You know that person in your industry who’s the best in the business? (And charging accordingly?) What’s holding you back from being that person?
Let me get straight to the point: I think it’s time for us all to put our eggs in one basket.
Does this go against conventional wisdom; against everything you’ve ever been taught about business? Does it seem completely counter-intuitive?
If so let me ask you some questions. Have you ever:
- Taken on a job when you have no idea if you even have the ability to get it done?
- Taken on a job because you need the money, even though you know you’ll hate doing it?
- Taken on a job you’ve never done before because it’s from an existing customer and if you don’t do it they’ll go to someone else (which could lead to you losing their business)?
- Taken on a job even though you know it’s going to entail burning the candle at both ends – all because you’re afraid if you don’t agree to the customer’s time- frame they’ll go somewhere else?
Well I have. All four of them actually. And many times at that.
If you’re the same (and I’m guessing you are), you’ll know how exhausting it is. A poverty mentality (ie I can’t afford to turn away any work) leads to fear-based decisions and before you know it, you’ve spent several years of your business life like the proverbial hamster on a wheel.
Think back to the time of the master craftsman (or woman of course). He was the best at whatever he did, people sought him out, accepted his time-frame to complete a job, accepted his rates, valued his advice and referred him far and wide.
Sounds nice doesn’t it?
So how do we get to be a master craftsman (with all the associated perks)? Well we just need to be the best at what we do. This doesn’t happen by accident of course. It takes passion, commitment, education, (we have to let our customers know just how passionate and dedicated we are to being the best), and it takes delivering: over and over again. It also means being brave enough to say no to the jobs you shouldn’t be taking, to turn away the customer who doesn’t value what you do.
This might seem brave indeed when it comes to paying the rent on Friday, but in my eyes, it’s actually an investment and a smart one at that.
When you become the master craftsperson – you don’t need to chase work, you don’t need to worry about money and best of all, you don’t need to do work you don’t enjoy doing. Which to me means, if you’re looking at what kind of marketing you should be doing, the best kind is to commit to becoming the best at whatever you do.
In Tasmania, there is a butcher in Bicheno. I’ve had his ham referred to me from every corner of Tasmania; also in Thailand, in the USA and everywhere in Australia. Why? Because his ham is extraordinary; he has mastered his craft and he is the best at what he does.
I can hear you saying “that’s cute Andrew, but it doesn’t apply to me”.
Really? I absolutely, positively believe that this applies more today than at any other time in history. Why? Because people are chasing “the best” in every industry in every town, in every community – and today finding “the best” has become far easier through the use of technology.
Someone has to be the best in your industry so it may as well be you.
So rather than trying to be everything to everyone, instead of doing jobs you know you shouldn’t be doing, focus on becoming the absolute best at what you do. It won’t happen overnight, but if you make the commitment and do what it takes, it will happen.
And it will be so worth it because once you’ve developed this reputation, you will become a magnet for opportunity, you will attract more of your ideal clients, you’ll be able to do less work for better money, and best of all, you’ll enjoy the work you’re doing much more.
Do you have a ‘poverty mentality’ when it comes to deciding what work to take on?