How do you answer “What do you do…?”

How do you think of yourself?

Many people give an answer that is ‘socially acceptable’.

As humans … we are incredibly proficient in collaborating with others and working together.

The driver for this … we need to fit in.

This goes back to our ancestry … the worst thing that could happen to us as a mammal (or an animal) is to be alone … it leaves us vulnerable. So, we collaborate, and we work to fit in.

As humans, we can think beyond this instinct. But we still have that drive to fit in.

So … what do you say when someone asks what you do?

It can feel uncomfortable to say something that would make you stand out. It is easier to describe what you do so that someone understands it.

But doesn’t that pigeon hole you?

It dilutes what might be unique about you.

When this is the identity you adopt, it weakens your proposition … you become less distinct.

This WILL make it harder for a client to choose you!

“I am a coach” or “I am a designer” or “I am a consultant”.

and so is everyone else.

You might think that the only way to compete with others is to claim you are better … you have more experience or better qualifications.

Being better is NOT a necessary position to take.

The Secret

It is much more effective to highlight where you are DIFFERENT, not better.

It might feel scary to stand out and be different, but … when you are DIFFERENT from other people, when you are distinct, clients will understand how YOU can help them, and understand what might be missing in alternative solutions.

Think of an electric drill vs a hand-crank drill … is one better than another?

Instinctively you would say the electric drill is better because it is easier and faster.

… but, if the job is something that requires care and precision, the electric drill is unlikely to be the better oprion.

So … for this problem the hand drill is more appropriate than the electric drill.

THIS is how you describe yourself as different … you offer an appropriate tool for a particular problem you’re solving.

Rather than running with the crowd and fitting in with everyone else, describe yourself as DIFFERENT and not better.

When you can do this … and your ‘tool’ is the perfect solution to fix your clients’ problem … you will achieve what YOU want.