PERSONAL UPDATE: I have recently completed a 40-week business program which many of you will have heard of – the Key Person of Influence Growth Accelerator (or KPI) – and now the real work begins. I found it to be an up and down, crazy journey for many reasons, so here are a few of my thoughts, as much for my own clarity as yours.
- What exactly is a ‘key person of influence’, or KPI? During the program I felt at times that ‘influence’ was misconstrued as ‘exposure’ and the vacuous celebrity factor was creeping into the room. To me, influence of value to the world is quiet and meaningful; steady and solid; deep and trustworthy. I was conflicted at times by that aspect of the program until I spent a very pleasant hour with a friend and her husband after we ran into each other at a movie last weekend. Jane Teresa Anderson is one of the most delightful people I know, and has built an impressive career, on a scientific foundation, as a guide and mentor to thousands of people, and has reached many more thousands through her books, countless television and radio appearances, and hundreds of podcasts she has personally delivered since 2009. Her many avenues of self-generated exposure since the 1990s have enabled her to influence people in a very profound way.
She is a modest, respected and influential leader in her field, with proven results. That’s a true ‘KPI’.
- ‘Entrepreneur’ – that word is used too many times as a smoke screen by people who are struggling to get a business off the ground. Don’t be seduced by the word.
- Even though I have published two national magazines; appeared on radio and television; established a state-wide women’s leadership awards program that is going strong; set up a women’s publishing network; instigated and run very successful programs and events from workshops to mini-expos; published others’ books; co-founded a not-for-profit which sailed in and won a division of the Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race in 2007; and coached many people through career change, I allowed myself to go into that room feeling like a ‘beginner’ because I was expecting something new.
Why do so many women do that – step out of our power in a new situation? Was it because I had closed ‘Honestly Woman’ magazine (above) when the GFC hit, so went into the KPI program feeling that if I revealed that, I was revealing a ‘failure’?
- I found that the program itself is an excellent model for how to take existing information, other people’s experiences, your own knowledge and uniqueness, and re-package into something of value. As Austin Kleon writes in his great little book, it’s okay to ‘steal like an artist’.
The KPI content isn’t new science but it is of great value. Their five steps – pitch, PUBLISH, products, profile, partnerships – get results. I realised I had already implemented many of the processes when I had published my magazines, so I have no reason to baulk at doing them again, and doing them more effectively now.
Implementation, as always, is the key.
- The whole exercise caused some reflection on age and visibility. In a culture where more mature women are starting businesses than any other age group, I sensed a lack of interest at times. (That feeling was echoed by some men as well, interestingly.) You can be assured however that you will find recognition and support within your peer groups during the program, if you participate with a young mind and good attitude.
I learned a lot about myself. There was a moment where I was very challenged, and to my credit I stepped up and delivered.
That may well have been the best moment of all. Perhaps even a KPI moment!