13 July 2017

Not a butt kisser

This is the brief I got from Talk About Creative
"Please just write for your readers - what they want to read - 
just please refer back to anything you like on our blog."
And they will give me some money in return for my words. 
This is what is known in the 'hood as a sponsored post and this is me being upfront about it.
🙌 🙌 🙌 🙌 🙌 🙌 🙌 🙌 🙌

I really don't know what you want to read, dear Readers. But hello, here I am writing. Again. 

I have been working full-time since I was 17 years old.  I've worked in different states and in different countries. I've worked for big globals and small NFPs.  I've worked great jobs surrounded by awful people and some awful jobs surrounded by great people. And it took me a good twenty years to realise something about myself.

I'm incapable of kissing arse.  

Don't get me wrong, I've tried. I could see how it worked from a young age. Say the right thing, curry favour with the 'right people', don't disagree with bosses, laugh a lot, always defer to somebody more senior even if they are talking horse-shit. 

I tried for a very long time. I even caught myself 'tinkling with laughter' at one boss' asinine jokes to prove what a good sport I was. I think occasionally I even cracked the subtle art of 'playing the game'. So it was a gradual realisation for me that it was never going to work for me. I haven't got it in me.  Respect for me is something we earn. A title or seniority in the system doesn't mean shit if you're not treating other people with respect.  And there are a stupid amount of managers out there that don't deserve the respect they demand.

So it was a surprise to me to realise that 12 months into starting my own business, I had gone down the 'playing the game' route in establishing my business.  I was trying to kiss arse and I didn't even know whose butt I was trying to kiss. I was conforming, corporatising and becoming the kind of consultancy that made ME, MYSELF yawn. 

I wasn't loving it. Because it wasn't me. My business started to flourish when I just started being ME again. I'm loud. I'm outspoken. I'm good at what I do. I am good at out of the box thinking. I am so super excited about working with businesses that want to contribute to the world in a way that is good and just and positive (as well as make money - we don't need to be unrealistic here people!)

 I didn't want to work with just anybody, I didn't want to kiss arse to get jobs and work with people that weren't my kind of people. I wanted to work with people that know who I am and what I stand for. I wanted to work with people that are interested in what I know, not just who I know. 

But it's funny.  When we put ourselves out there for the first time, trying to create something that we are massively passionate about, it's so easy to fall down the rabbit hole of taking advice from people not necessarily qualified to do it.  The ol' it worked for them, it's what I should do! All my original business blogs were so freakin' boring that when I rebooted my website last year, I pulled them all down. It was because here on Talking Frankly, where I just wrote as me, it worked. But over on Elverson, I was writing like I had some kind of stick shoved up my rear end. 

And since I work in the new media space, writing copy and articles, creating strategies and managing risk for businesses investing in social - being boring, uninspired and talking in a voice entirely alien to my own was never going to be a good way to build my business. 

And I wish I had I discovered Talk About Creative earlier, I kind of feel I wouldn't have taken as long to work this all from a business perspective. Just this week they put up a post called Why your Facebook Strategy is a pile of POOP!  - it's the kind of stuff I often say to clients, but for some reason - while I think it, and I speak it, I am not blogging about it. 

And my massive - somebody just slapped a fish across my face and yelled "FISH" - moment was blogging never works if you don't write with the same passion for a topic that exists when you talk about it or actually do it.  Everything you blog about is going to be POOP if you're doing it because you have to, and not because blogging is one of the ways you connect and engage with people. 

Which is the whole reason I started blogging in the first place. This is why I'm passionate about social media and it's incredible role in creating positive communities, sharing ideas, education and empowerment.  

So I'm thanking Talk About Creative for the kick up the butt. I'm thanking them for highlighting the disconnect between one of my blogs and the other.  I'm thanking them for the dosh. I'm thanking them for the huge amount of blogs they have written which I can share and use as resources both for myself, and for when I meet others embarking on the, frankly insane, small business journey.

And yes, I used the word JOURNEY. It's okay. I'll see myself out. 

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