BWM 25/100 – Stop being an a$$hole!

 BWM 25/100 – Stop being an a$$hole!
BWM 25/100 – Stop being an a$$hole!

I originally planned on writing about my first business breakfast and networking in this post but I believe this topic is more important.

Here’s why

I have received the following message from a professional network “I follow the looseness of your development. Not in details of course, but one or another metamorphosis you have been through. Content wise and also visually really exciting! Please allow (and understand my openness as a compliment): for my personal, subjective, stuffy taste there is one ring too much on the picture. (My nose piercing, we spoke about it before). My impression: This is not really you. So I know I’ve put myself on thin ice by saying this and I hope that you do not regard this as inappropriate. If you feel comfortable with it: leave it in!”

Absolutely limited by my appearance rather than my actions. Btw this person does not really know me at all.

This is what happened in the last two years – action wise

For roughly two years a lot of stuff has happened – otherwise then getting pierced. I’ll put it in a short list. These are my accomplishments as you might want to name it. I am not writing those to show off but to give a sense of what people could have seen in my life.

2014-2016

  • moved abroad
  • started and finished a postgraduate degree (MSc Global Leadership)
  • worked while studying full-time
  • have read as many non-fictional books on personal growth like never before
  • started this blog and am blogging regularly since a year, document what I have learned and try to save other people’s time by providing book summaries for example, try to deliver value in a nutshell
  • increased my English to a pretty good level
  • worked employed
  • got engaged and married
  • found all my braveness and started my own company, quit my job and am trying to make my dream work
  • got a piercing

So, you might think “why did she put the piercing there?” – because it’s the ONLY thing I get reduced to by a couple of people.

Being a woman on a professional social network

Other messages I have received to profile changes on LinkedIn and Xing are “there is something in your nose”, “you looked prettier before” – some people also like it. Then I get from business contacts messages like “:-*” or “what if I would have sent you a picture that would make you blush?”.

 BWM 25/100 – Stop being an a$$hole!
BWM 25/100 – Stop being an a$$hole!

Let’s just get this straight. A kissing smiley is NOT from someone close to me or on Facebook. It’s on a professional network with people I am connected with as business contacts! Btw. this message is harmless. Trust me, there are different other people on those networks who totally seem to get the purpose (professional business) of these networks wrong. I would have not posted this post if it would have happened only once or with only one person. But it happens even after I tell people I am married and behave professionally.

Anyways… I have written this post to just create a tiny bit of awareness. We should stop judging people by their appearance – btw. my weight is something to be discussed all the time as well. We should stop pressure our opinion on people – it’s simply not always relevant. We should accept that women have ambitious goals they want to reach too. And some of us only want to be the best version of ourselves.

Btw working on yourself is f****ing hard!!

Wishes for the future?

Stop hating, stop criticising. Why don’t we rather start supporting and empowering people in our network like we would do with celebs?

 

BWM 19/100 – Everyone is NOT your customer!

BWM – You can't please everybody – Day 19
BWM – You can’t please every customer – Day 19

Everyone is NOT your customer! It’s simply not. Your product and also yourself is not everyone’s cup of tea. And that’s OK.

When you look around we have plenty of choices where to buy stuff. Restaurants for example of coffee shops – there are PLENTY of them out there. And even when you have picked one there is still a lot of variations to pick from. You can pick salads – various ones, pasta – various styles, coffees – various brews…. we live in a world full of options.

The customer has the option

Every customer has the option to decide to go for a deal or not. It’s the same whether you sell food, drinks or something else like consulting services.

Let’s take my example. I am building a professional services company. I offer sales and recruitment training as well as personality assessments within a recruiting and coaching context. It’s a pretty decent product and I also got the qualifications. I worked roughly 10 years in sales – highend sales in different industries. I have a masters degree and understand the scientific and psychological underlying of the assessments. I am certified for the assessment. I worked in recruiting in different countries. And and and … there is a lot of stuff on my plus side.

MyNutShare - that's me
MyNutShare – that’s me, customer ready?

But I have a piercing. I wear a nose ring. A big, beaded, golden one. Some people think it’s cool. Some people don’t care. Some people know that there is more important stuff when doing business with someone then just a look. Some people think it’s inappropriate for the work place. It doesn’t fit a dress code. Or they simply think it’s ugly. That’s just the way it is.  My piercing might be for some people a reason not to do business with me.

Why I know this? Because they tell me.

But guess what – as a business owner you have a choice too

You don’t have to go for every customer. You don’t have to appeal to everyone. You simply don’t. You have a choice. Not everybody is your customer. You won’t by a product that is made for everybody right? You buy a product because you think “hell yeah, this is so me” and not because you think “cool, all the boring neighbours have one of these as well”.

The same “rule” can be used when talking about your branding, your style, yourself. You can either play the game like the most people. Get back into your line and hope not to get noticed. Or you can embrace who you are? The choice is yours.

It’s the same for products, the way you build your business and which story you tell. You simply can’t please everybody. And this shouldn’t be your goal! Create profiles of your target customers and go after them.

In a connected world like ours it’s even possible to cover a niche and rock it. For example if you want to produce shoes made of old teabags from tea that has been sourced sustainably. You probably could do this. There might be a couple of more obstacles in realising this and finding your customers but you probably could do it. What is important is that you sell a solution for a real problem. And that you are clear about WHY you are doing it. “People don’t buy what you do, people buy why you are doing it” as Simon Sinek would say.

And last, we are in it to win it. Aren’t we, female founders? Let’s enjoy the ride and smash our goals and feel good by doing it. #womeninbusinessrock