Are you playing to your edge? My thoughts from Marie Forleo


Women definitely do it differently if Marie Forleo's presentation for Business Chicks last night in Melbourne is anything to go by. Bubbles, hip hop, attitude ...... and not a single drab business suit in sight. Instead the ballroom was chockfull of colourful, attitudinous and...... curious, fan girl, audience members, not trying to impress each other with how well their careers were doing, but there to learn.

According to the event promo - Marie Forleo is a born-and-raised Jersey girl with nothing more than passion, a laptop, and a dream. She has created a socially conscious digital empire that inspires millions across the globe. Named by Oprah as a thought leader for the next generation, she’s the star of the award-winning show MarieTV, with over 48 million views, and host of The Marie Forleo Podcast, with more than nine million downloads.

She is here to promote her new book Everything is Figureoutable.

And the crowd went wild.

I work in this space, so of course I went to see a global figure in action. Key for me from Marie? Play to your edge.

Here are my four takeaways from the evening whether you are a budding entrepreneur or a busy executive wanting to have an impact on this world.

1. It’s not Rocket Science - Her messages aren't rocket science. You might imagine that with her global brand and such a hugely successful business that her insights or IP would be ...... somehow more rocket sciency. But it's not. In fact, one of her key messages is simplify to amplify. Her IP is mostly about moving beyond fear, societal constraints and mindset. Many of the leaders I know and work with have IP, insights and key messages that are as good, if not better, but we think we need to overcomplicate things in order to be taken seriously. Instead, it’s the conviction of her belief and in her own mission that truly makes the difference. If you're in the ideas business, stop waiting for your ideas to get better, smarter, more rocket sciency. Just get started and your ideas will refine along the way as you test them with your audience.

2. Attitude is Everything - Marie's Jersey chutzpah is pretty awesome - and contagious. I didn't go to the event as a fan, but I really warmed to her as the evening progressed. Once again, this was a great reminder of the research around confidence vs competence. Our society continues to confuse confidence with competence. When you embody confidence and attitude your target audience can't help but follow you. People want to follow a leader who looks and sounds as though they know what they are doing and who is committed to the course. It build trust. Your confidence (or lack there of) will be one of the biggest things that determines your success, whether you like it or not.

3. No More Half Measures - "you doing you fully is the only way that you or your business will thrive."
I can see this with my own business over the last year, and I can see it with my clients. When you are half hearted, hedging your bets, neither in nor out, it shows. You need to commit even it’s only for a moment that you're fully present right here and right now. Got a job interview? Go for it. Got 15 mins with the CEO? Grab those 15 mins with both hands. Got a conference presentation? Go for it and give it your best shot. Fully doesn't necessarily mean OTT, loud, in your face, dogmatically or taking up all the airspace. Instead, fully means you being yourself congruently and confidently, keeping space for others and honouring the journey.

4. Shame is a Drag - Marie mentions shame about former roles or career choices, and the detrimental effect this shame can have on you, just like a heavy weight dragging you down. I know this feeling. I’ve lived with this drag as I’ve covered or apologised for my non-traditional career path for most of my career. Yet right now it's my non-traditional career path that's become my secret weapon and my edge. Shame is the stuff that catches you out and gets in your way. Deal with it and move through it, or turn it into your secret weapon, so you can get on with the business of truly making a difference.

In summary, whether you have a consultancy or aspire to the rarified air of the C-suite, stop hiding, hedging or doing your life half assed. Stop waiting, start creating. Create your own opportunities along with taking advantage of the opportunities that come your way. Life's too short. Just because your ideas seem simple, doesn't make them stupid. Just because your style doesn't fit the standard, doesn't make it wrong. Instead, these things could be your secret weapon. Because you living your life in half measures, apologising for perceived weaknesses, doing things half assed, is what will continue to keep you playing small.

Instead, play to your edge.

Thank you Marie Forleo.

YOUR THOUGHTS? Are you hedging your bets, hiding or playing small? Or have you found your edge? Drop me a note and let me know.

#womenofimpact #LookOutCSuiteHereSheComes #PlaytoYourEdge

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