Tired of the daily barrage of adverts that promise the moon on a stick, the fast track to freedom and share with you the precise strategies required to make millions almost effortlessly with their special insider secrets – I figured I would add to the noise with something maybe a touch more “real”.
It’s now been just over a decade since I first decided to make my living from my personal experience and the bumpy ride has served up an incredible journey. The best part of the journey so far is, without question, the lessons that it has served up, either from the moments or the amazing people along the way.
I am almost certainly biased, yet my belief is that the profession of speaking, training, coaching and writing is the very best job in the world. It is easy to understand why so many people would like to get involved…
From the outside in you can see the travel, the lifestyle, the influence, the recognition, the money and think to yourself – I want a piece of that.
The good stuff can be really good – it is just that what it takes to get there, stay there and sustain a business and a life in this world is far harder than it looks and requires ongoing and relentless effort in feeding 4 key areas.
Brilliance undercover is unlikely to shine. Like a diamond ring, in a box, in the safety deposit box at the bank – if your skills and talents remain hidden then the likelihood of being “discovered” is bordering on impossible. Even the musicians who where “discovered” on YouTube where brave enough to put the best of themselves in plain sight and rolled the dice of success to see what others had to say about their talents.
You believing in you is a great place to start, but until you allow others to see you, be aware of you and start perceiving you as you wish to be seen then you are significantly self sabotaging your success. This means looking the part, showing up in the right places and being caught providing value towards the problems that you solve. In the “expert” business it is highly unlikely that your clients are looking for you, or even somebody like you – you need to be seen as understanding their challenges better than they do themselves.
In fact – let me provide a new job description for expert business owners.
“Interrupt somebody’s day for long enough, to help them realize a problem they may have not yet seen themselves, introduce them a solution they did not know existed and have them choose you to help.”
You believing that you are good at what you do is not enough. You saying that you are awesome sounds egotistical, braggy and for many, feels really uncomfortable. Others sharing their positive opinion of your support and expertise is the praise worth working for.
Being in the “helping” business means that if you are to be trusted in helping others, then buyers want to know that you have a proven track record in helping others. Previous people and companies you have helped, concrete results of your successes and reassurance from third parties that you are what you claim to be is an essential requirement.
This provides a giant catch – you cannot get these things without experience. Experience itself is certainly not measured in “time” but instead is measured in the number of “times” you have done something. Would you like a surgeon who has been practicing for 10 years (and conducted your surgery 12 times) or perhaps someone with only 3 years experience that has successfully completed the procedure on 542 occasions?
If you are lacking in credibility then it is collected in experience and documented with results. By getting busy and serving the problems that you solve, contributing to the communities that you serve and being caught delivering true and honest value, then your reputation will grow and your career will soon follow.
Many people like the idea of being seen as the expert they claim to be, yet fewer actually take responsibility for that role. Through my lens, the deal is simple, if you truly care about the areas that you claim to care about then you must care about all situations in which your expertise is required. This means that not every opportunity is a business opportunity, not everyone needs to be sold to yet when opportunities arise that you can genuinely add value to, then you take the responsibility to add that value. You show up for work every day and you know for certain that your success has zero to do with you and 100% to do with the people that you help.
When friends have challenges then you step up, when the community needs your support then you step up and when potential clients have challenges you lean in with curiosity, seeking to understand their challenges further and if you can value then you exchange that value for less than the money it is worth to them to fix that challenge.
You do not have a shop front with opening hours so you need to replicate that level of convenience and help others know how they can access you. Having transparency of your process, your pricing and exactly how buyers can engage and do business with you frees up a huge amount of momentum. In a fast paced world if buyers cannot quickly and conveniently engage with you then that moment may just pass you buy.
I am not saying to lay everything on the table and hold nothing back – I am saying to map your steps and be ready to guide people through your experience one step at a time.
On each of these 4 steps I could write pages and pages. I didn’t write this as a “how to” post, more as a post to empty something from my head and start you thinking about you and your world – knowing that visibility, followed by credibility, enhanced with authenticity and coupled with availability are the 4 simple steps to master in order to succeed in an expert based business.
So maybe ask yourself…..
- What can I do to grow my visibility to more of the right people?
- How can I collect more credibility to help reassure those people of my ability?
- Where do I need to keep contributing to nurture my authenticity?
- How easy am I to transact with and can people engage me easily?
And if I have prompted you to take action on something different or extra from this short read then that to me is great news.
Knowledge does not lead to power – acting on that knowledge does!