I was at a seminar today and during a sharing session, we were making introductions in groups on what we do for a living and our message to our audience. There was this lady beside me, whose message was funny, ambiguous and led us all to “think” in an erm… obscene manner, which in a humorous light, brought laughter to the table. Hence we made some comments to restructure the Grammar so it would sound more precise. She was then quick to point out that she is a “Professional English Writer”. However, in the whole one hour of the entire session, I do not recall her saying a single line of English that is proper and unbroken. Being absolutely Singaporean, there is certainly no issues with communicating in Singlish, but in a business context, I can’t help but wonder if I would ever engage her to write for me.
Now, not that I deny her capabilities or professionalism. But there is a definite cloud of uncertainty in her credibility due to her lack of skills to communicate effectively in the language she claims she excels in.
Another lady came by and she says she helps fresh graduates with identifying their strengths and weakness, tackling it and fitting them into ideal jobs. However, she was extremely soft-spoken, somewhat lacking in confidence and have problems explaining what she does without further prompting. I wonder again, if she’s the one who needs help instead.
I commonly observe gaps with online persona and the actual person in-question. Many acquired skills to package and sell themselves on the internet front. However, they lack the skill sets, personality or comfort to express the same in person. And that gap in persona also translates to a gap in credibility for clients.
To get from you are to where you want to be,
you must play the role you want to be.
In NLP (Neuro-linguistic Programming), you learn that successful people (or wannabes) think like other successful people, such as CEOs. You don’t only think like a CEO when you become one, but you need to behave and start to think in the same line of thought if you aspire to become one. In the same context, in whichever line or role you claim to be an expert; it is inadequate just to be better than those unknown.
- You have to play the part you claim to be and convince it with your personality.
- You must be clear in your point of view and be confident in expressing it.
- If you lack the above, identify the skills that your predecessors possess which you don’t, and find solutions to the gaps, consciously practice it until it becomes a habit.
- Be clear who you are talking to, and be sure your communication skills are able to effectively connect with those people. If not, repeat 3 till it’s mastered.
- You need not be perfect (none of us are), but identify your inadequacy and make the effort to close those gaps. Practice with the people you want to connect with, and you will build enough confidence to carry yourself further.
We are all consumers first, marketers second. THINK, would you “buy yourself”? If not, someone else probably wouldn’t too. It is cool to learn how to market and brand and package but in the end, the personal brand (YOU) needs to speak for itself. So start looking into the mirror today and try to see if you can be convinced to buy YOU.