On recommendation from the talented Cynthia D’Amour, I recently picked up and read Growing Your Business! by Mark LeBlanc. It’s a whole $7.95 and has fewer than 80 pages. And yet, it packs a remarkable punch. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in building their career through enhanced focus, productivity and proactivity. Following is my favorite concept from the book:
A defining statement
According to LeBlanc, “The easiest way to position yourself by concept [as opposed to by title or by products/services] is to create a great defining statement. A defining statement is a simple answer to a simple question, ‘What do you do?’”
He goes on to ask, “How many times do you answer this question differently? Do your customers or even your family and friends really understand what you do? What if everyone knew? What if your employees [or colleagues, allies, friends and family] could repeat your defining statement?”
In theory, “When you can answer this simple question in a succinct and concise way that attracts more prospects, [LeBlanc believes] you will have reached a deeper level of connection with your prospects and customers.”
Although LeBlanc is writing to business owners and professionals who want to sell more products and services, I think the concept is equally applicable to association professionals and industry partners of all experience levels regardless of position.
Only when we truly understand the goals and objectives of our work, can articulate the benefits and limitations of our own personal gifts and talents, and can easily and clearly communicate this “What do you do?” vision with both current and prospective members/clients, does the ambiguity and frustration begin to subside. The resulting void is then filled with confidence, joy and passion. Identifying and nurturing that sweet spot is sure to make us more productive employees and much more pleasant in our personal lives, too.
So, my question to you is this: What’s your defining statement? How do you know? How do you share this defining statement with others? How has your defining statement changed your life? How do you resolve conflicts between your defining statement and your organization’s defining statement?