Capitalize on your Strengths

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In case you haven't heard, Radio Shack filed for bankruptcy. The small electronics store attempted to compete with the likes of Best Buy, hhgregg, and other large companies only to fail. Having worked there years ago, I can tell you it's demise had begun even then.

Was there any hope for Radio Shack? Possibly, but not as competition to it's much larger counterparts. Radio Shack's small, strip mall stores could not expect to directly compete with huge buildings that carried everything from refrigerators to 80" televisions. So what could it have done differently?

They should have played to their strength: provide small, obscure parts and tech that you couldn't find anywhere else. Sure, you can find anything on the internet, but enthusiasts and a segment of the vintage market would know that Radio Shack is the one place they could go to find that diode and buy it today.

Even while I worked there, many people came looking for such oddities and walked out because we exchanged our part bins for smartphone kiosks (which they were not interested in). Sometimes you have to adapt to survive; meet your competition head on and just do something exponentially better.

Other times, you need to get out of that space and go where there's little to no competition. Revert to something no one else is doing and survive. Know your strengths, your weaknesses, and the strengths and weaknesses of your competition. If you're strong enough, compete. If not, find your unique strength and be the only player in the game.

Stephen Roblesstrengths