I am writing this on the Manchester to Euston Train as I am on my way to Gatwick where I am coaching on a conference for 4 days.  You may or may now know that one of the things I love to do is coach people to be ace public speakers.  It is a great feeling to see someone who is petrified or just clueless about public speaking, able (by the end of 4 long 14 hour days) to stand up and deliver a 30 minute speech that anyone would be interested in.  And – after 6 1-2-1 sessions, to see them able to present a 90 minute key note, without notes!  Very satisfying.

And I have just been to The Business Network Manchester, which is one of my favourite networking events, where 2 people made my day – probably without realising it.  Which made me reflect on how much we all take ourselves and our unique abilities, for granted.

And here’s the thing, if you take yourself for granted then you will find that certain things happen that are not at all helpful.  More on that later

I’m going to share these with you – not to brag – but to illustrate that how you see yourself and how others see you are often 2 very different things.

Before the networking lunch there was a seminar – presented by Barbara Guest – entitled ‘Yes I Can’, which was interesting and thought provoking and all about how what we believe affects what we achieve.

If you, like me, are you own worst critic, you could do worse than speak to Barbara about how she can help get rid of some of the limiting self-beliefs that most people have.  Even though I am generally a can do, positive, person, and even though intellectually I believe I can achieve anything I set my mind to – sometimes I self-sabotage, and that is because of the underlying and sub conscious beliefs that I hold.

I’m guessing that is true for you too? 

So, what happened today?

Firstly, one of my clients introduced me to the person he was speaking to as ‘One of the most connected people I know’.  I hadn’t really thought about it in those terms, but I do network a lot and over the last 13 years of being a director at Stockport and then Greater Manchester Chamber I get to meet a few people you wouldn’t normally come across – politicians, prime ministers and the like.  In the course of my work running a social media business, I get to meet really interesting people -footballers, actresses, musicians, reporters, scientists, and lots of fabulous business people large and small (the business that is, not the people lol).

And I found it interesting that this was the first thing my client mentioned about me – when to me it is just something I take for granted.

The other thing that made my day, as I relayed to the people on my table at lunch, was that I was talking to a new client and asked her if she was happy with what we were doing for her, on her social media accounts and blogs.  She said to me “I completely forgot to tell you.  My husband said to me the other day he loved my blog and the point I made in the blog he thought was very insightful.  He couldn’t believe it when I told him I didn’t write it.   I bloody love what you are doing, it is saving me huge amounts of time and effort”.  

I love to write, and apparently, I am also quite good at writing as ‘someone else’, in their voice.   Because I find that easy and fun – it doesn’t seem like hard work and I therefore perhaps hadn’t realised the value that it holds for other people, who do not find it quite so easy.

So, what is it that people think is valuable, special, unique about you – that you don’t either realise or value in yourself?

You see the downsides of not valuing yourself are many.   If you don’t value your special talents, you may not get paid what you are worth.  If you take yourself for granted, maybe other people will too.  If you don’t value yourself, you are likely to put everyone else first and yourself last, which leads to burn out and a gradual eroding away of your enjoyment of what you do until it is no longer fun, or easy, but a chore.

When it comes to business, you really need to know what your customers value about you and your service.  And if you don’t know – just go ask them.  You might just be surprised at their answers. 

By the way…

One thing I DO know people value is our Leading Women in Business Events.  The next one is March 29th venue to be advised.   So if you or anyone you know would like to come along – go have a look at the details and book your place here.   You don’t have to be female but it helps if you are interested in women in business and the issues relating to that. 

Till next time