I had a chance to participate in a panel discussion this morning, about helping people who are thinking of “becoming their own boss.” There’s many paths people might take:
- Starting your own company
- Forming a partnership
- Buying a franchise
- Buying someone else’s existing company
- and others
A great discussion that came afterward, though, was around how to establish one’s expertise in order to find work.
My experience has been that people need to:
- See your expertise
- See it in a credible context
- Understand who you are as a great, professional person
In my case, I’m establishing my brand in northern Colorado as a professional small business coach. So what expertise is valuable to my potential clients?
- That I know all the various parts of running a small business
- That I know how to apply that knowledge in a real business
- That I’m a good guy to work with
What’s a “credible context”? For me, I deliver in-person workshops, write for the local business paper, and participate in selective LinkedIn discussions.
I back this up with a philosophy of optimism, creativity, friendliness, and professionalism. Part of that comes from the larger context of the company, Small Fish Business Coaching, but it’s also something which guides my decisions every day.
If you’re seeking to build your reputation in the industry as a person with expertise, then look at those three dimensions. It’ll help you get your next job, land a consulting contract, or even be considered for higher-valued positions in your current company.