I have a following. I hear nice things about my blog posts, podcasts and weekly videos. But let’s be honest, I am not a Seth Godin, who has one of the top 20 blogs in the world, or Jay Baer, who has become the master of content marketing from his home in Bloomington, IN. They are pros, the best of the best at what they do.
I blog for a number of reasons, I love ideas, as a former crime writer, investigative reporter and editor, I enjoy the creative process, and because I write about the work about which I am passionate. Writing is part of my journey to be the best I can be in this field.
What Will It Take?
Have you ever thought about what it would take to be the best of the best? Seriously, have you ever sat down and taken a deep dive reflection about your knowledge, skill sets and record of accomplishments and then measured your work against those who are considered industry leaders and thought gurus? It is a humbling exercise, let me assure you.
This brings me to an important question we all need to ask from time to time: What are we not doing, what keeps us from breaking out and attracting the kind of attention that would assure that the rent and light bill will be paid long into the future with no muss or fuss? What steps do we need to take that will help propel ourselves into the exclusive ranks of “sought after thought leader?”
There are bloggers who argue that there are simple formulas for success. I don’t know about you, but after clicking on the link to learn a life-changing truth in this or that article, I am always underwhelmed. It seems that the writer’s formula for success is to follow an internet formula that happens to be a hot strategy to “build traffic.” It is all about clicks, page views, and shares.
No Easy Answers
I doubt seriously that in clicks, page views and shares that you are going to find a real pathway or real insight to find the work about which you can be passionate or the secret that will propel you to the top of your field.
My advice to you is to discount all of that. You may find some inspiration but finding the secrets for your success will not be in a list of five or six statements.
Follow your passion. Think deeply, carefully and courageously about your career today. Is this really the work you love to do? Is there something you would be more happy doing? I know, that is easy advice to give and I appreciate that there are often very real, tough financial realities that must be accommodated. I get that. But you only have one life. If you come to the end and you cannot truly say, “ I have loved the work that I have done,” how will you feel?
I know executives who have been terminated or laid off several times. Instead of thinking seriously about whether they are truly satisfied with their work, they simply ask outplacement coaches and recruiters to find them the same job in another city. You know, in your heart of hearts they are just going through the motions to pay life’s bills. That is sad. I always challenge them to take that deep dive.
There is always another door to happiness. But if you do not sit down and take the time to challenge yourself and your career goals, and to allow yourself to dream of what could be, you are probably missing the last train to happiness.
I invite you to join me for our career video this Saturday. You can find my channel on YouTube.
ACHE CONGRESS PRESENTATION
Join Dianne Dismukes, and me at the ACHE Congress on Wednesday, March 28 for a 90-minute course on interviewing skills for senior executives. We will help you learn how to differentiate yourself from an increasingly crowded market.
© 2018 John Gregory Self