When a high school kid can sell an app he created one night in his bedroom for millions, or kids in college can start a blog & be flown around the world to photograph & feature social events or products – we are well & truly living in a slashie world. What is a slashie? Well, we are all slashies… In my case, I am Samantha Wills; Creative Director / Designer (Although my instagram states; Creative Director / Designer / Traveller – will explain why, later).
Now, it took me a while to whittle down my self description to that. When I first started out in my own business career, I wanted to do it all! I was Samantha Wills; Jewellery Designer / TV Presenter / Model / Influencer / Entrepreneur ….Slash WTF?
Was I a jewellery designer? Yes.
Was a TV Presenter? Well, I wanted to be. I had done some media training (more on why that ended up helping me in the later years in another post), but no.
Was I a model? Well I used do some modelling, was modeling ever my main career no. Was i making an income from it at that time? Barely. So why did I include it in my self description? Did I think it made me look cool? Like I was achieving more in life? I have no effing idea.
Was I an entrepreneur? No. I ended up being one, but it took me 8 to 9 years to earn that title, I don’t know why I thought it was smart adding it to my 22 year old title.
This post is to explain why I think it is important to have a clear, concise message about what you do….
You may think (like young me did) that adding a slew of titles to your description makes you look like you have many strings to your bow – But I believe it sends the opposite message, and makes you seem like you have either not a lot of focus, or if you do ALL of the things in your profile, you possibly are a Jack of all trades, master of none. The third thing, you MAY be all those things, and you might be good at all of them (yay you!) , but if they do not relate to each, or you are not yet well known enough that they make sense with you having to be there to explain them – it is a confusing message.
Value is added to your brand (both company and personal brand) by quality. You would be better to select one to two things that are the core of what you do, and that are relative to each other, the things you throw everything you have got at, the thing you want to be known for & can add legitimate value to if you were approached about that title. Additionally, less is more… You may be a Blogger Slash Model Slash DJ Slash Designer Slash Actress Slash Rollerskater – But with every slash, your message gets more & more diluted. Pick, stick, and add value to your message.
Finally, your slashes may differ slightly pending where they are used.
For example, on my Instagram, I am a; Creative Director / Designer / Traveller, because these are the things that I visually publish on my insta… I am a Creative Director for SAMANTHA WILLS & Yellowglen, I am a Designer for SAMANTHA WILLS & I am a Traveller for work & play.
On my SAMANTHA WILLS Pty Ltd letter head, and when sending corporate mail / email, I am Samantha Wills, FOUNDER + CREATIVE DIRECTOR (As I am for this Foundation). When I am just doing YELLOWGLEN communications, I am simply a Creative Director.
Be concise is your description. Add value always. - SWx