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I’ll say it again, readers are leaders. And although I am not the one who originated that exact phrase, I tend to live by it. So among my many resources of literature, I most days start with some daily devotional. A few weeks back, I came across this gem.
How can you expect someone else to see your value when you don’t value yourself?
For years the mobile DJ industry has been struggling with how to get the public to understand our value. And I think it comes down to not valuing ourselves enough. Our potential clients can perceive that, thus they doubt our worth. So we doubt our worth, and so do they. What a conundrum that is. I think that if we can fix the first part, then the latter will happen by its self.
Over the years, I have read many articles about valuing our business. I have been too many seminars that talk about how to show your business value to client so you can set yourself apart from your competition. But few of them hit the target: if you don’t think you are worth XXX amount, then you won’t get it.
For many years I worked for a large mobile company, and the thing I struggled with the most was selling talent other than myself. When I first got there, I didn’t know the talent, so it was relatively easy. But then I got to know the staff, and I was mortified of what I was sending out at first. And it wasn’t that they didn’t know how to mix music or make the lights blink correctly. It was the little things that their unspoken actions said that gnawed at my inner being.
Ask anyone who I hired after that what my largest goal of working there was, and they should all say I wasn’t interested in making great DJs, but helping form great people. Because great people make great DJs. Great character is the foundation of great worth. That one is all me.
A few months ago in an article I asked you to inventory your library of books. I specifically pointed out the books that relate to our field of work. I have tons of books that relate to our line of work somehow. But I have even more books that help me discover who I am and how to make small changes that will add to my value. The only problem I have with books are that they are too easy not to follow up on, meaning yes it sounds good when reading it but you never do anything with it afterwards.
I have few suggestions on that. First of all, buy the books outright instead of using the library. The investment is worth it, and then you can highlight and dog ear pages. Which makes it easier to come back to the important stuff. Second form a book group. This year I was involved with a group of DJs who worked our way through “Book Yourself Solid” not only was it a great experience, but it help me take action on what I was reading. And finally never just read a book one time. Take a bit of time in between but come back and reread that book. You might be amazed at the things you have already put to use, and find other things that could work at this time verses before.
Probably the best thing that ever happened was becoming addicted to meth. Yes you read that correctly. No I am not suggesting you should become addicted to drugs. Drug addiction was a key catalyst into my transformation. Without it I would never have become the person I am today. Because when I went into treatment I had to do and inventory about me. I was forced to look at myself from a different perspective. And it helped me change who I am. My wish for everyone I know who has never done an introspective examination of oneself is to do it, and do it now. It added value to me, because it helped me understand what was at my core and then I could change it. To this day I am continually aware of my character faults and always looking for a way to add stock to my core value.
Since becoming clean and sober almost seven years ago, I have been on a mission of improvement. I have attended many workshops outside the DJ world that deal with such things. One of the best was a series called Personal Mastery by Klemmer and Associates. And although some of the methods are unique shall we say the end result was always the growth of my own self worth. I have a better perspective of possibilities because of it today.
My next question for you is how much do you invest into you every year? Is it more than the equipment you buy? Do you have it budgeted into you business plan. I do. And the budgeted number is 7%. Even when the economy has been “tougher,” my prices have gone up and my show numbers are steady. I have heard other DJs pass the blame of down business on the economy and to that I say hogwash. Your business is down because you haven’t invested into you. If you are lowing your prices to get more business that’s because the you value is too low. Maybe the catalyst for you in all this is lower business.
So I would say to those of you seeking a way to grow your value, find your catalyst, read until you’re sick of reading and then read some more. And finally invest into yourself in ways you never thought you would. Find some personal courses and take a week off from the grind and put your whole heart into them. You may find that more than you business value will grow.
Good Luck and Great Shows!