I had a great conversation with Kyle McGuffin about something he’s interested in, and in the process, I learned a few things about Kyle. He’s a loving father who really appreciates his girls. He’s a former national level athlete who represented his whole country in soccer. And he knows a lot of the same people I know.
Kyle’s last name, McGuffin, means something like an object or something that’s used as a major plot trigger. “What’s in the case? You’ve gotta return whatever’s in the case. Oh no! They’ve sent assassins to retrieve the case.” (The case is the McGuffin). He was surprised that I knew what the word meant (I learned it because it was a major favorite method of Alfred Hitchcock).
I’ll be attending New Media Expo in Las Vegas on January 4-6. For years, this has been a great place to meet people and get to know those you’ve only met from afar. I thought I’d lay out my intentions, and also make a few time slots available, if there’s some matching business to be had. Work for you?
My Intentions at the Event
I will be there representing my publishing and media company, Owner, where I serve business professionals by creating your curriculum for the future. I intend to cover interesting businesses doing great work. I intend to meet the kinds of business people who need to reach business professionals like the ones who read Owner.
Did you ever realize that people might not even realize what business you’re in? Sometimes, we miss a post, or a tweet, or we haven’t caught up recently, and then pow, years pass, and we don’t really know what’s what.
When something stinky happens, it’s hard not to feel almost immediately that it’s because you’re somehow bad or not worthy or something like that. Maybe I should speak for myself. When something bad happens to me, I tend to think it’s because I’m not worth it. But I was thinking about something and then it dawned on me. The solution is built into the phrase.
It’s called SELF worth for a reason
When someone acts in a certain way, and we react in a way as if we feel devalued, for unknown reasons, I think we somehow make it about our self-worth. We’re not good enough. I’m not good enough. Clearly. Or else, it would’ve gone a different way.
I just got done talking to friend and coworker, Ron Hood, and he said the most marvelous thing. He said that many times, in a conversation with a client or someone connected to our business, he’ll feel a nice connection with the person. He’ll say, “Oh, I’ll have to add you to my Christmas card list.” But that’s only the beginning.
Ron then sends the card a few days after he tells them this. It could be May. It could be July. And it’s a Christmas card, not a card. It’s whatever it is, a tree or Santa or Jesus. I don’t really know because I’m not on his list. Yet.
Rob Hatch and I are headed to Denver to speak about Small Biz Big Things with our friends from InfusionSoft. We’re talking about The Business of Belonging: How I Built My Media Empire. It’s fun, because not only will we talk about the goals of the organization, but we’ll give a lot of behind-the-scenes information on how we were able to accomplish all we’ve managed to get done.
The way they talk about it on the site is that we were successful because of the tools. We agree. And also, we were successful because we learned how to nurture our community and build relationships that these tools allowed us to really communicate to people in a way that let them know we appreciated their connection, and that we wanted to ensure we were being as helpful as possible. to their goals.
You’ve been told to blog daily, or tweet ten times a day, or make four facebook updates, or whatever you’ve been told. How the hell do I know? But at this point, is it getting you anywhere? Are you getting more business by just throwing whatever you think of up onto the web?
I’m on a train bound for meetings in New York City, with the types of people I rarely meet: investors. They work in an abstract that isn’t my typical play space, and they are tuned for completely different levels of thoughts, of insights, of metrics to prove their point. They play a bigger game.
I’ve been thinking about what else I can do to help you succeed. It’s what I work on the most at Owner magazine. It’s what the 20 other writers are working on, as well.
Have you ever pushed a crosswalk button a thousand times because you’re in a hurry and you’re concerned it “didn’t take?” Today, in Toronto, I pushed a button and it lit up to tell me, “Hey, yes you did indeed push me.” Wow, I thought. A response.
Sometimes, I have email in my inbox from people who have sent me email a few days before. They’re pushing the same button. They’re saying, “I really hope you’ll respond soon.” I’m that black crosswalk button without a light to tell them they’ve been seen.
A Response is Marketing
One of humankind’s greatest needs is to feel wanted. An extension of that is the feeling that we need to be seen. From early childhood, we start this dance of “mama! Mama! Look at what I’m doing!” I feel we never really grow out of this.