Today our expert guest is Dorie Clark, a marketing strategy consultant, professional speaker, and author who has been described by the New York Times as an “expert at self-reinvention and helping others make changes in their lives.” Dorie is the author of three books: Entrepreneurial You, Reinventing You, and Stand Out.
Dorie’s journey with reinvention began shortly after college, when she didn’t get into any of the graduate programs she applied to. “That kind of forced my first recalibration, my first reinvention.”
Ultimately, that first “forced recalibration” led Dorie to writing her first book, Reinventing You, which is all about the process of transitioning into the job or career that you want to have, although these same principles can be applied to a personal reinvention, too.
Broadly speaking, Dorie identifies three steps in a professional transition:
- Getting a sense of your current brand. “A big part of reinvention is about your brand; how you are perceived by other people.” What do others think of you?
- Getting clarity on your future destination. Where do you want to be and, more specifically, what is the gap between now and the future? What are the activities that you can do to make that transition?
- Living your brand. Finally, on a day-to-day basis, you’re manifesting your new identity. “The truth is that reinvention isn’t a one time-thing – it’s an ongoing thing because people are constantly forming their opinions of you.”
But you’re unlikely to have a successful reinvention if you don’t learn how to tell your story, or your transition narrative – most people aren’t used to doing this, and as a result, they end up communicating their story poorly.
“I used to do this and now I do that” probably isn’t going to cut it at a job interview, or even as an aspiring entrepreneur trying to convince their family that starting a business is the right move.
This is because there is often a big gap between the past and the future, and if you don’t connect the dots for other people, if you don’t make it really explicit how the thing you did in the past connects to, and adds value to, the thing you’re aiming to do now, other people are going to view it as completely random.
You have to guide and shepard the understanding of your transition.
And after you reinvent yourself, after you make a big career transition, maybe even after you leave corporate life to become an entrepreneur, you will likely run into a new challenge: it’s hard to stand out!
Naturally, this is the main focus of Stand Out: How to Find Your Breakthrough Idea and Build a Following Around It. The top thought leaders, in almost every industry, have capitalized on some unique perspective or knowledge, then inspired others to take action. It’s not enough to just keep your head down and do the hard work.
But how do you get the idea?
- A lot of people assume that they have to come to the table with an idea fully formed, but you don’t start with an idea – “You start with an interest in a subject, or in a question, and you just start mucking around in it.”
- Through that process, and only through that process, you achieve enough in-depth knowledge of the subject to identify where there is an opportunity for you to make a contribution. “Then the path becomes clear.”
Now you have an idea – how do you build a following? There are three steps:
- Build your network – Your internal group of advisors, or your “mentor board of directors.” People who can help you hone, shape, and amplify your ideas.
- Build your audience – This is when you start to share your ideas more publicly.
- Build your community – This is the tipping point where you go from one-way communication, creating content and disseminating it to your audience, to creating a forum where they can connect and talk to each other.
All of this culminates in Dorie’s third book, Entrepreneurial You. “If Reinventing You is about how you transition to the job or career you want, if Stand Out is about how you get recognized as an expert in that field, then Entrepreneurial You is about how you make a living – hopefully a great living – in that field.”
It may seem like, if you’re recognized as an expert in a field, then you should be able to make money in that field… but that’s not necessarily true, and how you go about doing it isn’t necessarily obvious.
You have to learn about how to earn money, and for today’s entrepreneurial world, Dorie advocates embracing the concept of multiple income streams and a portfolio career. This hedges you against risk and allows you to harness new opportunities.
If you want a little guidance along the way, download Dorie’s FREE Entrepreneurial You self-assessment workbook.
The Biggest Helping: Today’s Most Important Takeaway
“If we want to be able to be nimble and flexible in the modern economy, we do need to think about having portfolio careers. The question we need to ask ourselves is how we can create at least one or two side income streams, to hedge against uncertainty and as a way to capture upsides.
“The question I’d have you think about is, ‘What are people already coming to you for?’ … That shows that people are interested in the topic and they view you as an expert, and that is something that you can build on to create a side income stream. That can really hasten your entrepreneurial journey and give you some powerful tools to be able to create a little more freedom and flexibility in your professional life.”
Thank you for joining us on The Daily Helping with Dr. Shuster. Subscribe to the show on iTunes, Stitcher, or Google Play to download more food for the brain, knowledge from the experts, and tools to win at life.
- Learn more at dorieclark.com
- Connect with Dorie: Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn
- Download Dorie’s FREE Entrepreneurial You self-assessment workbook
- Entrepreneurial You by Dorie Clark
- Reinventing You by Dorie Clark
Stand Out by Dorie Clark