It's a dog-eat-dog world -- but companies can opt out of the carnage by learning a few tricks, writes Erin Schwartz. Instead of taking on your competitors directly on all fronts, try specializing in a few niches, allowing you to differentiate yourself from your rivals and even to establish collaborative partnerships with them. "If your would-be competitors adopt the same approach, you can easily refer customers to one another," Schwartz writes.

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