NOTE: this entry is part of another article: Converting Resolutions to Actions
As a freelancer just getting started, my greatest challenge is establishing sustainable income. And for that to happen, more people need to know I exist. But which people, and under what conditions?
The approach that seems to work for me is building trusting relationships through one-on-one conversation. It’s amazing how many people one can reach through a single contact; I just need to increase the odds of having a good conversations when I’m at my best. So, why not create situations where that’s more likely to happen?
As an introverted geek, this approach is very appealing to me :-)
Be Easy to Meet Get out there and be approachable, in person and on the web. Be easy to contact. Broadcast the vibe you want to attract! And for Pete’s sake, try to smile!
Be Easy to Know Make it easy to have a conversation by volunteering information and experiences about things you’re interested in. When possible, show something. For me, the blog helps a lot by providing a secondary 24-7 “home on the web”…people can get to know me while I’m sleeping :-) Tell stories that tie skills to people, not just things. When something piques the other’s interest, listen. It could be an opportunity to work together, or a good reason to contact someone later.
Represent Myself What you say defines you, so be authentic, be honest, and be real. That’s the way I like to do things in person and on the web, and I expect it in return.
Be a Facilitator When you help others, you also help yourself (when you truly mean it, that is). Don’t forget to follow-through…no one likes a whiffer. Not only will you get to help someone, but you’ll also get to understand that person a little better. And remember: the karmic boomerang never misses in the long run.
Find Good People Keep looking and trying…they’re out there. Milton Glaser has a test to help you determine who the good ones are: Ask yourself if you’re more energized or less energized after spending time with a person. Avoid the ones that drain you…they’re toxic.
Form Learning Alliances People who enjoy sharing knowledge and experience are precisely the people I want to work with. It’s also a good way to mutually evaluate the possibility for future collaboration.