The title “Attracting the Right People” may sound a little bit misleading, but don’t worry, I am not going to share dating tips with you. This piece is about engagement and visibility. You need to wave your flag high and be proud to get attention. But then you’ve also got to hold the conversation consistently to be credible. This applies whether it’s at your place of work or running your own business. If you find you’re getting something other than meaningful engagement, take a long hard look at what you’re putting out there.
Attracting People with Your Values
A client of mine recently struggled to recruit employees. He placed job adverts on LinkedIn but no joy. What he received were applications from industry peers that were just not the right fit.
He wanted someone who aligned with his values the way he wanted to run his own business. He wanted someone he could bounce off of and have a good topical conversation with. He wanted someone who could fly the flag for his business and potentially take it over and leave a legacy.
Yet, he told no one of his values. He didn’t share how his business came about and what the practice meant to him and his colleagues. He didn’t put himself out there to have an online conversation in the right way. He didn’t demonstrate that he was a nice guy to talk to, supportive, someone who knew his stuff.
So why would the right people want to join this company if they had no idea what he really wanted? You may have heard it before: people buy from people. To do that, they need to know, like, and trust you. Your peers need evidence that you do what you say. They need assurance that you are worth the risk before they leave a job they might even hate.
Defining and Promoting Your Expertise
Another example is a client who listed 42 different services he could provide his clients on his website. He was one person and had no plans to expand or grow his company in that way. He may have liked the variety, but it was confusing for clients to see what he was passionate about and an expert in.
It’s one thing to diversify your work in case the market changes. It’s another to present a picture to the world that you’re a jack of all trades and master of none. It doesn’t help the trust part of selling and it becomes very confusing.
The Importance of Self-Awareness
A further example is my own. Promoted to Director, I found that the circumstances in themselves were challenging. I was told just a few months in, “Marion, you are just not engaging enough. You suck the life out of the room.” Not being engaging enough was hard to hear, especially as my job was to do and be just that.
If you’ve heard my other podcasts or talks, you’ll know the importance of trusting your gut instinct. You should know when something is not right. You should be able to tell the difference between a lack of confidence or a lack of skill. You should be aware when you are being put in a situation where you just can’t win. You can work through the first two. The latter, however, is a losing battle.
Finding Your Why and Listening to People
So how do we become this captivating magnet that attracts clients and respect from industry peers? Firstly, you’ve got some work to do to understand why you do what you do. You can’t articulate what is important to you to others if you don’t understand it first yourself.
Find the words, work on them to express what you need to say and have an opinion. It doesn’t need to be a controversial one either. Take pride in your work. Don’t just share testimonials. You can connect more with potential clients and employees if you share what you did and the difference it made. It’s helping people understand how you can help them.
Finally, listen. Give your peers or clients time and attention. Hear what they have to say so that they feel heard and understood. How would you feel if someone took the time to do that? Would you be more likely to buy from them? Would you be more likely to have a coffee and a chat about a potential role? You probably would.
Connect with Marion Ellis:
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- How Great Leaders Inspire Action by Simon Sinek https://youtu.be/u4ZoJKF_VuA
- “Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action” by Simon Sinek https://www.amazon.com/Start-Why-Leaders-Inspire-Everyone/dp/1591846447
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