I was a space kid. I grew up in the sixties when the race to space was always in the news. I still use something I heard about back then – the slingshot effect – as I work with companies and individuals today.
Wikipedia will tell you how the progress of a spacecraft can be influenced by making it pass a large celestial body. The Apollo missions used this to make a spacecraft accelerate very quickly towards the Moon by making it pass through the strong gravitational pull of the Earth.
You’ll be unsurprised to learn that I don’t use the ‘slingshot effect’, in its original sense, in business today. But I do keep it in mind.
When I talk to other companies and individuals, I try to work out how I can help them to achieve better progress. And I do that with people that appear to compete with me.
Why would I do that? Because all of the evidence that I have tells me that if I help someone to succeed, in some way they will try to help me. If I can help them, and get close to their business, the increased ‘gravitational pull’ will eventually lead to them helping my business to succeed.
This is an abstract connection I’m making, between grand adventures in space and the literally more down to earth things I’m involved in, but give this a moment’s thought. Could your business get a ‘slingshot effect’ by getting closer to another business?