Personal Authenticity and Business Belong Together
Traditional thought has led us to believe that business and professionalism means keeping who we are at bay. Thankfully, there has been more of a push through the last few years to bring your whole self to work AND you can still be successful.
If you're a small business owner, you may be wondering if this is true for you. Yes. Being your authentic self within your business helps engage your audience. You can't be all things to all people, but, the right people will be attracted to who you are.
There are so many ways and opinions on how to do this. Where do we begin?
1. Be Transparent.
Sometimes we think that when someone sees us as we are, flaws and all, that it somehow voids our value.
In fact, one could argue that if you own your imperfections, your value increases; it helps create a unique relatability. Sometimes it can even provide value in ways you couldn't predict and can help others in acknowledging their own faults. A good business connection is about accessibility, and transparency makes you approachable.
2. Embrace a Growth Mindset.
Rather than pretending you have it all figured out, sometimes acknowledging that you are growing in certain ways is the best approach. Showing you're learning in different areas and are a continual student is better than coming across as a know-it-all.
Admitting that you still have many ways to learn and improve shows that you are human. Everyone (egotistical narcissists aside) can relate to that. When you are relatable, it builds a better trustworthy connection with those you are doing business with.
3. Align Your Business with Your Personality.
When you run a small business, this one works very well, both for yourself and your customers. Rather than having a business that is a completely opposite expression from who you are, creating a divide, alignment provides clarity. Instead of those two important things in your life clashing, they are working together in harmony to encourage authenticity.