It’s always been the case. Since Cain and Abel there has always been someone around to remind you of your weaknesses; what you suck at. It’s still the case in the 21st century. Talk radio, cable news, sports talk, social media….. let’s talk about what/who is awful. Negativity, badmouthing….. it’s everywhere. How are you supposed to see the glass as half full? Answer? Easy. Focus on your strengths.
Jack of all trades; master of none. Is that you? Is that the reflection of your business? I think not. We spend WAY too much time and energy, however, working on upgrading our weaknesses. We spend WAY too much time focusing on/worrying about those things that could use improvement. Last time I checked there were only 24 hours in the day, 7 days in the week, and so on. Only a limited amount of time to become well-rounded/mediocre. That means that if I am spending all this time trying to be better at something that 1) I am inherently not good at 2) I dislike immensely, 3) does nothing to enhance my business or my self, and 4) takes time away from the things I SHOULD be doing; I am wasting massive time.
There are, by the way, weaknesses that can and maybe should be improved. You can become fitter, healthier, a better driver (please get everyone to work on that one), a better listener. But I DO NOT need to become a better alphabetizer of files or copywriter, for instance. Monster, the job site, says that three of the most confessed weaknesses on job interviews are:
1. “I’m too critical of myself,”
2. “I try to please everyone,”
3. “I’m not familiar with the latest version of ______.”
By the way, let’s handle those in case you have a job interview coming up:
1. Focus on your strengths and you will no longer have this issue.
2. Can’t be done. Forget it (Abe Lincoln said so)
3. Who cares?
So, let’s get right down to it. Start with self-awareness. What are you great at? Where is your expertise? It’s difficult to focus on that which you cannot identify. Then focus on those strengths. When you focus on your strengths, you automatically are focused on the best part of you. When that happens you not only feel better about yourself, you also become someone others will be drawn to for whatever it is that draws them (whether it’s an expertise, a trait, a characteristic). In life AND in business, THAT is a powerful thing.
While the self-awareness is good, how effective are your strengths if only you know about them? In business, especially, your strengths can and should attract business. In fact, they should totally do that. What greater marketing/branding topic than the benefits of working with you because you’re the master _______? (fill in your strength).
So let’s try something. Let’s see if we can, first, identify our strengths. Then, let’s get practical and see some ways to get the word out. The chart and commentary below will guide you through the process.
On the first row, you would identify three strengths. What are you good at? Where is your expertise?
In row 2, the key word is HOW. So let’s jot down some ideas reflecting how your strength might help someone you serve. In the case of a real estate agent, how would your strength help a buyer and/or seller?
In the WHY row, write the benefit of this skill/strength. Why does someone care that you have it? What’s in it for them?
Finally, in the final row, what can you do to get the word out about your strength? How could it be marketed? What can you do to attract people to it?
A quick example:
(WHAT). If I have market expertise as a strength, (HOW) it can help buyers and/or sellers in the following ways: Sellers can better price their houses, buyers can write better offers, and both can compete more effectively and simple better understand the market. (WHY) What’s in it for them is being better informed and better able to compete ORRRRR maybe they just have more confidence in both me and the process. (WHAT) Finally, I can write about the market in a newsletter or a blog, I could do a weekly video post on YouTube. I could change the way I answer the question, “How’s the market?” by actually chatting about the market. I could utilize testimonials regarding my expertise and how it helped my clients. Get the idea?
When finished, you have your plan. Find ways to execute the “what can you do” part into your business plan for 2019 and go rock it! Deploy hard work against your strengths, you will always win.
Your thoughts? Leave a comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.