Have you ever met someone at a networking event and when you look at his or her business card it looked like the dictionary threw up? It includes every possible skill, title, and accolade. I call them the slasher!
They pitch themselves as a make-up artist, event planner, actress, oh and they need to pay the bills so they work as a gas station attendant. And you are left mouth gaping open in amazement and sometimes feeling unaccomplished because how they get so much done and you can barely juggle one position? Then you stop and think, that's not superwoman, it's super annoying.
The reality is that you are what people perceive of you. And while that may suck, it is the truth. So how can I trust someone who doesn't trust themselves? Trust? What does that have to do with it? Well here's the rub, if you are a slasher, I believe you may have commitment issues and don't trust yourself to fully explore the journey required for one of those titles. When business gets tough you revert back to freelancing. Or when you didn't receive the client as you anticipated, you fall back to a 9-5 job. And that is a huge issue for me as I consider working with you.
Let me be clear, I believe in working 9-5 until you reach your dreams. And I certainly believe (and encourage) having multiple sources of income. But I don't believe you have to present all of those 'hustles' and dreams to the world. We don't need to see your stuff. Ask yourself, "How can I truly accomplish one task at 100% if I am spread so thinly?" The question really begs the question, how can you serve others when you aren't serving yourself. The answer is simple. You can't.
The bottom line is this, what I believe of you as a make-up artist is different than that of a gas station attendant. Understand I'm not saying those roles aren't due equal respect. But I am saying you will be perceived differently based on your position, particularly if what I know of you varies from my colleague who I am referring you to.
You lose two critical opportunities when you operate as a slasher, the ability to tell your story and own your credibility.
Your story. The core of a solid brand lives in its story, among other foundations. We have only just begun using the buzzword storytelling but the fact remains, sharing a solid and succinct story has the ability to connect you with the consumer. By having so many titles you take away the audiences ability to truly use you most effectively.
Your credibility. Your brand is the sum of all experiences someone has with you. That means to create buy-in you must maintain integrity and the ability to show your value. If you are confused by what your offerings then I certainly can't understand how to support them. That leaves me not trusting you or the process you are selling.
Just remember, it's impossible to be a jack-of-all-trades and maintain a solid brand.
Cheers to un-slashing your life and business.
Kia Jarmon is creator of brand depth + facilitator of ideas + curator of conversation + sculptor of stories at boutique PR and brand strategy firm MEPR Agency. She also loves connecting businesses & people to their heartbeat and coaches them through a Brand Mapping program, where they navigate their brand compass. Kia is a 25 year life-time member of Girl Scouts and daily she lives by the promise "on my honor I will try…to help people at all times". Kia is also a new mommy to a handsome son. She resides in Donelson.You can find more atwww.MEPRagency.com or www.KiaJarmon.com.