Before you put yourself "Out There" … Do You have the Edge? Here's how to get it!
"You can tell more about a person by what he says about others than you can by what others say about him." John Maxwell
If you really want to "get out there" – make sure your packaging is tight. Work on the outside packaging as well as the "inside package." If not, you'll be hiring a publicist to do crisis PR for you because you'll need someone to do reputation management. And it's harder to stop bad press than to create good press!
So, what is the Edge? It's that "IT" factor that propels success in life. Do you have it? People who have the Edge share a number of characteristics. They are successful, but never at the expense of others. They are people who genuinely love and care about others. They hide by the Golden Rule and excellence (not perfection) is their goal.
They are long-term survivors in the business world, which has a way of devouring its own. They survive because they maintain friends. Relationships are the key to their success. They know more than networking. They connect with others and click!
They keep these friends because they are loyal to them. Their networks invariably describe them, in glowing terms.
Here are some of the qualities that can help you develop the Edge – which is essential before any PR campaign is to begin.
1. DEPENDABILITY. Do what you say you will do. This can be tricky, because it involves a certain amount of self knowledge and self management. If you say you'll follow up by 9 am Friday, you have to know what is feasible for you to be true to your word. How long will it take you to finish a project based on other things going on? You keep your schedule and know your work habits ..
Never say, "I can not" before you've tried.
2. TRUSTWORTHINESS. You may hear gossip, but you do not have to pass it along. Do not spread something that is confidential. If you get a reputation for discretion, everyone will confide in you and you will know everything that is going on, even if you do not talk about it.
3. RESPONSIBILITY. People with the Edge accept responsibility for their actions and do not blame others if they fail. They do not make excuses and freely give credit to their associates. They are quick to apologize when they are wrong. A great trait to have!
4. COMMUNICATION. Keep in touch. Call people back. Be a nice person and write short, friendly email or regular notes to stay in touch. If you are in contact with your network of friends and associates when things are going along fine for you – you'll see that they'll be there when you need them. Do not just reach out to people when you need a "favor." People know when they are being used.
5. GENEROSITY . Make a habit of being generous and kind. Do things for free without expecting a return for it. Volunteer. Give away information or small bits of advice. Pass along job leads and provide tips to those looking for a job. Look for opportunities to put people in touch with each other. Be known as a "go to" person. Someone who is a "giver" not a "taker."
If you recommend a friend for a job or give them a lead for some business, you have given that friend a fabulous compliment and you have earned some long-term loyalty.
Even though you sometimes must say no to a request, make sure in some way you are always saying yes. Here is one way to do it. When you decide you can not do something, give a reason reason then offer to help in some other way: "I can not attend this event because I am right in the middle of this assignment, but I would give you another person who would be Willing to go and they would really get a lot out of it. "
6. COURTESY AND KINDNESS . If you can not pray about it – do not talk about. Speak well of people or do not speak at all. This includes people who have fired you, wronged you or spoken poorly about you. This is really how to have the Edge! This will toughen you up and mold your humility.
Display good manner at all times, particularly with those who actively antagonize you. It will drive them absolutely crazy. It may also win them over. The Golden Rule at work – will yield Gold every time. Do unto others as you would want them to do unto you!
7. INTEGRITY AND ETHICS. If you can not do it in front of your child, then do not do. If it makes you uncomfortable or you feel a "ping" in your spirit – that's a sign that is telling you you've crossed the line and in a danger zone. Develop a standard of behavior you can live with. Let your conscience be your guide. Let peace rule. This means when you make a tough decision, you feel you have done the right thing, even if it hurts.
8. PERSISTENCE. No one is ever a success in life unless they know how to persist. This is probably the most single way to get the EDGE!
Victory is assured to those who end – until the end. Almost everyone has one good idea, one good effort, one good impulse. People with the Edge prove themselves by repeatedly being willing to do what others will not. They are not quitters. They are relentless and will try every angle and research every opportunity – and because they are relationship driven – will enlist the help of their friends.
People with the Edge can get everyone in the boat rowing in the same direction.
Before you think a good photo, brochure, corporate logo, website and press kit will give you the Edge – think again. The Edge is taking time to develop. Character counts and it starts on the inside. It starts at home. It starts within.
No amount of PR can promote the right message if you do not have the right interior motives. It takes time to become that sharp, so you might as well start now: in business, you are only as good as your relationships – with God, Yourself and others.