Climbing Walls

Climbing Walls - image for article by Greg Alder

From the moment I saw the illustration above, I knew I wanted to use it. It now graces my website, social media pages, business cards and videos.

Those of you who know me know that I’m a writer by craft. And yet here I am using an image without any words to promote my business.

If you receive a business card from me, you will see that there’s nothing on it to describe what GregAlderCo does.

Or is there?

One side of the business card is devoted to this illustration.

It’s interesting to note people’s reactions when they look at it. Occasionally, someone will ask what it means. In every case, before I get a chance to explain, they work it out themselves.

It’s about overcoming barriers, isn’t it?

It’s about making things possible.

It’s about seeing what lies beyond.

It’s about finding simple solutions.

In most cases, people get it straight away. They comprehend the benefit of what I do – even if they haven’t yet learnt how I go about delivering that benefit.

So whilst there are no words describing what GregAlderCo does, there’s an image that communicates the benefit.

The problem with most business cards, most websites and most presentations is that they focus on the function and the process, not on the outcome.

When someone asks,

What do you do?

we answer with our job description.

If you ask me what I do, I will likely answer

I ignite inner creativity.

When I do, I am invariably asked a follow-up question.

So how do you do that?

And this gives me a chance to elaborate on how I go about igniting inner creativity.

I show individuals and businesses how to unleash the dormant creative genius that lies in every one of us. I show them how to use this creativity to solve unsolved business problems, see unseen opportunities and put themselves in a better position.

I don’t know a person or business that doesn’t have problems.

I don’t know a person or business that wouldn’t want to see new opportunities.

I don’t know a person or business that doesn’t want to be somewhere better.

The thing is that most of us are embarrassed to answer a question about what we do with anything other than a statement of our profession. We’re afraid of coming across as wankers.

Here’s why it’s worthwhile overcoming that fear. Get your first response right and people are impelled to ask more, to want to understand what you mean and how you do it.

Answer with your profession or position and most people stop right there. They figure they already understand what an accountant or colorectal surgeon or wheat farmer does. No elaboration necessary. So you have missed an opportunity to talk about the benefits of your financial or surgical or farming skills.

Creativity is my industry, my profession, my craft. I apply it in many different situations to help clients in many different sectors.

My passion is showing clients the value of creativity – in overcoming obstacles and revealing opportunities.

Think about who benefits from what you do and how they benefit. Build your story around this benefit, then get comfortable talking about it.

The discomfort of talking about your benefits is your brick wall. Place a ladder against that wall. Climb over it.

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