“What do you do?”
Nothing wrong with the question at all, but I immediately find it irrelevant to the overall make up of who I am. Not to mention what I can accomplish. You should too.
Corporations, heck even smaller companies, all do one thing to you immediately. Place a skill set label on you and immediately draw up what you CANNOT do. You write software? Well, you sure as sh@# can’t talk to customers or perspective clients. You handle customer issues/account problems, no WAY you have enough intellect to know how AWESOME and MAGICAL writing software is. You manage projects? It is physically impossible to understand the sheer VELOCITY of accrual-based accounting. The list goes on and on.
This is no good. Its a fundamental flaw. Lets all agree to throw these perceived limitations out the door.
My reasoning is simple. They’re silly. For example, I understand how to read a balance sheet. I invest my money in the market diligently. I network in the local community. I follow local and national companies to see where and how they are gaining ground in the market. I look at business models to see if there is something there that is interesting or different. Yet by day, all I can do is write software and manage the technical side of a product.
My point here is not to brag at all about what I can do. Not at all. Hell, that’s really hard to do because I’m not all that smart. It’s to start looking at yourself with the ridiculous skill set that you bring to the table. Just because you haven’t sold products doesn’t mean you can’t. Not having tried something is not equal to not being able to do it. STOP FOLLOWING ALONG WITH THESE PERCEIVED LIMITATIONS ON WHAT YOU CAN DO.
The faster we start to dispel these limitations, the quicker we all become more competitive in the marketplace. I want to work with an army of skill-diverse, smart, empowered, employees working WITH me. Not ones with super specific skill set worried more about office politics than the end goals of the business.
So start believing in yourself and your skill set. There is more there than you think.