Thursday, July 3, 2014

Top Five Ingredients to Enriching Your Position the Industry

I have been on such a crazy journey of growth these past few months in expanding my brand to its next level, and it amazes me what shifts and changes have occurred to get me where I am.  I look back at the last few years even, and love observing the direction my mind has gone let alone may actual career. It has inspired me to hone in to what some of the key ingredients there are that I have, and other artists have taken on to not only distinguish them, but enrich their career.

I was once one of those people that thought "If I could only meet the right person who realizes my talent, and gives me an opportunity that will set me up for life". I would say I wish it were like that, but knowing what I know now, I am actually pretty happy and confident that what I am going to share with you today will have you be more in control of where you are, as oppose to wishing and hoping and leaving it up to fate.

Key Ingredient #1: Presenting Yourself Confidently
Self worth.  Most will read that phrase and automatically think...I got that. However when given the opportunity to speak or promote yourself, this all too familiar mind chatter talks over any rational thought or deep connected knowing about our actual self worth, and the opportunity passes us like a gust of wind.  It's in that moment that one might start "wishing" they have more confidence. This happens to us all. Yes, even us folk who have a reputable portfolio and a decent client list. But there is amazing news about how to get more of this confidence thing: Confidence is not the state having no fear. Confidence is being afraid, and doing it anyway.  Is that not great news?! Just remember, you are here to give a gift that solves someones problem. Promoting yourself confidently is just letting someone know you are capable of supporting them with their problem.  Knowing your skills  and expertise can help them achieve a desired goal.  If it were that simple, would being confident be that hard?

Key Ingredient #2: Consistently Expanding your Skills and Business Education
When I think about having a continuous outlet for education that supports my business and skill set, I think about the the body needing constant flow of blood to all areas to keep it not only functioning, but healing and growing.  Acupuncture (which I get treated with monthly), is a form of complementary and alternative medicine that stimulates specific pressure points with penetrative needles to bring blood and energy to that point, and also releases blood and energy to relieve pain, stress, and immobility.  I believe educating yourself on the constantly changing and developing techniques in our industry, as well as the best ways you can run you business is like getting acupuncture for your career. If you do the same things you have always done, your work gets static, dated, and honestly you are probably bored to tears and uninspired. No one wants to hire someone who is not excited about their work let alone unable to deliver the most up to date version of it. I myself this year alone took a photography class and two intensive business courses, and because of that I will bring such depth and fluidity to my business, bringing more to my clients and by default more income.

Key Ingredient #3: Do Not Wait for the Perfect Job, Create your Projects
I love when people look at my portfolio, see one of my high production body art shoots and say "I wish (or can't wait until) I can be hired and get paid lots of money to do work like that."  I love it because the irony of it is I probably dropped a couple hundred dollars of my own money to get that project done, and no one paid me a dime to do it.  We all know as makeup artists we need to test to build a portfolio.  But how often while testing do you really push your boundaries in creativity? How often do you create the projects you would like to eventually be sought out for and paid for?  Are you filling your portfolio with what is "supposed to" be in there?  People will hire you based on what it is obvious you are capable of in your portfolio.  Even if you took the purpose of "getting hired" out of the equation, would you be doing it because you love it?  Do you do what you do to make a living?  Or do you do what you love, regardless? Passion projects are important for the soul, and bring an uninhibited rush of creativity because technically, you don't need to answer to a client or a paycheck. That freedom of spirit creates another level of work.  Then by default, clients want a piece of that, and will pay you for your expertise, as well as your talent.  I will never stop testing because of that.

Key Ingredient #4: Cultivate Your Relationships 
As a New Yorker, I experience everything as fast paced.  People often make their most important decisions based on how fast it can be done. Time is money right?  Well no matter how many new apps, gadgets, social networking sites, or jumps in technology we create, none will rush cultivating your relationships.  Developing relationships and taking care of them is not just call sheets, and confirmations.  It starts with a special kind of listening.  Not listening to see what would be the rate you would charge for this concept, and not even listening to see if you can do what the clients wants.  The listening is to see how you can solve their problem, need, or desire.  You listen to see how you can serve. You serve in a way your client gets that they are not only being listened to but heard. You continue to keep your ego in check so the overall vision of the project gets accomplished. Then when the project is complete, you follow up and check in to make sure everything was satisfactory, thank them for working with you and leave the opportunity open to serve them again. I find that if you are truly serving them, even if you are not the one for the job or are booked, you can take it a step further and find someone who can, so you may still be able to solve their problem. Imagine if you did that with all of your relationships? If everyone you were in relationship with felt taken care of like that, or if you could count on someone taking care of you like that? You will always be on top of mind if you approach each relationship with intent to serve.

Key Ingredient #5: ???
The final key ingredient is so huge, and so important, I could write and entire blog post on it just by itself. So that is what I am going to the best for next time.  In the interim, insight without action is pretty pointless so in the upcoming weeks I challenge you to take each of these ingredients in one at a time. Ask yourself  some of the following questions:
  •  How can I present myself so that people get that I am confident I can be the one that solve their problem?
  • Where am I getting stale in my work and what educational opportunity can I embark on to inspire my growth?
  • How can I create a project that's product not only would inspire me, but allow me to think outside the box?
  • How would you like to be "taken care of" in a relationship? How could you with your next client take care of them before, during, and after the job...the way you would want to be taken care of?
See you in two weeks, and don't forget to read our interview with Chris Milone, an artist who definitely knows how to use all 5 ingredients. 

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