Anatomy of an Entrepreneur - Part 4
We all want to know the magic formula for entrepreneurial success and Gallup thinks they've found it. They've distilled the 10 talents that, when combined, produce a rare business swagger that attracts investors, clients and begrudging nods of approval from the competition.
Let's stick 2 more ingredients in the mix.
This is the slightly manic, obsessive version of the often heralded life-long learner. As a self-described knowledge junkie (it's in my Twitter bio) I'm happiest sponging up new info. Whether it's related to my business or a client's or I carve out time to actually crack open a real book with pages (sigh of delight) I love exploring the limits of my brain's capacity to absorb and retain information.
Knowledge seekers gather knowledge like magpies gather shiny objects, each new pearl of wisdom filed away for future use. This makes them perfectly poised to see opportunities other miss. They can apply this extra info in innovative ways that disrupt their industries and surprise the market. Keeping them one creative synaptic leap ahead of the competition.
These folks are better at recognizing trends in consumer behaviour and can manage risk effectively. They're always looking for an edge, a unique spin or offering a different perspective.
Just be careful you're not jumping from one shiny new idea to the next too quickly. Have an objective someone who gets your biz that you can bounce your new ideas off of first. Before you elope with your latest, fevered moment of inspired synaptic glory. Sometimes, even just having someone ask you questions about it can help you think through all the pieces you may have overlooked in your moment of blissful epiphany.
The Promoter talent is really broken into 2 different skills: networking and storytelling. It's weird to me that they chose to lump them together because one I definitely need to get better at...the other is what I do best. Go figure.
The networking promoter: knows how to identify and invest in beneficial relationships for their business. They're the natural spokesperson and enthusiastically and authentically endorse their business with every opportunity. In other words, they talk passionately about their biz to everyone and manage not be annoying about it.
They can also surround themselves with trusted advisers who'll help them assess situations and scenarios objectively. Because let's face it, sometimes we're SO invested and passionate about the thing we've created we tend to have blinders on.
The storytelling promoter: Listen, everywhere you go on this site I talk about the importance of storytelling. So I won't rehash everything here. It boils down to being a good listener, understanding what your client needs and wants. Meeting them in their life. Authentically sharing your voice and personality so they can see who you are and being honest about how exactly you can help.
Good promoters do this and people are drawn to businesses that can be open, honest and real. And if you can give them a great experience too? They'll keep coming back. Because we all avoid the faceless corporations whenever possible.
And of course, promotion in 2015 is no simple task. You have to decide which social media platforms are best for your business based on where your target market is hanging out. Then you need to build a social media strategy for each one. And back it up with quality content for them to engage with on your website. All in an effort to promote the stuff you've created.
But of course in order not to seem like an obnoxious ass you can really only promote your own stuff about 20% of the time. And only a fraction of these followers or interactions may ever actually become leads. Anyone else feel like things just got super complicated?
But this is the way we do business on the web. And opting out of social media would be...unthinkable for an online business. Even for a bricks and mortar business, not doing social media is like leaving money out on the sidewalk. You need to master the art of promoting your business online and offline. Or you might as well hang the open sign, sit quietly inside and never tell a single soul about this amazing thing you've created. What customers you get will be purely by accident. And whether or not your business survives...also pretty much by accident.
Well, we've almost completely dissected the inner workings of successful entrepreneurs. Only 2 more talents to go. Next week relationship building and risk-taking round out the top 10 talents necessary to be a successful entrepreneur.