“When you play the game of thrones you win or you die. There
is no middle ground.”
Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones
Something similar is true in business, you either earn a
profit or your business will eventually die. There is no middle ground.
The difference is that there can be multiple profitable businesses
in the same market.
And if your business dies, you don’t need to perish with it. In fact, you can try again.
Any business that becomes sustainably profitable generates
happy owners and the motive to build and run businesses in the first place. Business
creates products, services and jobs. The flow of money stimulates more business.
And while many businesses leaders dream of conquering an
entire market, the natural state is generally for there to be healthy
competition. It is good for the customers and it keeps businesses innovating.
The dream state where you can raise prices and keep your
customers through your monopoly generally leads to new competition or
innovative displacement. Someone will dethrone you.
Even if your goal is to grow a business and sell it, you
are not immune from seeking a profit. Your product becomes your business. Your buyer
is the customer. The buyer must perceive they can profit from purchasing the
business. All while you keep the people using your product or service happy.
A profitable business is generally easier to sell.
Again, entrepreneurs playing the game of business need to win often enough and big enough to make the risk, stress and work worth it.
Profit is essential to winning the Game of Business. There
is no middle ground.