Monday, July 21, 2008

Do You Really Believe in Your Products and Brand?

These two articles sum up something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. Maybe what I'm about to discuss is old news to some of you, but it might also be an important reminder.

In 12 Proven Ways to Get Your Post to the Top of Digg, Seth Godin basically tells his readers to not just think short term. Not every post on your blog has to get to the top of Digg. Just write about what you’re passionate about, and in the end, your blog, and your writing, and even your business, will thank you for it.

In Passion is Rocket Fuel for Your Personal Brand, Dan Schawbel discusses the importance of passion in pursuing excellence in one’s career and life. He goes on to write a few tips for finding your passion and letting it come through in your writing, your business, or your brand.

Obviously, your job cannot always be fun. There are parts of every job, no matter how good it is, that you simply won't be very excited about. That’s obvious. But if you don’t enjoy what you’re doing, if you aren’t passionate about the work you’re producing, you’re not going to produce great work. You can produce good work, but if you don’t enjoy something, it’s pretty tough to motivate yourself, day after day, to produce really great work that catches the attention of your clients and customers.

Similarly, I’ve also been reading “Good in a Room: How to Sell Yourself (And Your Ideas) And Win Over Any Audience.” One of author’s key points is that, in terms of interacting with potential clients or business acquaintances, you just can’t “fake it.” You can’t fake empathy, and you can’t routinely fake being excited about a product that you don’t truly believe in. Most people will see right through you.

Now, I don’t mean this post to be about rethinking one’s longterm career choices and goals. I believe that this is something to keep in mind every day. If you have the opportunity, pick the project that really excites you - you'll produce better results. Design, market, and strengthen your brand in way that you can be proud of. In the long run, your peace of mind and your business will thank you.