The first project for a new client always puts me on edge.
Even though I know I have the skills (having done similar work many times before).
I worry on the weekend and wake at night.
As soon as I start the job, however, my fear dissipates – as for a soldier on a mission that has finally begun.
I’m still surprised when veteran actors admit stage fright on opening nights (or even every night).
Yet now I appreciate how they feel.
Here’s a Bali tale with a business lesson.
We’re dining at Jimbaran Bay (pictured).
A few metres away, roving musicians Take it to the Limit One More Time for enthusiastic backpackers. Lean dogs edge close to tables, but are driven off by restaurant staff.
Suddenly our table is ringed by blue shirts, white teeth and worn instruments.
This is not our thing. Fonnie has no requests and I’m flummoxed – ten years of DJing gone in a second.
The men wait, while my Bintang brain races for a track. Any track. It’s our ten-year wedding anniversary.
I stare at my wife, hoping to unlock some memory. Finally, a name surfaces and I blurt:
‘Every Breath You Take! By ... um ... by ... ummm ... ahhh ... The Police!’
I look at the faces in triumph, but there’s no flicker of recognition.
Do you feel and follow your instincts?
It’s cold, dark and raining. You’re tired, hungry and far from home.
A car pulls up: bright, inviting. The clean-cut driver smiles.
He offers a lift – just into town. Nora Jones croons.
It looks safe, but something in you goes click.
‘No, thank you.’
Having endured the GFC, we may be tempted to take the first ride that comes our way.
But is it in our best interests to do so?
At first blush, gut feelings and cool business decisions seem diametrically opposed.
Until we recall that business revolves around humans – a complex and volatile species.
In the cut-throat world of commerce, could our sixth sense be our most valuable?
Is this all white for you?
Sorry about that title; only had time for a ‘quick once over’.
All the letters are there: the caps and spacing didn’t confuse, did they?
As a copywriter, I sometimes get quick once over requests. I wonder if you do too.
The request has three variations:
1. Just give it 15 minutes.
Some clients assess my work by what I keep, not discard.
Thus, if I spend an hour rendering two pages of crud into one perfect paragraph, they see 50 words and think Bargain!
If I were a surgeon, they’d say:
Look at that jar: it’s tiny! Why bill me for operating on my whole body when you only took out that little, bitty gallstone?!
Us and them.
I was recently asked two excellent blogging questions:
How personal should a business blog be?
In my view, the more personal the better.
People love reading stories.
People love observing other people.
Give them stories about people and you can’t go wrong!
So, if you’re launching a new pfoofer valve, don’t crap on about its features and benefits.
Tell us about Norm, who nearly blew his head off during your exhaustive testing process (but is now enjoying a full recovery).
Readers will be transfixed.
A glance at the web shows common sense sure ain’t common.
So, should you tailor your online content to suit the great unwashed?
Not in my views.
I firmly believe in taking the high road.
Why squabble with starlings, when you can soar with eagles?
Pitch your brand high and your prices will follow.
You’ll have fewer customers, but they’ll be a joy.
Unlike the other crowd.
When I started this post, I thought I’d just cover basic Twitter etiquette (e.g. who to follow, how to list, behaviours to avoid). Then I realised Twitter ‘truths’ were far more important than Twitter ‘tips’. It seems impossible such a simple (and apparently frivolous) application could impart wisdom, but there it is. So here I go.
Genuine humans thrive in Twitter. Fakers, flooders and floggers (though infuriating) do get smacked down in due course. This isn’t obvious to the casual observer, who understandably concludes Twitter is crap.
Yet when you open yourself to a community and reveal true elements of your life and loves, everyone enjoys the exchange.
Being yourself is also easier than maintaining a fake persona. As Mark Twain said: ‘When you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything’.
Its hard to plan out your time when you are a freelancer or small business owner. Everything is your responsibility, and its constantly demanding your attention. Especially in a business like web development where you may be handling projects and tasks on a rotating basis, it can be very difficult to get into a regiment of tasks that help maintain a sense of normalcy from week to week. Here are five tips to help you better plan your time before you spend it.