Everyone has something they are good at. If that skill is paired with your passion, then you are unstoppable. For the other 98% of us, we are trying to figure that out. Let’s look at the common tools people have and how to make those tools better.
EDUCATION Every one of us have the opportunity to learn. Regardless of your formal schooling ending at High school, College or Graduate level, you can continue to learn. This has been a real focus in my life in 2015. I have gone through two professional development courses and I am working through two others simultaneously. In addition, I have become an avid reader. Year to date, my book list is now 15 read and I am working on three others books that I should finish in the next week. I also have a “library” of 5 or 6 others books ready to read and I have a wish list of 20 books I want to read. I have cranked up my Audio books too. I have listened to 13 different audio books this years (most of them I have listened to at least twice some of them 3 or 4 times). All this education is helping me change my perspective and expand my horizons.
EXPERIENCE A former manager of mine frequently told us “never underestimate the value of your contribution.” That is what your experience does for you. Each experience, good or bad, really helps you build on the next one. Take something from each one and use it to better the next time around. This does not apply to job experience only. I have written blogs in the past about the value of service, philanthropy and serving you community. If you are in the job market or a recent graduate, go find a cause you are passionate about and begin volunteering. This not only make you feel good, but it is invaluable networking and provides multiple opportunities for leadership. ATTITUDE We all have bad days. We all have those moments that can kill our momentum. It is probably my biggest challenge, when the bad offsets the otherwise great day. The education component has really helped me improve my attitude and several people have told me directly that I am a “different person.” And a good different at that. I have a friend and mentor who always seems to help me get my head straight when I feel bad about things. I talk to him 2 or 3 times a week and those conversations are critical to my wellbeing. By contrast, my best friend is the perfect person to help me laugh and talk about things other than my career. I don’t have to be serious, I can just be me. Along with these two, is my wife. A third and completely different perspective. She is the complete opposite of me in many ways, and that is perfect when I need guidance or a second opinion. She simply sees the world differently and as a result, helps me to see it differently.
YOUR IMPACT Many people know my passion for LinkedIn and I have built up a positive reputation for my knowledge and my willingness to share it with others. Just about every one of you reading this is thinking “but Mike, I’m reading this on LinkedIn, I’m already a user, why bring this subject up?” My answer is, because, you (like me) probably fall into that 98% that want to get better, and LinkedIn is THE BEST tool in your toolbox to get better. You can increase your education, you can improve your experience (and learn from the experience of others) and frequently you will find posts to inspire and boost up your attitude. You can do all of that (and more) with LinkedIn.
WHAT’S IN YOUR TOOL BOX? I want to hear from each one of you that reads this. Even if 20 other people share the same tool. Tell me about your favorite tool and how you make it more powerful. And if anyone wants to talk to me one on one about any of these tools and ask additional questions, I am just a mouse click away, I welcome your conversation, thank you.