Posted: 7th February 2019
One of my favourite quotes is from career coach Laura Berman Fortgang who says “It’s not what you do that brings career satisfaction, it’s who you get to be while you’re doing it.” This equally applies to those of us who run our own business.
When we feel a bit stuck, lost, dissatisfied, or lacking in motivation, we don’t always need to make a big change, often we just need to do some fine tuning – to bring what we do (and who we’re doing it with, where and how we’re doing it) back in to alignment with our core values and who we truly are.
Here’s one way to think this through.
What are you uniquely able to contribute to others?
It’s the thing that people come to you for – why they are drawn to you. And that’s not just your clients or customers. It’s friends and family too – anyone you come into contact with.
You may already have some idea about what this is. A good way of gaining insight is to ask others why they like working with you. For example, if you are an accountant, your best clients will probably never say it’s because of your genius at profit and loss – there’s another, more personal dimension and value that you bring to the relationship.
If you ask my clients about working with me, they are likely to talk about experiencing a calm ‘space’ in which they can reflect, do their best thinking and work things out.
I definitely feel I am doing my best work when I’m using my patience and intuition to guide and empower others to gain clarity and create a business or work life that they enjoy and find fulfilling. Ok, there’s a lot in there too about marketing and writing – but the first part is key for me, and it seems to my clients as well.
So, simply ask yourself “What really draws my customers to me? What values are at the heart of my work? What are the personal qualities that make me who I am?”
How you express this value and these qualities is up to you. However, when you do, then you will find a much greater sense of meaning and fulfilment in your work.
Summary of action steps
Choose about 5 work related contacts and ask them:
List the key qualities that emerge and look and see what you can do to express them more fully in your work every day.
Remember the less you allow yourself to express these key qualities (your true value), the more likely it is you will feel dissatisfied or unfulfilled.
If you’d like some help with this, just get in touch.
Jane Heaton is a coach, mentor and marketing specialist working with people who want to start, fine tune or grow their business successfully while being authentic and true to themselves – when they are asking ‘What’s next?’ and know it’s time to explore, prepare and take action.