People tend to assume that the road to success is necessarily a rocky one, and therefore needs to be walked in tiny, manageable steps. But if you truly want to succeed, baby steps aren’t the way to go. Instead, you need to think big and take quantum leaps.
A quantum leap is that bold move into an area that your competitors haven’t thought of yet. Instead of focusing on what’s difficult and what doesn’t go according to plan, look for paths that others haven’t spotted.
For example, a chemist at the 3M company was trying to develop a super-strong glue, but ended up with a very weak one instead. Everyone thought of it as a useless failure; that is until a fellow scientist found the perfect use for the product. He applied it to pieces of paper, in the process inventing the Post-it note – and we all know how that particular invention turned out.
The point is, to make breakthroughs you don’t necessarily need to invent something from scratch or even revolutionize marketing. All you need to do is find a novel approach, discover a great application for something that already exists or simply introduce an existing product to a new market.
Just consider the innumerable cappuccinos bought at Starbucks locations across North America this morning. The coffee chain didn’t invent this beverage; they just copied it from everyday European cafés and it became a huge success when introduced to US markets.
So, to find the breakthrough that will carry you soaring forward, you need to think boldly. And that means you should only consider your competitor’s approach as a reference point, so you know how to diverge from it. This way, you’ll discover opportunities that can make all the difference for your business.