The Most Valuable Income-Building Asset Is Your Expertise
At DesignGood we talk to a lot of people that are either in the process of starting a business or are a few years into their experience as entrepreneurs. They all have the same dilemma. They are trying to figure out what sets their business apart. What is it about articulating your expertise that’s so hard? What are you an expert in exactly? Why do so many of us struggle with calling ourselves an expert in the first place?
There are a few constants that are important at every stage of your business journey, and one of them is establishing and communicating your expertise. Expertise can be many things, but regardless what form it takes it’s always unique to the individual. Your expertise is defined as the collective skills you’ve honed over a lifetime—it’s where you’ve been, the books you’ve read, your passions, your encounters, your lessons, how you deliver on your promises, your training and your experiences—in both work and in life. Your expertise is unique to you, and we’re willing to bet you know much more than you think you do.
We always tell our clients that people want to do business with people. Your clients and customers are hiring YOU specifically because of your unique blend of knowledge and experiences. Experience and expertise are sometimes one and the same, and this especially comes into play when switching careers, industries or roles. Especially if you’re making a big change in your career (like, let’s say, going from working for someone to working for yourself), you’re bringing the lessons learned, experiences had, connections made, style and skills on that next step of your journey.
Am I Really An Expert?
As a business owner the pendulum will always swing between self doubt and self confidence. Chances are if you own a business, or are thinking about starting one, that seed of desire to birth a company means you have what it takes. You know deep down you have something incredible to offer, and that light inside of you is what your customers are looking for. You bring a lifetime of skills to the table, and your passion and determination are what will set you apart.
Fly the Plane Before You’re Ready
Experience is what strengthens your expertise. It may seem scary, but even if you haven’t done something exactly as you’d eventually like to be doing it, the key is to just start and refine as you go. Being in the act of doing is what gives us the information and the clues we need to get to the next level. After all, we were built to grow and evolve, and your business will do the same.
Everyone Starts Somewhere
“Timing, perseverance and ten years of trying will eventually make you look like an overnight success.” —Biz Stone, renowned entrepreneur
Here’s a little exercise when you’re wondering where to begin: Think about all the people you admire in business and in life. Consider their beginnings and the way they’ve evolved over the years, noting that every year you’re in business your expertise will deepen.
When I started my first company, Deuce Creative, in 2005, I thought I was going to change the world through design. It was something I was good at, and has been drawn to my whole life. I believed everyone needed “good design”, and that it truly made a difference in how businesses show up in the world. I saw the power of perception and creating a memorable brand, I knew I was onto something and I believed deeply in it.
Over the years my passions have changed. Now I understand the mighty power of story, systems and authentic communication. I have learned about the needs of entrepreneurs, and consumers, and I understand the importance of staying inspired, self care and the value of lifelong learning.
With that, my business’s focus has shifted. DesignGood now starts with the entrepreneur first, and helps them mindfully create their business and brand with intention. We then we translate that intention and passion into a brand using design as a tool. A powerful one at that, but now our expertise is our process whereas before, the story started and stopped with design.
Imposter syndrome: Everyone’s had it—that pesky feeling that you aren’t as good as you think and are waiting to just be found out that you’re an imposter instead of an expert. The best way to combat that feeling is to stay in action. Keep learning, keep practicing your skill, keep making connections, and act “as if” you’re already doing that big thing you so deeply want to be known for someday.
That’s the also the beauty of creating a powerful, connected brand. Having a solid brand foundation allows you to be seen for who you are—and who you aspire to be as a business owner—that much sooner.
Our advise to you? Be yourself, plain and simple. Don’t try to be someone else who has already “made it” in your respective field. Sure, it’s fine to study them, and take away best practices, but the only way to be seen and admired by clients is to show up as the boldest, biggest, brightest version of yourself.
You Don’t Need All the Clients—You Just Need The Right Ones
Even if you feel confident in your expertise and ability to deliver, a lot of fear and overwhelm comes from “trying” to get people to hire you. At DesignGood, we always remind our clients that you don’t need ALL the clients, you just need the right ones. You need a handful of people that will trust you, believe and you and be your evangelists. That’s how businesses are built—one powerful relationship at a time.
It’s also important to be realistic: How many clients can you actually work with while maintaining the level of quality needed to keep them as lifelong fans? Businesses are about doing incredibly solid work for one client, then the next, then the next. That keeps your energy high, and it keeps you attracting more of the people that are the right fit for what you have to offer. It’s how high-vibe entrepreneurs operate. They focus on the delivery, and know the right people will show up. You do your part, and the universe will return the favor.
All About Energy
You hear us talk a lot about energy being high-vibe entrepreneurs, so what does that mean? At any given moment you are attracting or blocking situations, experiences or people into your life. When you are conduct your life and business in sync with who you are and come from a place of service, the right people will show up. Use your work to make positive, meaningful connections, and setting out to maintain a business that is intentional, purposeful and embodies your unique gifts is high-vibe, and it’s the quickest way to build meaningful, purposeful relationships in business and in life.
Want more help?
If you’re feeling unsure about where you fit in, or want to know how to make your business grow and prosper, the secret is maintaining high energy that attracts the people and situations that allow you to deliver your gifts in a way that serves others. Download our High Vibe Entrepreneur Method Workbook and other free tools here. And keep checking back to this page—more tools are coming soon.