After working with freelancers for almost 20 years as editor-in-chief and creative director, what I have come to learn to look for, is not the best writers, photographers, programmers or art-directors, but people who work hard, listen and always do their best.
It doesn’t matter if an art director, writer or photographer has won all the prizes in the world. When you work against though deadlines and with budgets that always are too small you are not necessarily looking for people with the greatest skills, but for ambitious creatives who are great to work with and deliver ‘good enough.’ Skills are of course important, but a matter of fact, with the help of editors and senior creatives not-so-perfect work can be turned into a masterpiece.
Great self-promotion whether you are a seasoned professional, a multinational corporation or a graduating student is not about having the perfect CV, a super creative portfolio or prizewinning adverts. No matter how creative you are, what area of expertise you possess, if you are an employee, freelancer or the owner of a business entity; what always matter in the end is ‘trust’. The trust that people and companies you work with can rely on you delivering on time and what you have promised. The trust that you reply to emails promptly. The trust that you will answer your phone and that you will be there when things go wrong and not only before the moment of the sale.
One would assume that most professionals and companies understand this, but the fact is that way too many don’t. Just think about all those times when you left a message on a company representatives answer machine and no one called back. The time your new expensive smartphone stopped working, and the company refused to fix it blaming you for their lack of product quality (hello Apple), or when the builder who promised that your new bathroom would be finished four weeks ago, still are a month from finalising the job.
Whether you are a seasoned professional, a multinational corporation or a graduating student, great self-promotion is not about designing prizewinning adverts, the perfect CV or the world’s most mind-blowing creative portfolio. What always matter in the end is your track record of satisfied clients, great teamwork and ex-bosses who remembers you with a cheerful smile.
Your best self-promotional asset is you, and the greatest CV in the world spells t r u s t.