When it comes to finding your signature talents, do not judge yourself against all the other industry experts. That bar is too high and not the intention of this concept.
Let me share a story. When I was working for a regional retail chain in Phoenix, my job included writing and producing the company’s radio and TV commercials. After two years, the senior managers asked if I could write and produce a corporate video to train our field team on a new product line. I said, “Absolutely!” and immediately went back into my office and started hyperventilating. I had no idea how to write and produce a corporate video. Luckily, I had producer friends who walked me through the steps. Within one year, our company’s suppliers started hiring me to write and produce their corporate videos.
I continued producing corporate videos for two more years and was offered a job at a global high-tech company as a worldwide communications manager. Even though I had no experience in high tech, in fact, at that time I barely knew how to program my cell phone, I decided to make the transition from retail to high tech. I went from being a confident, successful marketing professional in the retail industry, to being a tiny, little fish in a humongous ocean of about 90,000 engineering, high-tech fanatics. It was intimidating, to say the least.
I wanted to build my credibility, visibility, and personal brand with my network of peers and senior managers. But how could I do it? I decided to anchor on one of my signature talents – being a corporate video expert.
My producer and director friends would laugh me under the table to hear I was positioning myself as a “video expert”. Of course, it’s only in my mind that I used this term. I never said it out loud, especially since the company had its own corporate video department full of highly qualified producers and directors. But, I knew my videos were pretty good and I could share this knowledge and teach other department managers to create their own internal videos – which is exactly what I did. By bringing attention to one of my signature talents, I became the “go to” person for producing internal videos. I quickly provided value to an extended network of department managers, thus raising my credibility and personal brand within the company.