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Look at the most inspiring and successful people in business today, Bill Gates’s first business failed, Richard Branson has dyslexia, Oprah Winfrey was both physically and sexually abused as a child, Tony Robbins was thrown out of home by his mother at the age of 17.
And while these are extreme examples, hardship and adversity are not signs of weakness. They are signs of strength.
Your story is you, your company, your vision and what makes you who you are.
It ties in your journey and your compelling vision for the future, and it’s something that should be recognised and celebrated.
I often hear my clients at the [http://www.mediainstitute.com.au/|Media Institute] say that they don’t feel comfortable divulging personal information to the media or sharing accounts of where they have come from.
But your story is what makes you real and in business that’s worth more than anything.
So here’s why sharing your personal story openly is your biggest asset:
People can connect to you
People crave connection with other people and if there’s anything in your story that is relatable they will like you naturally and want to do business with you.
People connect through human emotion and relate to people who are real and upfront and honest.
The most inspiring people have often been through personal struggle and that’s what makes them so inspirational.
You should be proud of yourself
Your personal story makes you who you are, the good, bad and the ugly.
And you should own your personal story and be proud of it.
I think many people want to sweep the past under a mat and forget about it but its okay to embrace it for the lesson it taught you.
Personal challenges in life make you resilient and give you a hunger to fight for success.
In business that unfaltering determination to overcome any obstacle that might come in your path is a huge strength.
You’ll get better media coverage
From working as a journalist for many years in fast paced newsrooms, news editors across the country love a good human-interest story.
They love stories involving real people going about their everyday lives where emotion is present.
The reason they like these stories so much is because they sell papers, boost ratings and people just generally like reading them because they are interesting and engaging.
This all comes back to connection and because these sorts of stories stir human emotion in others.
There are so many opportunities for media coverage and so many stories out there that are yet to be told.
That’s what motivated me in the first place to help businesses find their voice and their unique media story.
And perhaps you haven’t been through something challenging, it doesn’t matter, what’s important is that your personality shines through in everything that you do, especially when engaging with the media.
So my advice is don’t shy away from your personal story, just realise that your story is one of value and is worth telling.
Jessica Evans is a former journalist, media trainer and publicity expert and founder and managing director of the Media Institute, a publicity agency and media college helping entrepreneurs, startups and businesses promote themselves, without using a PR agency. Call 0425 234 265 for more information.