Our Thinking

Built for it

Why are some things easier to do, and others so hard? Yes, knowledge is important – but this can be improved through training. Yes, attitude is crucial: if you don’t enjoy doing something, there is little intrinsic incentive for doing a great job. And since attitude is infectious, your attitude will impact those around you. But putting knowledge and attitude aside, is there another factor that determines performance?

The answer is yes. (Predictably yes, otherwise why write this blog post?)

The best way to illustrate this factor is by example. If you were asked to describe a football player, how would you describe them? Strong, fast, able to react quickly – and the larger the better. If you were to describe a ballerina, what words come to mind? For me, the words are musical, graceful, and petite.

Both are athletic. But one is built for football, and the other is built for ballet. Just the thought of one doing the other’s job is ridiculous: they would either be crushed, or laughed off the stage. Both know it, and they figured out quite early in their lives where to focus their efforts.

Those things that you find easy to do, are the things that you are built for. If you do things that you aren’t built for, you’ll never distinguish yourself, and you’ll always struggle with productivity. Yes, knowledge and attitude are important, but the big question remains: what are you built for?

This week’s action plan:
Answering the big question is tough (I’ve written a few books on that topic, actually), but consider the connection to your activities in Social Media. This week, change your contributions to the Social Media conversation to take advantage of what you’re built for. If you aren’t great at writing, then hire a writer to wordsmith your ideas. If you are a powerful speaker, then share your knowledge in video format via YouTube. If you are great at getting to the point, then master Twitter. Not only will this be easier, but also more enjoyable.