A friend shared a video on Facebook this morning that I found particularly inspiring. Although she shared it in the context of a responsibility that speakers have, the same message applies to authors, to coaches, to artists and to those who stand in a public spotlight sharing their thoughts and ideas with the world, in whatever medium them use.
For some creatives, we get caught up in the process of creating. Passion for our art fulfills and sustains us, and that’s enough.
The problem is, that’s a very self-focused view of what we do.
For other creatives, there’s the ego-boost that comes with having our work recognized, whether through awards or rampant sales.
And once again, it’s a very self-focused view.
That’s not to say that we ignore the business aspects of what we do, because we do need to earn a living in order to keep creating. There’s no two ways about it, unless you’re independently wealthy already.
However, we also have a responsibility. And the success of our business and the reception of our message, no matter what form it takes, can only be assured when we remember who we’re doing it all for.
If I cook a meal that looks delicious, but tastes awful, what have I accomplished?
We need to always remember the experience that we’re giving our audience. They are our customer, whether they’re paying for the experience or not.
It doesn’t matter if, as a speaker, I have an audience of 2 people or 2,000. I have to give the same performance and imbue my delivery with the same energy, because those 2 people deserve my very best.
I don’t care if you’re self-publishing a book, choreographing a dance piece, giving a presentation at work, performing on TV, coaching a new client, or whatever other unique skill and talent you have to share with the world.
If you don’t take that responsibility seriously, you may as well not do it at all. Or at least, don’t try to build a business around it.
If it’s about you, it’s a hobby. If it’s about the person who’s going to experience what you have to offer, you’ve got a business.
Care to see the video that got me all fired up today?