9 Minimizing the obstacles

9.5. Involve the opponents

The best way to build momentum for the ABC initiative is to get your competitors involved in the work.

The market will react in a positive way, when it sees competitors working toward a common goal that is good for the industry. It is the “wow” these people can work together that will yield new and unexpected shifts from a negative to a positive, full-fledged commitment.

You may by surprised how things can go. Some would like to join the group just because they are curious, some of them – especially market leaders – do not want to miss anything new happening in their market, and some will come on board just because someone else is already there. Remember that early innovators are highly influential. Get a testimonial statement to use in your talking points whenever possible.

Keep a very open mind to these things! Be ready to invite into the ABC group those people who most view as beyond approach.

The worse thing that can happen to you is to talk to a very irritating person, who you totally dislike (this may be mutual). If you agree by now that an ABC is all about cooperation and openness, it is about time you prove it to yourself, as well as to others: sit down and talk to that person!

Do not forget that in the long run, you want to have a wide array of market players joining the ABC. Many competitors will be part of it. Commence with the objective of diverse membership immediately? Don’t wait!

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