Interviews…client discussions…customer presentations…executive briefings…
Think about how you prepare for these?
What do I say? How do I present?
My experiences, my success stories, my thoughts, my views, my ideas….
I work with a lot of people who actually do not feel comfortable making everything about themselves.
When they think the only way to shine at an interview is through a song and dance to showcase their talent, they are put off.
When selling ideas to an executive is perceived as the need to beat their chest to prove their worth, they lose all interest.
When winning a potential client becomes about boasting confidence, they feel inauthentic.
Thinkers, creators, introverts, innovators… Many highly talented people who are full of questions, curiosity, debate are not necessarily compelled to prove themselves. They rather focus on their work.
As they cringe and complain about preparing for an upcoming event, there is one thing I ask them to do which visibly shifts their discomfort:
It's about how you can help them. It's about your work. It's tangible, it's real. Even at a job interview. The hiring manager has a need, the company has a position to accomplish critical goals and you can be the best person to help them get there.
How can you help them solve their challenge if you were to get the job? What are some relevant examples for this?
How can you help your client achieve their goals if they were to work with you? What would that look like?
What are the benefits of what you do for the customer? How will they grow their business? Manage risks?
When we shift the focus from ourselves to the people involved, we become authentic and present. People connect better with us when we are our true selves. It is no longer draining but freeing and energizing. Also, when we are fully present in a conversation we ask relevant questions, have a dialogue, notice subtleties and respond appropriately.
So…relax! Get out of your head. Just help people see how you can help them, solve a challenge or simply make life better!