Specialize or Generalize?

I was reading a great post by Rohit Bharagava last week on The $1 Million Specialization Question.

If you’re an solopreneur, consultant,or small business, here’s my advice. Specialize. Then sub-specialize.

You cannot stand out, or be memorable as a business, if you employ Bullet-point Branding. “We do this, and this, and this, and this. Oh, and if it means cash flow for the next 3 months, we’ll do that too.”

Your goal should be to create the sense that you are the Go-To person or company for something very specific. Some niche you can define and dominate. Find your unique value and wave that flag.

You don’t merely need business. You need an identity first. Then you can pursue the right business for you.

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About Steve Woodruff
Steve Woodruff is a blogger, a Connection Agent, and a consultant in the pharma/healthcare industry. He specializes in helping people and companies make mutually beneficial connections.

7 Responses to Specialize or Generalize?

  1. Matthew Kann says:

    Steve,

    I couldn’t agree more. Thanks for the post!

  2. Adam says:

    Steve I have experienced many “experts” at networking or social events who can do everything. I have even heard someone say when I asked then what they do “Anything”. You can guess how eager I was to do business with them especially considering there was no mention of one thing they actually do.

    Specializing gives more credibility and encourages belief. Even companies that master certain areas of the business world and expand into new ventures can often shoot themselves in the foot by getting away from their strengths and/or spreading themselves too thin too quickly.

  3. arjkay says:

    Steve,
    Couldn’t agree more, especially as I have been on the fear side for too long and it interfered with my ability to focus. Anxious to do and prove ourselves useful, makes us try to be more things to more people. We believe that being a generalist will allow us to capitalize on more opportunities–the more the more. But we have to remember that less is more, though specialization means commitment and can be risky, it also makes it far easier for people to find you and refer you for far more suitable tasks/roles where you will excel. Doing what we are good at and being able to do it more makes us do it better every time and become the expert that everyone wants to hire.
    Of course, there are always people who want to hire cheap and look for the general handyman, but for those who appreciate the difference a specialist contributes, that’s the market that keeps on giving.

    I’m not yet feeling the force of being in that sweet spot of the curve where business is accelerating; but your posts are certainly wonderful reminders to keep me on course. So keep them coming!!

  4. Sue says:

    Hi Steve,

    This is reminds me of a conversation we had about a year ago….I agree.

  5. Pingback: Does your personal brand define your company's brand?

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