skateboard are both modes of transportation, but only one will take you to the moon.

Fourth, have something to spend. I have often said that in the market-place of opportunity, your brand is your currency. The stronger your brand, the more you will have to spend. Having a stronger trading currency gives you significantly more leverage, bargaining power and choice.

To maximise opportunity, make yourself marketable.

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