How to Build Confidence & Nab Your Dream Job
One of the biggest mistakes you can make in courting a client, going after that dream job, attracting new customers, or changing careers is coming across as though you aren’t confident in your service, product, or personal value. Which is why I want to talk about that very thing in today’s video – and give you some tips for how to re-focus your energy on the things that really will help you rock that interview and nab your next gig.
If you aren’t a fan of video, scroll down. It’s all in the transcript.
Transcript: Hi! This is Gigi Griffis with Content for Do-Gooders. As you know if you follow the blog, I’ve been doing a series of videos and articles about how to land a content job. Today, I want to do another video…but first I want to say that this isn’t just about content jobs. This is about any kind of job, any kind of gig. If you want to go from being full-time to being a freelancer. If you just graduated college and are trying to land your first job. If you’re switching careers in your 40s. This applies to everybody.
I’ve noticed a really common problem among people changing careers or making a change in their career and I want to point it out so that you don’t fall into the same trap.
The illustration I want to use first is this:
I’m here in Sayulita, Mexico. I am working from here for a couple months because, as some of you know, I work full-time remotely all over the world. And one of the friends that I made here is this amazing woman who quit her job and came down here for three months to rethink things, to figure out the next step in her career, to refresh herself, to get a break from the really demanding corporate world she was in.
She’s decided since being here that what she really wants to do is freelance. She’s a talented niche medical and technical writer. She has contacts in those fields. She speaks four languages. And she is very personable and likable and seems very reliable. In short, she is exactly the kind of contractor you’d want to have.
So, she’s obviously brilliant and has a lot going for her. Yet, every time we talk about the business and what she wants to do, she’s constantly thinking about the negative. She’s thinking “okay, what compromises can I make if they don’t like that I want to work remotely?,” “What compromises can I make if they don’t like my hourly rate?,” “What compromises can I make?”
So she’s starting from a place of thinking about compromises and what might go wrong.
And what happens when you do that is then, when you go into that first email, first job interview, first meeting with someone, all you’ve spent your time doing is thinking about the compromises and when it comes to being enthusiastic about what you’re doing and telling them why you can help their business and why you care about helping their business, that’s not the stuff you’ve been dwelling on. And that’s not the stuff that’s going to flow really naturally out of you.
So, another example is a guy I met down here who basically brokers information. He has contacts with big content, data, and information providers and he works closely with corporations to get the data that they need, get content they need, get information they need from these providers.
This is something he could do anywhere in the world.
And his dream is to live on a beach in Mexico or Central America. And he’s telling me about this and he’s excited about his dream, and yet, a few moments into it, it suddenly becomes, “yeah, and the compromises I can make are…I can maybe lower my prices because people aren’t going to want to pay me to sit on a beach in Mexico and work.”
Again, he’s coming from this negative place. He’s coming from this compromising place. He’s trying to pre-emptively solve a problem that may not even exist for people.
I’ve noticed this across a lot of industries, across a lot of different people. I’ve noticed this with people just coming into content strategy. Sometimes I’ll look at people’s portfolios for them and I see a lot of “I don’t have a lot of experience, buuut…” and it comes across as not being confident.
So, here’s how I’d like you to think about going into a first email, going into a first interview, going into a first can-I-buy-you-coffee…
Instead of thinking about all the compromises, I want you to think about it like a first date. You wouldn’t go into a first date and say “well, I snore…but if we get married, I’m willing to have separate bedrooms.”
It’s a weird thing to bring up in a first email or a first date. First off, the person hasn’t had a problem with you snoring, they’ve never mentioned snoring. They don’t know that they want to marry you. They don’t know you yet. And you’re going straight into problem solving a problem that doesn’t yet exist.
Instead of doing that, when you’re on that first date, what is the advice any dating expert would give you?
They would tell you: make it about the other person, ask good questions, listen, have a conversation. Don’t be so worried about solving their problems, making them like you. Be worried about whether it’s a good fit. Be worried about what’s going on with them and what problem do they really have that you can solve. What things do they really need you to do?
Just like in the world of dating, that’s what you want to do with your first interaction with a new client, with a new potential boss, with an HR professional. You want to go into it and ask them questions. You want to know what their real pain points are.
It is a detail that you want to work in the south of France. It may be important to them and you can address it if it is. If it is not important to them, great – it’s a footnote. You can say “yes, I’ll be working from France. Happy to fly in if you need me to.”
That’s what I want to leave you with today: this shift in attitude. Instead of focusing on what you don’t have, which is not only a little weird, but is also kinda soul killing. If you’re focusing on what you don’t have, it melts away at the confidence that you need if you’re going to start a new venture, switch careers at 40, start a new business…
Instead, think about what problems you can solve once you’ve heard what they are.
Think about what questions you can ask. Think about how you can connect with that client. Think about why you’re doing what you do. Why do you care enough about this to make this a business? Why do you care enough to make a career switch?
Thanks for joining me. Again, this is Gigi Griffis with Content for Do-Gooders. I hope you enjoyed this video. Feel free to email me if you have questions. Thank you!
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