We learn very early in life to conform, to fit in, to copy.

Unfortunately this doesn’t usually lead to success in business. And it doesn’t make you a leader.

Instead, you have to figure out how you’re going to be different, to stick out and be memorable. But this takes courage.

And it’s not just the organizational “think outside the box” or “be on the leading edge” or “be customer focused” type of stuff. That’s all good, but it doesn’t make for sustainable relationships with customers.

You want to be “sticky” because customers love you and who you are.

This is what REALLY takes courage. Because you have to say “no” to the ordinary and comfortable so that you can say “yes” to your uniqueness.

It will make some employees comfortable.

It may be hard to find the right partners.

But if you’re going to have a different DNA than every other organization on the planet, it’ll be worth it. You can sleep at night, knowing that few others will want to be the kind of leader you are.

And the employees, partners and customers who align with you will follow you to the end of the earth!