As the second in my series of "When Firing Your Boss Isn't an Option" series, I have come up with a list of 27 ways to use your Toastmasters experience to its fullest. Joining or Attending Toastmasters is actually tip #2 on my 27 Free or Inexpensive Ways to Drive Your Career and Build Your Brand tip sheet (the first tipsheet in this series). Since I am a ‘mixologist’ at heart, and hate having efforts go to waste, I like to look for ways to make skills / efforts transferable and repurpose-able. The Toastmasters organization offers such tremendous opportunities, I thought ...
Your accomplishments, successes, triumphs, feats, coups, and even failures can be, and most often should be, collected in your Money Story repertoire. As speakers, and business owners successful on Social Media, we know the value and power of a story to foster a connection, grow credibility, and make a point. Stories help craft and represent a 4-D version of ourselves, and create charges for others to connect to us. As a species in general, stories helped create the connections and sense of identity throughout the ages, in every culture. (Obviously, the reverse can occur as well, but for now we are sticking ...
The Power of Behance is not only in the tool - it's in the freedom it creates and the control it provides. Behance and Linkedin is a partnership which broadens the borders. While caught up in my presentation delivery on the power of LinkedIn & other social media channels in driving the power of You3 (directing and controlling your brand), I delivered a major Faux Pas. I think about it now and it makes my stomach cringe. I didn’t even realize it in the moment, even though it didn’t sound right in my head. Behance. B-E-H-A-N-C-E. Not Beyonce. B-E-Y-O-N-C-E. Haha – what a ...
As speakers, and business owners successful on Social Media, we know the value and power of a story to foster a connection, grow credibility, and make a point.
Stories help craft and represent a 4-D version of ourselves, and create charges for others to connect to us. As a species in general, stories helped create the connections and sense of identity throughout the ages, in every culture. (Obviously, the reverse can occur as well, but for now we are sticking with the positive)
Much as been written about stories, how to craft, why to use, etc. Information overload is everywhere, and everyone is bombarded with so much information these days, we have all come up with our own complex system of internal filters, both primary and secondary, which can change day to day, project to project, relationship to relationship. These filters protect us from ‘useless’ information, or information that doesn’t match our needs. Understanding these filters, and by using stories, we can find ways to connect to people, and reach them with our message. Stories most often represent a non-threatening way to demonstrate, teach a lesson, highlight a point – basically creating ‘edutainment’ and creating a connection.
The power of stories are also effective for career folks and business people. I recommend to all my clients working a 9-5, or even working for themselves, that they create a Money Story repertoire for themselves. A portfolio, an inventory, a database, a folder of all of your accomplishments, feats, even failures which includes the highlights, lessons learned, key value added actions.
It’s as simple as keeping index cards at your desk, in your briefcase & / or notebook, and when something completes, or is a demonstration of something you’ve done well (you were in your zone), you grab a card and document: when, what, who, why, how. Also make sure to capture any other key pieces of information. Obviously, you can use a database (or whatever method works best for you, including my soon to be delivered app). All those successes or powerful lessons learned that can be referenced for presentations, interviews, performance reviews, speeches, etc.; your inventory of accomplishment stories with specific information which can enlighten someone else of the true value of doing business with you.
Keep up on this list, nurture it, edit it, use it – whenever you can. You will find what interests people, what works, what doesn’t. Also, and more importantly, you will find, when you have this repertoire to quickly reference in an interview setting, or pull up on your laptop for a client objection or question, you immediately establish your credibility and stand apart from the crowd. You are prepared & confident in your skills. The reality is though, this is the wave of the future, and if you don’t have these stories, you will lose your opportunities to someone who does.
What makes something a power story, a money story? Results. Documented, demonstrable results. Good or bad – believe it or not. A clear example of what it is about you that drove the success or turned something around. It can be something as clearly random as reading an article or listening to something on NPR about art appreciation that inspired you to think of your problem at work where no one has been able to reconcile. Or, it could be something as strategic and calculated as delivering the implementation of a $5 million system conversion with a team of 30.
Your money stories are everywhere, and everyone has them. I guarantee you when you start looking for them and becoming aware of your impact on things, you will begin to see them more, AND will be able to accomplish more in order to create more compelling and relevant stories. Having these stories convenient, easily accessible, and full documented will now turn your dreaded performance review into plethora of opportunity. It takes back the power of your actions and performance from your boss or supervisor, and provides you with more steering control.
I call these Money Stories because they help convince a doubting client, demonstrate your proficiency and value, get you a job or promotion, with more money, and demonstrate your credibility and expertise.
Look at your goals for the year, and at the very least, look for and record money stories related to those. But don’t stop there. Look everywhere. Run a successful fund raising event that brought in $10,000 for a non profit? There’s tons of money story detail and sub stories there! Start up a new Parent’s Association at your child’s school? Complete an ironman? Start a blog that went from zero to hero in less than a year? All of these can be used to create spectacular money stories, add depth and detail to resumes, provide content for social media platforms, or become fodder for a book. The possibilities are endless ……. Just like you know how to start looking for speech ideas everywhere, and connecting to all your different kinds of skills, the same applies to power stories.
Voila! You’ve got a portfolio! So the next time someone says “do you have an example of…”, or “I don’t know how that solution would work for me”, or….. you’re ready.
Next up – how to craft that power story into a white paper or position paper and use to obtain clients, a better job even when none are posted, and build your credibility and brand.
To your success! Now go Raevolutionize!
While caught up in my presentation delivery on the power of LinkedIn & other social media channels in driving the power of You3 (directing and controlling your brand), I delivered a major Faux Pas.
I think about it now and it makes my stomach cringe. I didn’t even realize it in the moment, even though it didn’t sound right in my head.
Behance. B-E-H-A-N-C-E. Not Beyonce. B-E-Y-O-N-C-E. Haha – what a goof. I am here to set the record straight.
First – the lesson of the day: Do not get so caught up in the passion of your topic, that you don’t stop to realize and correct a mistake.
Here’s the deets: An audience member asked about the LinkedIn application Behance. I knew about the app because I use it, and delivered the correct info about the app, but when another audience member asked about the spelling of it, well, stupidity kicked in.
I hereby apologize to my entire audience. To make it up, here’s the strength of Behance, why I like it, why I recommend its use, and finally, why you need to take control on your online brand.
I “connected” with Behance several years ago, because of their Action Method series of products and project management tools for creative (AWESOME!), as well as their Think Tank 99u (great reading and inspiration for making ideas happen). Their mission is to empower the creative world to make ideas happen, and give creatives control over their careers. Since then, I have been become a real fan. So when I saw they partnered with LinkedIn for a creative portfolio app, I immediately jumped on board (check out the portfolios of work there sometime – there are some really skilled people in this world).
First, I am a certified Project Manager, and am familiar with all the tools and techniques to run successful projects. Yet, something was always amiss for me. Deep down I am a creative, yet equally split with right brain and left brained skills. Based on well-meaning advice – I pursued the left brained world of Systems and IT. When I tried to apply left brain logic to my creative processes – I constantly ran up against my own resistance, and failure.
Enter Behance: “Don’t get in the way of your own success. It’s about creating work on your own terms. Unleashing your own potential. Don’t rely on chance encounters, don’t go unnoticed. Take creative control.”. See their Ode to Creative Work.
Behance offers a platform to showcase your creative portfolio, across different types of media. It allows you to showcase the projects you do. It allows you to connect with others, and allows you to be found for the visions you bring to life. It inspires.
Because LinkedIn is ‘business’ based, the partnership with Behance allows for a new level of professionalism and control for creatives. And others as well. I will show how to best use the Behance tools in future posts.
It’s time we all take control of our careers, our work, our future. No longer are we required to be pawns in a corporate game. We can work and play where and how we chose. We can showcase and highlight our work the way we want it. We can uncover leads and opportunities to further ourselves, and those for whom we wish to work.
We must become triple threats. If we see ourselves as the CEO of our careers or our professional solo-preneur / freelance businesses, we must leverage our speaking skills from the podium onto other mediums, other products, other platforms. This provides optimum control of our brand, our portfolio of work, and our opportunities.
All the world’s a stage, and all the world’s a project. And it all requires creativity. How will you use social media to become You3? If you are serious about the new world of work and creating opportunities for you, you are worth the investment.
Time to raevolutionize yourself, your career, and your business.
To your success,