Stick to your competitor or risk and move away?
A few years ago, a company from the same field (IT) moved to the same business building where our company is (small company, less than 30 people). We never looked at them as competitors as we both provide services, without having our own product.
However, in the past year, they've started an aggressive growth. They first rented all the free space in the building without having a need for it. Then started an aggressive pitching our people (instead of training their own). So far none of our people moved to them as our office culture seems to be attractive to our employees.
All of this made us realize that they see us as their direct competition and obviously want us to fail. In the past year, we haven't been able to grow in space due to the reason described above. This has started affecting our business plans.
Right now, we have a good opportunity to expand to a large office that could satisfy our growth plans for 5 years at the minimum. But the new office is away from this location (still in an attractive area).
Are we being foolish to be reluctant to move to a new office? Seems like the competitor managed to expel us. And another fear is that our people didn't move to a competitor because we are in the same building.
And emotionally, we like the location where we are at the moment.
Another option would be that we (being a richer company than our competitor) purchase part of this building and we expel the competitor. Financially this is not a good move as the current location is way overpriced (for example, for the same price we'd be able to get 2 times bigger office).
I'm being advised to stop carrying about these fears. But my internal guts tell me that it's not smart to move. That this could ruin us and that we'd lose our good employees.
What do you think? Am I being a coward or a smart man?
Figuring out how to react, if at all, to a competitor's move ranks among the most ... Here the firm risks cannibalizing its traditional business, but executives may find that
I feel you do need your own space. It’s like going for a trademark , if a business logo ect is to similar they will not approve it. Not saying your business is as similar , but in the same build is competition hands down. If you are on top , why move , if not try to compete or move. My opinion.
You can't grow your business by comparing yourself to the competitors! You said your business niche is an IT type, but then you describe the issues you are having because of a competitor moved to the same building where you are located. Is your IT business targeting locals? Does depend on local businesses to grow and expand or can you do it in other areas too? this is an important question for you to answer, as you can NOT just keep moving around every time a competitor move closer to you, you have to sit down and write a better business plan, a plan that can differentiate you from any competitor, whether they are next door or 500+ miles away.
You have to look at the values you are offering your customers, you have to look at what the best you can offer them.
I think you are looking at things that are not related to your IT business growth, this is based on the description you have listed above, I'm afraid that your solutions by moving away to another area or even worse, buying the building you are in and expelling them! This is the worse solution I have ever heard, again, are you in a real estate business or IT or? Why put yourself under so much financial strain and buy the whole building? for what? would this 100% bring you more business? how? and why? what prevent another competitor or even same one from buying or rent a place close to you?
You can't solve your issue by moving to another place or even worse: buying the whole building, you can't save your business by just concentrating on the current employees you have and live in fear of losing them to a competitor, you have to look inside the value you are offering your customers, this is where you can SHINE. You can always find good/ better employees (while it is better to keep the good ones), but finding customers that can STICK with you is very hard and that where you need to focus on.