“Please mind the gap”. It’s a phrase that is announced over and over again on the London Underground.
When I was a child I would avoid “the gap” at all costs. It was a terrifying idea; falling into “the gap” would surely result in immediate death…or worse…having to come face to face with some kind of “gap monster”.
Why then as we get older, do we start to embrace “gaps”? People seem to love “gaps in the market”, they love an “opening”, they embrace “integration” with legacy software.
Perhaps we should have the same attitude towards these sorts of “gaps” as we do towards the “gaps” on the London Underground.
If you fill a gap in the market, if you are always looking for an opening or trying to partner up with someone then you are giving up your chance to lead, to create and to make something truly new and remarkable.
The gaps in the market were left there by the companies that created the market. You have the opportunity to create your own market.
(No, not as hard as you think.)
If you build guitars for example then you could be the only person to create a unique body shape, with a certain type of wood in a certain type of way.
If you are a chef, you have the opportunity to cook with the ingredients exclusive to your region with the recipes that have been handed down for generations.
If you provide a service you can provide your service in the unique way you would like your problem to be solved. If you like it solved this way, then it’s incredibly likely that a lot of others will as well.
It’s all too easy to fall into the gap.
So “Mind the gap”, because your life might just depend on it.