Saturday, June 20, 2009

What's Your Mindset?

It's an extremely important question because your mindset serves as the foundation from where you operate. It's your guide for how you view the world. It helps you shape your priorities and values, and it drives your actions both personally and professionally.

In a video I posted recently from Toni Louw, Toni explains that as a presentation trainer, he doesn't teach voice modulation, gesturing, making eye contact, etc. Why? Because if you're communicating, you'll do those things naturally. Once presenters care more about their audiences than themselves and truly want to share through communication, they become better communicators. Toni teaches mindset, not bullet points because bullet points are just illustrations of what you should do, mindset is an expression who you should become.

Among the most popular blogs posts are those that offer 10 ways to do this, or five ways to accomplish that. While the tips are often helpful, it's the mindset driving these recommendations that is more important. If the mindset is not evident, challenge the author to offer it.

Most recently, I wrote a post titled, Want To Be A Better PR Professional?, and I offered five recommendations for how to better serve your clients. The five points are admittedly incomplete (as is the case with most such lists), but I hope the core principle is clear. If you want the client to see your value, then be passionate about being valuable. Once you do that, you'll naturally seek ways to do so.

I received some great feedback on this post, not only in the comments, but through e-mail, Twitter, etc. While I took a swipe at APR accreditation, the larger point was to get people thinking about their clients rather than themselves. And they did. I received some wonderful additions to the list such as the importance of listening, the critical role of creativity, and the value of understanding communication disciplines other than PR.

By understanding mindset, you will naturally build on specific recommendations in a manner that will help you improve - not just in the moment - but for the long haul.

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