“You’re so money and you don’t even know it.”
This is one of my favorite lines from the 1996 film, “Swingers”, starring Vince Vaughn. Now granted the film is about Trent (Vince Vaughn) teaching Mike (Jon Favreau) how to pick up women, the line still applies to life and work. We don’t give ourselves enough credit and sabotage our efforts before we even begin. Just recently I had the opportunity to choose between being a confident entrepreneur and resting in my own self-sabotage.
Last week one of my writers convinced me to go to a star studded event to commemorate the NFL draft. Not only did we want to go and have a good time, but we thought it would be a good networking opportunity for the business. My initial thought was “Great!”, then shortly turned into “Oh my God!” Every insecurity bubbled to the surface and I had every excuse not to go. “I’m not ready….my business isn’t big enough to compete with others on the red carpet….I don’t have enough experience for a large event like this”…and so on.
1. Don’t forsake your small beginnings.
You may be a part time entrepreneur using your living room as a home office, but you have to believe and accept that you do have something to offer. Remember Apple started in a garage, Essence magazine started in a basement, and Def Jam Records started in an NYU dorm room. It doesn’t matter where you start, but where you have the motivation to finish. Your passion for what you do is the main ingredient, and not location.
2. Prepare! Prepare! Prepare!
If you want to build your credibility as a business of one, you must put your best foot forward. Eliminate reasons to keep you out of the game. For example, remove typos from emails, have letters and marketing materials proofread, leave professional client messages, etc. I have found that clients don’t care that you are a business of one, it all depends if you can follow through with the skill and service you promise.
3. Don’t let ‘em see you sweat.
If you don’t have the confidence in your business or abilities, how can you expect a client to? I’m always nervous before an interview, event, or meeting a new client, to the point where I can become sick, but they never know it! I know that once I’m in my element, the nerves will subside and I will get to the core matter at hand; business. Practice your pitch in a mirror, with a friend, or even with a pet.
You may not have invented a new business concept, but no one can do what you do, like you can. Respect your contribution to your industry and go for it! Did I thrive at the event? Of course I did! Why? Because I led with passion, professionalism, and am more confident in the God that I serve, than in my own abilities to propel me to the next level. You’re so money and you don’t even know it!