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Why You Have to Blow Your Own Trumpet

by Lisa Chilvers

posted in Business

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I was having lunch with a good friend (we'll call him Rob) last week. We've known each other for a couple of years and get together every month or so to chat about business and life.
Rob has come a long way in the time I've known him; he really has done a brilliant job of driving his architecture practice to a new level, from humble beginnings in his spare room to having offices in the city centre and employing two staff.
What I love about Rob is his generosity of spirit; he's always ready to help others and is never stinting with his time for anyone who may need his advice and support. But what I think I admire most is his unswerving self-belief. Anyone who knows him will be well-aware that his personality is as big as his physical presence. Is this the key to his success?
When we last met, we were talking about achievement in general and Rob came out with the following
"I'm always talking about how we are the best Architects. I always say how good we are, with confidence and belief. There are two main reasons for this, firstly, it's true and secondly, it's true! It may sound arrogant, but a little arrogance is no bad thing! If you are going to hire a solicitor, you want to know that they are someone you can trust, a heart surgeon, the same. Let's be honest, even if you are going for a haircut, you don't want someone telling you they are "pretty good" as they are hacking away at your lovely locks. No one buys a car because its 'so-so'.
We work hard to make sure we're outstanding. We focus on client experience, we deliver outstanding service and we hire only the best! The thing is - all this doesn't matter if you don't tell people. A lot of about being the best is state of mind. If you act like it and believe it, other people start to believe it too, and soon enough, it's a fact."
Now Rob's attitude isn't something we come across very often. On the whole, we are so very good at being self-depreciating. We play down our talent and skill for fear of being thought big-headed but are we doing ourselves a dis-service in the process? To many, Rob will simply come across as being arrogant, but surely his attitude has got to be better than admitting that you're "OK" at what you do? And if you don't genuinely want to be the best of the best then maybe it's time to ask yourself if you're in the right game. Because running your own business is tough; there's loads of competition out there and if you don't see yourself as being top of the heap then is there really any point?
Surely we must believe, deep-down, that we're the best at what we do? That we're really so much better than everyone else out there who claims to be "the best"? Because if we don't believe in ourselves, how the heck can we expect anyone else to believe in us either?
Maybe it's time to stop being so afraid of what people might think and start shouting about ourselves a bit more. Time to start telling anyone and everyone who will listen that we are awesome and they if they don't work with us they'll be settling for second best?
So if you're not very good at blowing your own trumpet, maybe it's time to take lessons.
About the Author: If you aren't confident in being the best at what you do, how can expect to instill confidence in others? You can't always rely on others to market you; sometimes you have to just go out there and let everyone know that you're outstanding at what you do
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