14th December 2015
Progression, in both my personal life and career, has only ever occurred when I have stepped outside the comfort of my safe zone. In yoga, they say that we lovingly place our bodies into positions of discomfort to enable our own growth – and life is pretty much the same.
When I run my monthly PR workshop at the British Library teaching entrepreneurs, personalities and experts how to use PR to raise their profile, I am always struck by the fact that part of my role as a ‘teacher’ is to nurture a sense of confidence in the attendees when I ask them to come to the front of the room to role play pitching themselves to the media.
Through my own colourful journey spanning star studded private jet and Monaco highs, to poor, dark and purposeless lows, one truth has accompanied me regardless of the setting. That one of the biggest factors in how successful we become, is dictated by our own ability to shut up that negative, niggling voice which questions our own ability to achieve. It’s present in all of us, and in those of us who have experienced real challenge in our lives that niggling voice can often be more of a bellow.
There is real power in exposure of the authentic kind. A power in stating ‘this is my story and this is my mission’ whether that mission is championing the right to working flexible hours for working mums, teaching the nation to cook real Indian food or putting Jamaican food on the Brit’s culinary agenda. When we quit hiding behind our business logo and can stand before a room and communicate our ‘why’ that visibility goes beyond the remits of any staid marketing plan.
When my other business, Color blind cards began to be written about in the media I was around 27. I was delighted that the greeting cards were getting great PR, but less enthused that the darker times of my less than aspirational early years, had become available for the public’s consumption. And then with age came confidence, and a new-found respect for all that I am and every experience, which had contributed to that woman. I took ownership of my story and realised the power of revelling in my own visibility and sharing my experiences – glam, glum and otherwise. It transported my businesses and my brand to a new level, differentiated me from my competitors and most importantly, allowed me to impact people in that honest way that we can only do when we allow ourselves to be vulnerable through exposure.
The power of PR means that potential customers, buyers and investors become aware of your existence. The third party endorsement which comes with appearing in a newspaper or magazine or winning an award, has a impact which goes beyond that of advertising. That visibility is a wave to potential partners with synergistic values and an audience just waiting to hear from you. A world of opportunity awaits the visible.
When you take to the ‘stage’ revel in your moment of visibility, don’t rush off. Own your brilliance and every glam, glum moment which lead to your success. In doing so, you’ll empower anyone you come into contact with to do the same – and that is the real power of visibility.
Follow @JessicaHuieMBE on Twitter and see
www.JHPR.co.uk for info on her monthly PR workshops at The British Library