More than one consultant, coach or trusted advisor has looked at me in puzzlement when I ask “What is your Point of View?” Occasionally, I’ll hear “My value proposition is…” After listening closely for a few minutes, I paraphrase what I heard and re-ask my question: “Help me understand your view point regarding your focus. How do you envision your focus helping someone?” Sometimes, they continue looking at me in puzzlement but many times I hear “I’m not unique,” or “No one has ever asked about my Point of View (POV).”
Well, I’m asking. What is your Point of View, your standpoint, about what you like to do, your focus?
Here is a secret to defining your POV. Most POVs are not new, amazing disruptive ideas. Rather POVs are a combination of pre-existing concepts and ideas modified and reframed to form a new approach — your angle. The new approach is your point of view.
Simply, it is your differentiator, your perspective, that helps you stand out in a crowd of consultants, coaches, and trusted advisors. It is what makes you unique. When added to your message, your message becomes all that more powerful. Many people refer to their POV as the map that they follow to help their clients achieve success.
Periodically, I’ve spoken about the POVs of several different successful business people, but let’s look at a business-Netflix. The founders of Netflix and the execution of their POV has disrupted the cable industry, but are there any new concepts or did they just reframe existing concepts? The first disruption was the moving of rented movies from brick and mortar facilities such as Blockbuster, to online. The second disruption occurred as the internet became more stable and prevalent. A subscription service emerged, operating like magazines and newspapers subscriptions. Neither disruption was an invention but the founders creatively reframed current concepts and ideas into a new POV which they have successfully executed.
J. K. Rowling had her own POV as she wrote the Harry Potter series. Like many people, the Harry Potter books grabbed my attention and I was as bad as the next fan waiting for the release of the next book in the series. After the first book, I read an interview where Rowling was asked how she came up with her ideas. She was frank, stating the books she read growing up influenced her writing, her POV. As I read the Harry Potter books, I saw story lines and characters from well know books that I had read. Harry saving Cedric reminded me of Hector and Achilles in Homer’s Illiad and, regrettably, the hours I struggled translating the Iliad from Latin into English. Dumbledorf reminded me of Merlin in the Sword in the Stone and the Leaky Cauldron felt like something from a Shakespeare play, but I could not remember which play. It was not a surprise to hear that Shakespeare’s Macbeth influenced Rowling’s writing. It was Rowling’s creative combination of the concepts and ideas from other writers that lead her to write one of the most popular book series ever, Harry Potter.
To craft your own POV, rely on your creativity. Creativity can’t be forced. Creativity is not a process. It requires observing what is occurring around you, changing your mindset from the what is to what might be, and crafting a new approach based on existing concepts and ideas. Use creativity to leverage your expertise into a POINT OF VIEW for you. Sometimes that POV will be right on target out of the gate; often it needs to be refined; and occasionally it needs to be discarded requiring you to start over. How I present my POV view is continually being refined as I learn more and grow.
If you are struggling to create your POV, find a quite space, set a timer, and write, or better yet, draw a map that shows how your POV will move a person from Point A to Point B. For more on POV and this quick exercise, check out this YouTube video on Point of View
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Hi, I’m Laura (Dallas) Burford. I help business professionals who are building and growing their consulting business achieve consulting success. I do this because I’ve watched too many people struggle becoming frustrated resulting in eventually giving up.
How I do it — my Point of View — is with the help of a simple and easy to follow framework known as The Consultancy Model© and an online program known as Consulting: A Holistic View found on Laura’s Consulting Guide.