In some professions, like mine in a chemistry lab, it is easy to go about your day and not have many conversations with people.  You have to take it upon yourself to break that inclination.  You could sit back and let your work speak for you, but the chances are that you will get stuck in that very position for years to come.  You essentially become invisible when promotions come around that increase ones responsibility (and pay).  If you are happy with being “invisible”, you really shouldn’t be.  Not all jobs offer stability these days like they may have offered decades ago.  If a company needs to make job cuts, they are more likely to cut the “invisible” good worker, than they are to cut the good worker who brightens the morale and day of coworkers.    


People actually enjoy talking about themselves and the things that interest them so in the absence of knowing what may interest someone new, start off by getting them to talk about themselves.  You can’t fear the possible rejection of being ignored.  I’ve said, “hi” or “how’s it going?” to people in passing before and been totally ignored.  It’s quite rude for that to happen, but you can’t let something like that stop you from talking to the next person.  Take things one day at a time and just make an effort to try.  You will never know where small gestures like this could lead and the type of people you could encounter.  

I randomly approached an experienced worker (the project manager of a team other than the one I work with) that I don’t usually talk to very much and asked, “So what has made you stay at this company for as long as you have?” That question alone started us on a path of side conversations lasting nearly 25 minutes that eventually led him to saying “I know *insert name of important person* who works in process development.  We went to school together.  If you want, I could introduce you.” That was a completely unexpected outcome for me, but I’m not mad at the direction in which the conversation went.  


When an employer is looking for a new employee and all technical knowledge is the same, it will be the softer skills that could win you the interview and possibly even the job.  Now, take a moment to consider yourself as the employer and you're looking for customers or just website members in general, these same tips are still applicable. Skills such as being friendly are important in the workplace and as an entrepreneur because it shows 1) that you are fluent in interpersonal communication, 2) that you could potentially collaborate well with others, and 3) it helps you build relationships. Having good relationships with your audience is extremely important if they are to trust your personal brand and recommend you to others.   


Now, maybe you are smart in your area of study but you are not the most creative person out there.  That could be okay, even for companies that need innovation to drive their business because if somehow you could demonstrate that you bring out the best in those you work around, that could open doors.  

When you’re at work (whether your own or temporarily someone else's), speaking with your online community, even just around other people, try to motivate and encourage. The more you practice, the better you will become at it. Being that people like to feel good about themselves, if you can convey those previously mentioned traits then you will attract way more people.  Success will follow and people will notice. 

Leave a comment (or short example) on this post if you have used any of these methods to become successful in your own business. 

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