Jamaican Businesses urged to be Different

Jamaican business owners, rather than trying to outdo each other, should instead, strive to be different.

This is the advice from successful American entrepreneur, Mike Michalowicz, as he addressed Friday’s (May 3) opening session of the Jamaica Employers’ Federation (JEF) annual convention being held at the Sunset Jamaica Grande Hotel in Ocho Rios. According to Mr. Michalowicz, being different is what makes a business memorable to clients and sets it apart from the competition. “If you want your business to grow, stop trying to be better than the competition, just be different,” he stated.

Mr. Michalowicz, who is behind three multi-million dollar companies and is author of the bestseller ‘The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur’, outlined several strategies that businesses can employ, including in the areas of marketing and service delivery, to “break out of labels” and be different.

These include remembering customers by name and giving them gifts; always outlining the benefits of  products to  customers;  always trying to outdo industry expectations; and not to overpromise and under deliver, but always strive to under promise and over deliver.

Mr. Michalowicz acknowledged that it takes some amount of courage to be different as humans are always ready to imitate the behaviour of others. He noted, however, that once a business operator decides to be unique, he will attract customers and grow his operation.

“There are expectations for every industry…the first person that breaks the expectation, the first one that does not try to be better, but instead, tries to be different, wins,” he said.

Meanwhile, with over 300 delegates attending the May 3 to 6 convention, President of the JEF, Wayne Chen, said the event is the largest of its kind in the English-speaking Caribbean.

The four-day event, he said, “brings together hundreds of participants to hear, meet, and share with the best minds locally and internationally, to enhance individual, team and organisational performance”.


By Bryan Miller, JIS Reporter

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