“Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own.”
A periodic glimpse into the past, without getting stuck in it, is healthy. What’s more, it’s necessary if you want to move this business of life forward.
So what’s got me looking at the past today? I had to update my testimonials to reflect the current state of business at WpG.
I had to clear out any work I’d done that no longer reflects what I do today in my business (Yep, good bye to writing keyword-rich LinkedIn profiles for people wishing to squeeze themselves into cubicles. They are not my people anymore).
I also had to add some updates to give an idea of what projects excite me these days and what I’d like to help with as I keep experimenting in my lab, which is what WritePublishGrow is. So far I haven’t been successful in coming up with the formula for long-term, growth-focussed client-relationships, yet it’s so much fun trying day in and day out. All of these trials reveal who I am and what I’m made of.
The best part of looking backwards to see where I came from, what projects I used to do and where I failed, was identifying the reason why I failed and picking out the gold nuggets, THE LEARNINGS to become wiser and more valuable going forward.
Believe it or not, once upon a time, I had a job, actually I had several jobs. I was never good at keeping jobs for very long. I can blame the state of the media and the marketing industry as it goes through a huge correction or the fact that I got restless and impatient with management not adapting quickly enough to the changes around us, but I won’t.
I blame myself, not as in beating myself up about it but for not taking the time to properly plan, research and execute a career path.
I just took whatever was given and have been carrying this pattern to WpG, taking on whatever clients I can.
I can’t really blame myself too much for taking less than plum jobs, because there was an element of desperation as I needed a 457 visa.
I’m not sure why this is but desperation only seems to attract more desperation. I fell into jobs within companies which were struggling to sell print media (we are in the digital age) and their marketing services (as there are so many options out there). They were a reflection of the fact that I hadn’t planned or done an personal inventory to really understand what value I offered within a crowded marketplace.
Once I landed in these cubicles however, I could see clearly what needed to be done for these companies to turn themselves around. I could see where their people were failing, where management was failing and why their reputation was on a downward trajectory.
Alas, I was never hired to be the CEO. One of my managers actually once said to me “I don’t know how to contain you and I’m not sure if I should contain you”.
Well it didn’t work out. I just kept busting out of those tight cubicles.
That I’m an enthusiastic person.
I was actually fired a couple times, by two different companies for “being too enthusiastic”. Now, an enthusiastic employee is a threat to a manager or a CEO who doesn’t have a vision or the drive or the passion for their own business to keep moving things forward.
They probably feel threatened.
“Oh God, I hired someone who has more passion for my business than I do, she might steal my job/business from me!”
Or maybe they think to themselves “I’ve got a crazy person who actually thinks this stinking job/company is a good one. What’s wrong with her? Can’t have crazies running around. This isn’t a loony bin!”
I also learned that I was carrying some of the desperation to WpG, instead of taking my time and planning it properly, but again, you gotta hit the market and see what you can find and refine your offerings accordingly.
Looking back at the testimonials, I can see I made an impact in all these workplaces where I failed. My colleagues valued having me (albeit shortly) on their side and provided lovely words speaking to my positivity and enthusiasm.
These words refueled me to keep driving WpG to go where I know it can.
Another lesson to take is to not worry about the people who don’t see your value, as managers did not tend to, focus on those who do and be grateful for the learnings. I can 100% say that I have no ill feelings towards anyone who’s made the decision to fire me. They had their reasons and it gave me the opportunity to start my own business.
My Building Blocks (Not Creative Blocks)
So like the Lego Man, the mythical figure I discuss with a wise, retired fellow entrepreneur Daryl, I see that I gathered many Lego blocks from these jobs in the media and marketing industry. I got my appreciation for structure and understanding of the sales discipline, the importance of showing up day in and day out despite no customers showing up, and most of all, I gained a better understanding of my virtues: enthusiasm and positivity.
You too may have had failues in your business or career. Don’t let these become creative blocks, where out of fear you refuse your creative flow and stop playing and exploring the world around you. Use them as blocks to build up WHO YOU ARE.
Comment below with some of the failures you experienced and how these setbacks moved you forward in a path that’s true to who you are.
I can’t wait to hear from you. Also, don’t forget to BOOK A FREE 5-MINUTE CONSULT with me to help improve your website, newsletter, social media copy so that you gain the attention of the right people, those who will re-energise you and your business.
PS: The image I used is Voltron, a favourite of mine from my childhood days. The beauty of it was five pilots of metallic lions had to come together to form the super robot Voltron which is more powerful than all five lions working individually. So like the five lions, all the jobs (there were way more than five though!) I had in my past have come together to build WpG you see today. It is the Lego Man, the ultimate cherry picking of everything I found functional in my days as an employee.