What happens when the sharks spot your new business idea?

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English: Great white shark at Isla Guadalupe, ...
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The shark spotters have spotted sharks in False Bay with the authorities confirming that they had spotted a shark near Fish Hoek beach. One of the shark spotters says when you see a lot of bird activity, seals or dolphins in the area this means there are fish about that attract the sharks.

The small beach of Fish Hoek has been struggling over the past few years because of the number of sharks that regularly enter the bay. Media coverage of shark attacks, which have occurred between Clovelly and Jagger’s Walk along Fish Hoek beach, has been prominent. The number of shark sightings and shark attacks led to the Western Cape authorities to introduce a shark net for the first time at Fish Hoek beach. Only time will tell whether these measures are effective.

The sharks in False Bay have begun to recover because of the protection of species such as the Great White shark. No longer are anglers allowed to go out to Seal Island and hoo sharks. Seal Island itself is covered with seals which provides a rich source of food for the sharks. Sadly, other species such as the African Oyster Catcher and the Southern Right whale have perhaps not recovered as well as have the sharks. The increase in the population in the Western Cape has resulted in thousands flocking to the beaches in summer and this activity has provided perhaps interest for sharks although some experts would disagree.

The increase in the shark population reminds one of the increase in competitors in this economy where despite the official figures more people are starting new businesses. People start new ventures not only because they may not be able to find formal employment but because they have a yearning to start something of their own or to create a source of income that suits their lifestyle.

In a typical town you may find that there has been a fish and chips outlet for a number of years but another small business owner comes in with a different fish and chips format. Other business people see that there are two fish and chip shops and reckon there must be great demand for fish and chips in the town and decide to start another fish and chip shop on the other side of town. Soon another small business person will look at the town and see three fish and chip shops and believe that with such incredibly strong demand for fish and chips that he or she should also open up a fish and chip outlet in the middle of the town.

A business expert mentioned that the pioneer of a concept, or new business idea, lasts only as long as it takes a competitor to figure it out. He said something important and that is that competitors will eat away at the edges so that your core must be strong. As a counter to competition, he said, management was important as was leadership, experience, and a clear understanding of purpose. These are important qualities in a business and the business owner to protect yourself against competition. The only way that you can protect your piece of the pie and prevent it from getting smaller with more competitors circling your business, is to differentiate and provide something that is better than your competitors.

A business person said that you need to have a “differentiating idea” which he said is the way you provide a service or product that should not be the same as your competitors. He believes that once you have that differentiating idea you need to provide excellent customer service, never letting customers down.

A business adviser worth his or her salt can show you specific ways to differentiate your business and still thrive despite competitors circling with their hungry jaws open wide. If you want to differentiate your small business idea, then put your name down for “Breakthrough Ideas”, which will provide you with an offensive and defensive strategy in the hyper-competitive niche markets.

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