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I’m a nicheaholic.  I live and breathe niches and think you should also.  If you’re feeling that you don’t have enough time to do what you need to do then think about developing and using a niche.

If you develop a niche for yourself, I can promise you one thing: You’ll gain a few hours a day.  The reason behind this is not a big secret.  When you only work within a niche you become an expert at what you’re doing.  Experts do things much more quickly than those who are just learning.  When you develop a niche you’ll be finding yourself some free time.

The problem with developing a niche is the time it takes to become an expert.

If you decide to become a nicheaholic you are likely to see little extra time for a period of years.  Yes, you’ll be able to tell your customers what it is you do in a very specific way.  You’ll be able to communicate what’s different about your company.  You might even be able to charge a little more for your services. 

What you won’t get is the advantage of an expert, at least not at first.  This is where you might have a challenge.  Becoming an expert is hard work.  You have to answer the following question, “Is developing a niche going to be worth the time and effort I’ll need to spend?”

My own answer is a resounding yes.  I’ve developed a niche.  I’ve spent years and years of time learning about my niche.  Now I get to reap the benefits.  When someone calls me and asks a question about creating value in a middle market private business it’s not hard for me to give a really good answer.

Do you have the ability to delay gratification.

Identifying my expertise was an interesting experience.  One day I woke up and realized that there was little that was going to throw me when having a value creating conversation with a business owner.  Want to sell your business?  I can help with that.  How about putting a lean installation in your company?  Yup, had experience with that.  How about setting up a marketing program and identifying your best customers?  Yes that too.

It’s all about being willing to move a little outside your comfort zone.  If you’re willing to do so, you can start to ask a different question.  How is it that I can add value to those I work with?  The more you know and the more you develop the habit of curiosity, the easier it is for you to move to a point where your niche is your playground.

When you develop expertise you get to concentrate on the little things that add incredible value.

Today when I work with a customer it’s easy for me to help them think in a creative manner.  I don’t have to think about the basics.  It’s how you can combine various strategies from different parts of your niche that allows you to add value in an unusual way.  Until you really understand the basics, you’re going to have to work hard to come up with good solutions.

When you’ve done it over and over you can then start to easily work outside of accepted norms.  You know what the “company line” is and you can ask if the line makes sense.  If it doesn’t you have enough basic knowledge to help design the product people really need or come up with a solution that is just different enough that your value is more than justified in what you charge.

I believe this is the reason that many business owners really start to hit their stride around the time they turn fifty years old.  You’ve had twenty-five or thirty years of experience.  You have come across just about anything you’re going to see.  You know what works and what doesn’t.  Now you get to reap the benefits from all the mistakes you’ve made.  Just look at where your expertise lies, say yes to that and no to everything else.  If you do, you’ll create more free time than you can imagine.

Part of creating free time is learning to be operationally irrelevant in your business.  We’ve written a case study that helps you understand what it takes to become a passive owner.  To get this case study, click on the button below.

Securities and Investment Advisory Services offered through NFP Securities, Inc. (NFPSI), Member FINRA/SIPC. Stage 2 Planning Partners and NFPSI are not affiliated.

This article is published for residents of the United States only.  Registered Representatives and Investment Adviser Representatives of NFP Securities, Inc. may only conduct business with residents of the states and jurisdictions in which they are properly registered.  Therefore, a response to a request for information may be delayed.  Not all of the products and services referenced on this site are available in every state and through every representative or advisor listed.

Topics: business coaching, value creation, niche

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