What is Your Unfair Advantage?

Savvy Saturdays (1/23/21)

In startups, there is a term called “Unfair Advantage”, which is one of the most important things a founder in a company needs to understand in order to beat out their competition.

An “Unfair Advantage” is anything that cannot be easily copied or bought by other stakeholders. This can be technical knowledge, unique skills, connections, patents, or a large sum donation from a distant uncle.

Many companies have used their unfair advantage to become the top of their area:

  • Google outperformed Bing & Yahoo in speed 5-10xs faster than their competitors.

  • Coke beat Pepsi by emphasizing brand over product by selling itself to consumers as an experience and lifestyle.

  • Nike outrose Adidas through early unique designs of shoes that improved athlete’s performance as well as empowering story branding. (ya know, Just Do It)

The amazing thing is if a company utilizes their unfair advantage strategically, not only can they differentiate themselves from the competition, but they can add to their stash of unfair advantages, becoming an unstoppable force in their field (until the government decides to anti-trust you 👀 ).

In the same way, we can pinpoint our own “unfair advantages” to see how we can uniquely provide value to others, and potentially discover areas we can do meaningful work.

Recently I was in a call with a community of entrepreneurs, and a man was sharing his struggles on helping others, and not understanding how he could sell himself.

He mentioned how he was good at soft skills, and as a product manager, he had an impact within his company, but when it came to taking his skills outside of corporate for his side hustle, he felt that there was no unique proposition that he could provide to his audience.

He had the drive to help, but there was no specific selling point.

One of the entrepreneurs listening in the call started to ask him questions to understand his story. Through some dialogue, we learned the man’s passions and realized that the man’s unfair advantage involved intersecting his empathy as a manager, his unique curiosity and learning drive as an entrepreneur, and his passion for sports to potentially create a podcast or courses to help athletes go from doing sports to running a business.

In that time, I learned that everyone has an unfair advantage in something.

By taking stock of not only your skills & resources but also experiences, passions, and insights, you can discover your uniqueness and amplify your value to others.

Maybe you’ll discover that you have so much more to offer than you knew.

When you know your unfair advantages, you’ll know how to better sell yourself and can use that leverage to your advantage to help yourself, others, and the world.

So how will you uniquely provide value to the world?

What’s your unfair advantage?

Questions to ponder: 🤔

  • List out your skills, resources, experiences, passions, etc…

  • How can you intersect these properties to discover an unfair advantage about yourself, compared to others? (individually, job candidates, startup, work)

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Weekly Collections

A collection of resources for you to enjoy… 📰 🎬 🎙️

Faith

There are two ways that God’s children could conceivably fail in the Christian life. One is for us to turn away from God. And the other is for God to turn away from us.

Jeremiah, amazingly, says that in the days to come — the days of the new covenant — neither of these will happen:

I will make with them an everlasting covenant, that I will not turn away from doing good to them. And I will put the fear of me in their hearts, that they may not turn from me. (Jeremiah 32:40)

If you woke up a Christian this morning, this is how you should feel. Glory, majesty, dominion, and authority have been at work for you while you slept. Your being kept for a joyful meeting with God has been promised. God is faithful. He will do it.

Will You Wake Up a Christian Tomorrow? | DesiringGod


Missions: Faith & Tech Intersection

A couple of friends I know wrote up an article on a Christian hackathon I got the pleasure to attend last Fall.

It’s cool because out of the hackathon, they created a missional initiative, a SERVE Cohort, which is an internship experience for young adults to intersect faith and technology and advance the Great Commission.

One of the first projects they’re tackling is a campaign for Joshua Project’s frontier people groups.

If you’re interested in this internship opportunity, know someone who would love this opportunity, or want to learn more on how to intersect faith and work, feel free to join this Slack community or reach out to the bros via email (phoenixw@utexas.edu)!

Mission Hacking After the Hackathon


Productivity (& Anime)

Saw this video that transformed the Pomodoro technique in order to be more effective not only in focused work but also in watching anime! (you can replace anime with any other non-weeb proverbial thing)

Animedoro


Weekly Tidbits

Learnings, verses, & quotes to chew on… 🧐

The Hill We Climb

—by Amanda Gorman from Biden’s Inauguration

Verse of the Week

“And I heard the voice of the Lord saying,

‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?"‘

Then I said, ‘Here I am! Send me.’”

Isaiah 6:8

Challenging Quote

Some men see things as they are and ask, “Why?”

I dream things that never were and ask, “Why not?”

Robert F. Kennedy


Weekly Update

Personal life stuff… 🔔

Hello friends,

Greetings from Austin! 👋

It feels great to be back in ATX.

It was good to have quality time with family back at home, but with ministry picking up, it’s important to be back in the fray of things and focus.

School has started for the college kiddos, which means lots is going on in the next couple of weeks.

In fact, our church is preparing for the One Desire Fast.

I’m both nervous and excited for these next few weeks, as fasting is never easy. But with the mindset of giving up good for great, I am excited for the potential of realigning my heart with God, as I feel I’ve gotten far from Him.😪

Through some reflections (and counseling sessions), I learned I have gotten too immersed in the practical world, and unlearned parts of my faith (trust, dependence, etc… 😳).

Unable to draw a connection between my career and my belief in God, I started slowly to take steps away from God. I felt that all I did seemed to point towards executed results by myself. (essentially self-sufficiency 🤦)

I’m hoping during this fast that I will be able to repent and be restored back in Christ. To not only submit myself to Him, but also relearn a heart of thankfulness and be reminded that ultimately everything I have comes from Him.

We’ll see what happens.🙏

Anyways, here are several pictures from this past week: 📷

With that, stay safe 😷 , keep it savvy 🧠🫀🫁, and I’ll see y’all in the next update 😊

Eric


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Want to write a guest post? Have a cool article, resource, verse, or quote to share? Email me @ eric-lee [at] utexas [dot] edu.