THE DREAM BIGGER WARRIOR
I’m always the person who comes up from behind. I tend to take more time studying and can be pretty meticulous, but as the finish line approaches I sail ahead. Now, I embrace this trait- I know that it’s actually those “unseen hours” of preparation that are setting me up for success. So how can you take advantage of the “unseen hours” that go on behind the scenes?
THE CALM WARRIOR
It’s human nature to focus on what’s wrong. We’re often taught to achieve balance by strengthening our weaknesses. But what if we just need to be aware of our weaknesses and not necessarily spend time on them?
THE PHONE-A-FRIEND WARRIOR
So often, the words we use around marketing are overly aggressive. We say that we want to reach a “target audience,” we need to “penetrate” the market, or we need to “push” our product. But words have energy. To attract our ideal customers we have to first stop thinking of them as a target.
THE HELPFULNESS WARRIOR
One thing I truly believe creatives struggle with is feeling like a sleazy salesman. We want to focus on our craft and become hesitant about the business development side of what we do. Most of the time that means selling ourselves short, and not getting the respect we deserve for our hard work. Luckily, the solution isn’t too tough. You really need to just shift your mindset and realize that selling isn’t bad.
THE CONNECTION WARRIOR
Social media is a necessity for every business. What started out as a tool for personal expression is now an important way to gain brand recognition. As Facebook usership declines, Instagram is leading the charge- it’s recently hit one billion active monthly users. If you’re dragging your feet on taking your brand to Instagram, you’re missing out on some massive opportunities.
THE REMEMBRANCE WARRIOR
Many of us grew up thinking that if you work hard and you don’t give your boss any trouble, you’ll you have a nice future. There was a clear hierarchy, and you had to stay in your lane. But as the world is changing, the definition of leadership is changing, too. When we talk about leadership, no longer are we talking just about the heads of companies- anyone can be a leader.
THE CHIP WARRIOR
One of the biggest challenges creatives face is the onslaught of advice. So many of us are running around chasing our tails because there is so much information available. Best practices can feel like spokes on a wheel that are endlessly turning, and it can be difficult to break the cycle.
THE DISPASSIONATE WARRIOR
So many creative professionals get frustrated with the idea that they need to have a “niche.” We don’t like to feel like we’re being painted in a corner. It can feel paralyzing. We think to ourselves, “Why do I need to choose just one thing!” Most of us are driven by feeling fulfilled by the creative work that we do. We don’t want to sacrifice it for the sake of the business. So how can we find the direction that will make us successful in our work and then focus on it?
So often, we rush into giving advice to others. We don’t see the people around us as creative and whole so we don’t believe they have the tools or knowledge to achieve their goals. In an effort to help, we can actually stunt others’ growth. However, if we stay curious and ask the right questions, we can help the people around us realize they already have all the answers.
I’m as guilty as anyone for saying “good isn’t good enough.” Our society encourages people to be the best they can be; even capitalism is based on the idea that everything has to be exceptional. But perfectionism can stop us from even beginning. The acceptance that we are good enough now is critical to success in our work.
In LINGO, serial entrepreneur, business coach, and host of Creative Warriors podcast, Jeffrey Shaw reveals how to make your business irresistible to your ideal customers by speaking their Secret Language.