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The Secret To Fast-Tracking Success

capecodYou need to be cheeky to do this, and brave. Do it well, and you’ll accelerate towards success. Some won’t like this approach. So be it. It works, and I love it.

I am in Cape Cod tonight, having just finished dinner with Artist Steve. Three years ago he was a failed marketing guy. Unemployed. He spent his time painting seascapes. Someone saw his work, and bought a painting. Steve had an idea. He rented a gallery in the main street. Put up a sign: “Artist Steve- Cape Cod’s Newest Art Sensation” (or something like that). He sent paintings to a friend who had bookshops in Berlin and Amsterdam. “Now exhibiting across Europe” the banner triumphed in the gallery window. Steve sold hundreds of thousands of dollars worth in paintings last year. Sure- he has some talent, and now has ‘fame’ momentum. Most importantly, he did what many successful people have done. He had the nerve to….:

Act Bigger Than You Are.

Talk yourself up. Push the boundaries a little. Don’t lie and cheat. No. But do make realistically aggressive and bold claims about who you are, what you know, what you can do. Don’t be handcuffed by fear and self-doubt. Don’t talk yourself down. Be your own best raving fan.

In my PR days, I’d counsel clients to claim leadership… “… the leading expert in….,”the pre-eminent specialist in the region…”  Claim the high ground, and wait for someone to yell out…”Hang on a minute, that’s not right. I am the leading….” Here’s the rub. They never do. You quickly get accepted and positioned as the leader. Act bigger than you are.

I spoke to Tanya in New York last week. She wanted to change career direction, but only had two out of three skills to be perfect for her desired path. “I’ll need to accept a lower position to break into a role,” she mused. “Rubbish!” I enthused. “Get on-line. Research the area you are weak in. Read articles, Go to a conference. Speak to a couple of experts. Get the low down, the vocab, the vibe. Then go hard, unapologetically, for the biggest role you can get.” Act bigger than you are.

I do it all the time. Here’s an example. I often talk about my ’10,000 weekly subscribers and followers of my blog.’  That’s true. 10,000 is a big number. I’m proud of it. It’s the Sydney Entertainment Centre packed out for the basketball or Coldplay.  It’s impressive. What I don’t tell anyone is that on average about 5,450 actually open the blog every week, and 4,000 of those spend more than 45 seconds reading it. Stlll good numbers. BUT not as impressive as 10,000. That’s why I haven’t told anyone about them, and never will. Act bigger than you are.

Here’s the point. Make realistically aggressive claims about yourself and your abilities… as an individual, for your business, or of past achievements. Don’t lie or cheat. That will trip you up badly. DO make the very best of who you are and what you have. Put your very best foot forward in the way you position yourself and your abilities. Be bold. Be confident. Talk yourself UP, dammit (in the right tone and manner, of course.)

Act bigger than you are. It’s a simple as that. Make it work for you. Please.

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19 Responses to The Secret To Fast-Tracking Success

  1. Andrew April 22, 2015 at 10:06 am #

    Wish I have done it 30 years ago….

    • Chris Savage April 22, 2015 at 11:09 am #

      Never too late, Andrew!

  2. Alida Robinson April 22, 2015 at 10:21 am #

    Ha Ha Chris. Happily I am one of the 4,000 who takes the time to read your blogs. I always find a gem in them. This installment is particularly relevant as I find my self having to re-apply for my job in a total restructure of the business I work in. We have been talking about backing ourselves aggressively and confidently talking up our successes. Knowing that I have really done a fantastic job in the role and why would they replace us with some-one else.

    • Chris Savage April 22, 2015 at 11:09 am #

      Good for you, Alida. GOOD LUCK!!!!! Chris

  3. Alida Robinson April 22, 2015 at 10:23 am #

    Ha Ha Chris. Happily I am one of the 4,000 who takes the time to read your blogs. I always find a gem in them. This installment is particularly relevant as I find my self having to re-apply for my job in a total restructure of the business I work in. We have been talking about backing ourselves aggressively and confidently talking up our successes. Knowing that I have really done a fantastic job in the role why would I be replaced with some-one else. Thanks for the timely confirmation.

  4. Sean April 22, 2015 at 10:33 am #

    Tx Chris, so true. We all have the trump card, so just play it. I will ensure that today I get some one to break your 10,000 mark, claiming that the best advice today can be found at wrestling possums

    • Chris Savage April 22, 2015 at 11:11 am #

      Thanks Sean! Good to hear from you. Chris

  5. Victoria April 22, 2015 at 11:31 am #

    This is a great blog Chris, thank you. All too often I find myself not being brave and not ‘backing myself’… but being almost apologetic that I have skills and experience!

    This is a great reminder that I should be shouting about what I can offer.

    Fabulous read, as always!

    • Chris Savage April 22, 2015 at 11:50 am #

      Thanks Victoria!

  6. eliza April 22, 2015 at 4:08 pm #

    I love this blog. The timing is always perfect

    • Chris Savage April 23, 2015 at 12:56 pm #

      Thanks Eliza!

  7. Robert April 22, 2015 at 6:01 pm #

    Good on you Chris. On the mark as usual. Happy to say I’m usually one of the 4000! 🙂

    • Chris Savage April 23, 2015 at 12:56 pm #

      Thanks Robert.

  8. Brett April 22, 2015 at 6:55 pm #

    great post Chris. You gave me this advice in crafting the launch PR release for Bohemia and we held ‘the bigger than we were’ line for the entire launch year – it really worked externally but also internally about building reality behind the promise. Once you put it out there publicly it’s a great personal driver – hope all is well Chris and we connect again sometime soon – Brett

    • Chris Savage April 23, 2015 at 12:56 pm #

      Thanks Brett. Appreciated. And look what you ended up building! Chris

  9. Jayne Albiston April 25, 2015 at 12:42 pm #

    awesome Chris. Great to hear this! I am in Sydney this week and would love to meet up for that coffee. Email me if you are around. It would be great to meet you. 🙂

  10. Camille Heaney April 29, 2015 at 2:01 pm #

    Hang on, I get that only half your readers might click on the email link and go to the blog page. Hey, that is typically me. The email notification either goes to my junk folder (sorry Chris) or it gets swapped by other incoming items (busy digital life) but is the same for all 10,000 subscribers?

    You wrote: …and 4,000 of those spend more than 45 seconds reading it….
    I ask: why?

    Hugs
    x
    Camille

  11. Bianca May 15, 2015 at 11:20 am #

    I finally got around to reading this one and have to say it’s my new favourite. I’m starting a new job on Monday in a completely new area and am feeling a bit of the “Imposter Syndrome”, but your words have reminded me of the reasons I went for it in the first place and how by acting larger than I was, I was able to achieve my dream job. Thanks Chris!

    • Chris Savage May 19, 2015 at 11:09 am #

      Good to hear, Bianca. Good luck with the new role. Chris

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