Currently, over 10% of American workers are self-employed. Research indicates that the number could triple to one-third of the workforce by 2020. While working for yourself offers many benefits, including a flexible schedule and greater ability to choose who you partner with on projects, it also comes with huge responsibility, including the constant need to promote your yourself and your business.
Dina Behrman is a business mentor and PR specialist who works with women coaches, consultants, and service-based business owners to help them position themselves as experts in their fields and grow their companies. She teaches people how to do their own PR, focusing on helping them to create and sell high-end offers so that they can scale their businesses.
Behrman got her start as a journalist in the UK. After graduating from university, she got a job as an editorial assistant at a local newspaper, working her way up to senior reporter. She then moved in-house at various national women’s magazines, during which time she interviewed celebrities and reported from high-profile red-carpet events including Wimbledon and the Cannes Film Festival. Eventually, she was hired as a commissioning editor on a major national newspaper supplement.
When the newspaper business began to suffer financially and Behrman was made redundant, she transitioned to a career as a full-time freelance journalist. But it proved difficult to earn enough income this way, even though her work was published in most national UK newspapers and magazines. So, she set up a side hustle, offering PR and copywriting services.
“At the beginning, I was playing small, undercharging and hiding instead of using my journalism skills to publicize myself,” Behrman says. After giving birth to her first child, she decided to make a change. She re-launched herself as a publicity coach, putting herself out there fearlessly and positioning herself as an expert. In a short time, she was able to grow her business massively. Today, she helps clients from all over the world get featured in international media and has expanded her offerings to include business coaching.
“When I decided to go all in with the business, things really started to take off,” Behrman says. “Along the way, I’ve been inspired and guided by different business coaches, and I continue to be inspired by women in the online space who are doing things their own way, making great money and creating freedom.”
Here are Behrman’s top five secrets for doing your own PR:
Behrman feels she is living her life purpose. “I get an enormous amount of satisfaction from helping women to make a bigger impact in the world. I think often, women are taught not to shine too brightly and are conditioned not to speak up. So, helping women share their messages in a bigger way – sometimes with tens of thousands and even millions of readers – is hugely rewarding. My clients see tangible results, like getting thousands of new leads in just a few weeks, increasing sales by 200%, acquiring ten new clients in a week, or managing a five-figure launch – all because they are claiming their expert status.”
“A lot of what I do is help people with their mindset,” Behrman explains. “I empower them to truly recognize that they are experts in their fields and claim that status. One of my clients now charges six times more than what she used to because she finally sees the value she can add to her clients’ lives. It’s amazing to witness people having breakthroughs and mindset shifts when I’m working with them. It’s important to me that I help people to realize it doesn’t need to be that way.”
The greatest challenge Behrman faces is coping with the emotional rollercoaster of being self-employed. “There are inevitable ups and downs. That is why it’s so important to surround yourself with people who get it. Napoleon Hill said, ‘No mind is complete by itself. It needs contact and association with other minds to grow and expand.’”
To young people looking to tap into their life purpose, Behrman offers this advice. “Look for work that lights you up, and the money will follow. When I started doing work that I truly loved and working with clients that I really connected with, everything fell into place. If you are a freelancer, do not be scared to raise your rate! When you’re providing a great service, you deserve to be appropriately compensated for it. Charge appropriately, and then you can over-deliver, creating a win-win situation for you both.”
The global COVID-19 pandemic ushered in many structural changes within our society, chief among them being the Great Resignation. A survey conducted by the Pew Research Center found that the main reasons why employees have quit during the pandemic include low pay, a lack of opportunities for advancement and feeling disrespected. The worker shortage has been felt everywhere from the gas station to the airport, and also exposed painful truths about worker inequality.
But the Great Resignation didn’t start with the pandemic. Rather, it’s the continuation of a trend in rising quit rates that began more than a decade ago. There are five factors at play that have contributed toward rising quit rates in the US: retirement, relocation, reconsideration, reshuffling, and reluctance.
“Reshuffling” is the notion that not all workers who quit are leaving the labor market; some are moving among different jobs in the same sector, or even between sectors. And many are quitting for new and better jobs in a phenomenon known as the Great Upgrade.
As people move toward more skilled jobs, they need to ensure they can keep up with expectations. A study by Tableau and Forrester found that 82% of decision-makers expect their employees to have basic data literacy. And organizations that commit to data literacy efforts see wide-ranging benefits like enhanced innovation, greater customer experiences, better decision-making, reduced costs, improved retention, and increased revenues. But how can employers and employees alike ensure that they have the chops to do the job, and do it well?
One step that can help set a company up for success with respect to data literacy programming is to recognize that data proficiency levels depend on an employee’s role (e.g., a sales representative does not need to know as much as a data scientist). While in-house training can be an effective way to cut costs, such programs may not be comprehensive enough. Outsourcing this training to consulting partners, technology vendors, data literacy specialists, and others can supply a wide variety of programming for a variety of different roles and business needs.
Strengthening hard skills is an important way to close the data literacy gap, and the effects benefit more than just companies: becoming more data literate can create upward mobility and career advancements and add 11% to an employee’s salary.
Last year we conducted a survey with ESG about how advanced data skills affect Splunk practitioners’ career prospects. The survey revealed that companies continue to value employees that can use data to answer business questions. Below we’ll outline how data skills positively impact employee compensation, job security, and preparation for a cloud-first future.
Salary has overtaken work/life balance as the top determining factor of job satisfaction. This is unsurprising, as financial security allows employees to save, enjoy leisure activities, plan for the future, and comfortably meet financial obligations like mortgages and rent. Employees that learn how to use analytics tools, ask questions about their data, and get actionable answers from their data will be more valuable to their employers and command higher salaries.
The most frequently reported benefits related to job security in the survey are the respondents’ effectiveness and portable skills. Given that COVID-19 is here to stay, the importance of having in-demand, portable skills in an uncertain world and volatile job market can’t be understated. But the importance of the portability of skills was on the rise before COVID-19. Gone are the days when employees used to pledge loyalty to a company for decades. The International Labor Organization (ILO) estimated that workers between the ages of 18 and 38 changed jobs ten times in 2010. With more widely relevant and recognized skills, workers can Strengthen their employability and adaptability, but the benefits don’t stop there: portable skills contribute to human development by empowering people to make full use of their skills and talents. This is particularly impactful for women, who tend to be employed below their skill level.
COVID-19 has rapidly accelerated digital transformation across the enterprise, and one key driver of digital transformation is the increasing use of cloud services. Data practitioners helped accelerate cloud service adoption as companies found new ways to support the increasing number of remote workers, the continued, exponential growth of data, and finding new channels and ways of engaging with customers during a global pandemic – all skills that go across data vendors and have a longer shelf life than deep data skills related to a single platform. This is especially important as 90% of large organizations are opting for a multi-cloud approach.
The proliferation of data has allowed businesses to become more strategic and Strengthen revenue and operational efficiencies. Learning technical skills (like SPL) can Strengthen a company’s bottom line while simultaneously creating economic gain and advancement for employees. As workers build more portable skills, they not only help themselves and their employers, they also Strengthen labor market efficiency by lowering transaction costs in job search and recruitment, as the ILO study showed. However, it’s important to note that training employees with hard skills is not a panacea; there are many soft skills that are important to help people realize the full value of working with data, like collaboration, curiosity, critical thinking, and storytelling.
About the author: Brittany Coppola is a Product Marketing Manager on the Platform team at Splunk, where she focuses on pricing and the admin experience. She’s passionate about harnessing the power of data to help organizations solve their most pressing problems. Prior to joining Splunk she worked in edtech and fintech.
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