speedometer2The assertions keep coming:  I don’t want to be braggy.  I hate talking about myself.  I’m not comfortable blowing my own horn.  I don’t want to be one of those people…you know what I’m talking about.  I can’t stand those guys who….

When I am working with a lawyer on external and internal business development and marketing, such statements are a familiar refrain.*  Contrary to public perception, a lot of lawyers hate self promotion and won’t do it.  They can’t even imagine the concept of appropriate self promotion.

One of the most effective tools to explore this concept is to envision a speedometer.  When I ask, the lawyers usually admit they are at 0 in terms of self promotion.   So then I ask if the lawyer who is always blowing his own horn is at 100, isn’t there some speed between 0 and 100 that they could go without crossing the line?  What would 6o mph look like for them?  What about 30?  Inevitably they start thinking of acceptable, fact based things they can do and say, to relevant people, at relevant times, to start moving the needle.

The funny thing is that even if these attorneys pressed the pedal to the metal, none of them would ever come close to being that dreaded braggart.  We can recalibrate their internal governor but it’s still impossible for them to go 100.  This realization gives them permission to give it a go.

Where are you on the self promotion speedometer and what is your ideal speed for 2017?  If you are ready to push yourself at least a bit more, please contact me.

*This is also a familiar refrain and challenge for lawyers preparing for job interviews.