The marketplace does not care about you, it only cares about what you can offer and how you deliver.
The marketplace is built on perception. Perception is other people’s reality of you. The marketplace perception refers to customers’ awareness, their impressions, and their opinions about your business, products, and brand.
A lot of newbies and career amateurs do not understand this and thus assume a false level of confidence above their competence, values, and influence. Some career professionals also fall into this trap.
No one can lie to themselves. We all know what we are truly worth. Our process and experience define our levels in the field, and our levels define our reward. Why sabotage your growth because you won’t accept your reality? Why ruin a career relationship because you think you are worth more? Your reality is crystal clear to you, you know you are struggling and you need help, but you do not care about what growth offers.
This happens in the growth process…
You will be tested, people will use and dump you. You will see pain, you will think you are not growing because of the many rejections. You will not be paid for most jobs when starting, people will forget you.
But what is the beauty of all this?
You would have grown your competence, you would have fortified your skills, you would know better. You would have a story to tell and the experience you get in that adventure shall be counted.
In 2017, I designed my first website; it was my blog. Before then, I wrote fiction, nonfiction and even got published on some literary websites such as CFwriterz Nigeria which is now Itanile, Tushstories, etc. I got my opinions mentioned on LifeXtra of Dailytrust twice that same 2017. I studied and mastered my craft from 2015 to 2017. I got my first paycheck in that same 2017 for writing for a blog. I was paid 10000 naira for 5 blog posts.
I forged ahead and designed other people’s websites for free. I had my input on a web design project for an NGO for free, I wrote for free, I only asked for testimonials and used that as my paycheck. I marketed the sites I did; I put it up in the face of people. I perfected the other skills I have. I asked people and organisations for the chance to speak publicly on their platforms. Funny enough, they all accepted, but does that means I haven’t faced rejection before? No! I’ve had my proposals rejected and I embraced that as a part of my growth process. I spoke on subjects such as Leadership, Spirituality and Social media.
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I was invited by an Academy to teach web design, I got that deal through a participant in one event I attended as a speaker. I accommodated growth and organised my first physical class on web design in 2018, 14 people attended live. I was happy because people turned up. 14 people was a big deal to me. I did many virtual classes on designs, personal branding, leadership and that increased my audience.
Growth is intentional. It is!
I am a growth and tech expert today, I consult for business organisations as a digital media consultant. I have worked with individuals and business organisations in Africa, Europe, America and Asia. I have results and it is visible.
I founded a digital agency (Promilux.com) and a community (prominenceafrica.com) to spread my message and increase my perception in the marketplace. I brought together skilled people to form a team because I grew.
This is the catch.
I still work for free! I have turned down payment before because I saw something in my relationship with the person. That person introduced me to others who paid me multiple figures in USD and Naira. As an expert, discernment is a necessity. You must have the spirit of discernment.
I’ve worked with people who only want to use me. I could discern through our conversations and activities. I didn’t talk down on them, I didn’t abuse them, I only set a boundary and maintain that boundary.
To the newbies and amateurs, and even to some professionals, understand that growth is a process. Do not assume a false level of confidence above your competence and value. You should forge ahead, get the experience, gather the portfolios, master the skill, your time will come. If you fail to understand this, there is every possibility that you will remain stagnant for many years. It is wisdom to know when to work for free or for a fee.
Test run your expertise or knowledge before demanding a high ticket. You alone understand your reality and you can’t run away from it.
I will talk to you soon.