That’s the motto of the Girl Guides, and a good one for business owners to adopt too.
I thought of this after the article about me appeared in the Edge Leadership magazine, and several people asked how did this happen? Good question. To be honest I am not totally sure as the request came out of the blue from someone I don’t know, but who apparently had been following me.
But it does lead me to share some advice on how to be prepared, should such an opportunity arise for you.
- Be professional at all times – you don’t know who is “watching” you
With social media, you really aren’t always aware of who is following you, so it is important to watch what you say, what you post and to be professional in all that you do, especially on LinkedIn.
- Be a regular on social media – build a following
While you will want to post about what you are doing, you also have to play well in the sandbox. By that I mean, share other people’s articles. Make comments on other people’s posts. In other words, it is not all about you.
- Develop your personal brand – be authentic
Think about how you want to brand yourself. How do you want to come across to readers, followers or your audience? Be authentic and consistent.
- Have good stories in your back pocket
Sometimes you will be interviewed on the spot, so be ready with some stories to showcase who you are. This is actually a good tool to have in place when you are networking too so when someone asks you what you do, you can share a success story to illustrate your business.
- Be ready with professional photos
I was asked to provide two different photos for the article. Fortunately I had some great ones taken by Rita Zietsma on file. They were both different and so fit the magazine’s needs. So have more than one photo – preferably in different outfits!
- Think through your core messages
What’s important to you? What do you want to be your legacy? Think through what you want to say and what messages you want to convey. For me, for example, it has always been about giving back and women supporting one another.
- Say yes
I am usually the one encouraging women not to say yes to everything, but when a PR opportunity arises, say yes. Even if you are nervous, riddled with self doubt and asking yourself “why me?” Get over it. This is your chance to shine, to let the world know all about you.
- Off the record doesn’t always exist
Be careful what you share. Sometimes people will reveal more than they want, and will quickly tell the interviewer that their comments are off the record. As someone who interviews people regularly, I honour that request, but not everyone does. So choose your words carefully.
As for this latest experience – hey to be in the winner’s circle of the magazine along with Tommy Hilfiger – what can I say? Maybe I’ve just been discovered!
Company of Women
I have had an eclectic career from running non-profit organizations and being editor of a national magazine, to working for government on women’s issues. In 2003 I launched Company of Women, an organization that supports women in business. A prolific blogger, I also write for the Huffington Post, and several other online publications. I am the author of five books on women and entrepreneurship, and co-author of Good Enough. Embrace who you are. Unleash your brilliance. which is available on amazon.ca In June, 2016 I launched Full Circle Publishing offering one-stop services to get your words out into the world.