Interview Patty

The Wizard or the Witch?

April 09, 2024

“Would you rather be ‘the man behind the curtain’ or ‘the Wizard’?” he asked me.

My colleague Mike and I were talking about how we promote our companies.

In my view, promotion is the umbrella over marketing and business development, and it’s about how you position your business in the marketplace. This is a critical strategy to attract right-fit clients, generate revenue, and ultimately, position for your exit.

Of course, Mike was referring to the famous Wizard of Oz, and I immediately rejected being either of his archetypes. I want to be Glinda!

Yes, Glinda the Good Witch could have saved Dorothy and her band of misfit heroes a world of trouble if she had clued them into the magic of the ruby slippers, but I think she meant well. I don’t think she was named ‘the good witch’ for nothing.

The point Mike was making was not lost on me though. Did I want to work in the background (behind the curtain) and keep a low profile promoting my company – or did I want to be the visible wizard (the big green head), with more drama and spark?

It was clear to me in that moment that neither was a fit for me.

I can see Glinda, floating in a bubble and landing with a smile. She brings the magic and wisdom to guide brave Dorothy. While Glinda works behind the scenes, she’s there when you need her most.

That is how I’ve been promoting my company since 2006: somewhat behind the scenes, building relationships, speaking to groups, and providing value for my clients. I like to think I ‘bring the magic’ as an advocate for women business owners.

Today’s Question:

Which character from The Wizard of Oz fits you and your approach to promoting your business? Is it Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, the Cowardly Lion, the Wizard, the Wicked Witch, Glinda the Good Witch, a particular Munchkin, or maybe Aunt Em?

But Here’s the Twist
. . .

Your primary role as a business owner is to position your company in the marketplace. Yes, you work with clients, run your company, and handle sales. But unless you intentionally position your company, you are likely to struggle with all the rest.

Your buyers and referral sources need to understand who you are, what you stand for, and how you help your clients solve their challenges. Positioning is equal parts who you are and what you do, explaining how you’re different from other providers and why you’re exemplary.

You and your company have a reputation. Is it the reputation you’ve intentionally created, or did it happen by accident?

Many small businesses struggle to define and differentiate themselves, so the reputation they acquire commonly happens by accident. Others will define you according to the box they know.

For example, you have a full-service accounting firm, but potential buyers repeatedly describe you as a bookkeeping firm. Or you are a systems engineer, but folks think of you as a project manager.

People will define you to your most basic form no matter how you describe yourself. This is when your reputation forms by accident.

-- Excerpt from Patty’s book, Your Hidden Advantage: Unlock the Power to Attract Right-fit Clients and Boost Your Revenue

Now What?

Even as a boutique company, you can build value, promote your business, and position it for your exit. Many women think you can’t sell an expertise-based business, but you can.

Every company I’ve worked with has less than 15 team members, and the owner has built a powerful engine to generate revenue, while building real business value.

At some point, you will exit your business, whether it’s voluntary or not. Are you leaving your life’s work, your impact, and your legacy in the hands of fate?

Intentionally building value and positioning your company for your exit is a solid business strategy. While you are planning your transition, you will make more money, lift the burden of the business from your shoulders, and find balance between work and leisure.

Glinda knew Dorothy was facing a perilous journey – and she understood that it was Dorothy’s journey to experience. Glinda’s elegance and kindness gave Dorothy the courage to navigate the challenges and find her way home.

That same elegant approach can help you chart the course for your own journey.

An Elegant Exit™ requires a new way of thinking, new skills, a simple and elegant design, and an advocate on your side. Contact me to learn more.

Discover your Exit Readiness Index™ with this assessment: http://she-exits.com/

A Note from Patty...

My life’s work is empowering high-achieving women business owners to fine-tune their operations and scale their revenue for strategic growth, creating real business value and emerging exit ready. That value can transform into wealth when they are ready to exit their company - and I believe that wealth in the hands of women elevates society as a whole.

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