A Joker Not Up For The Job: How To Make The Business World Take You Seriously

StrategyDriven Practices for Professionals Article
Photo courtesy of Annette Wamser via Wikimedia

Being the joker isn’t always a bad thing. Who doesn’t dream of making everyone laugh at a dinner party? But, there’s no place for jokers in business. In fact, being the laughing stock could cost you custom, respect, and success. So, keep the jokes to yourself, and practice that poker face. If people consider you a serious individual, they’re more likely to put trust in you. They’ll know that you mean business, and won’t let them down. In short; it’ll make a world of difference. We’ve put together a quick-fire list of tips that should make people understand how serious you are.

Credentials

You may have thought you could escape the scrutiny of your credentials when you went it alone, but you’re out of luck. Professionals looking to do business with you will want to know what qualifies you to handle their money. People with qualifications carry more weight. If you turn up with nothing behind you, the chances are that you’ll get laughed off the table. For example, an engineer may not be given much time of day in a business setting. But, if that engineer has an engineering management masters, it’s a different matter. Credentials are also the main thing you can use to set you apart from the competition. For the most part, you will always be fighting others for sales. If you’re more qualified, you’re in a better position to get the deal. And, it’s not only qualifications that boost your credentials. Doing business with the right people is another thing to add to your list. Everyone will take you seriously if you’ve worked with the big boys in the past.

Remember You’re Always on Display

As the face of your business, you are always on display. This applies to your personal life and your business pursuits. You need to be on your best behavior. One wrong comment could come back to bite you later down the line. Get into the habit of censoring yourself before you speak. This even applies to your personal social media accounts. Once people know who you are, you need to stay squeaky clean. It’s also important to note that you must stay professional at business dinners and nights out. The wine may well be flowing, but you can’t afford to get wasted. What associates will take you seriously if they saw you dancing on the table the night before? Keeping a clear head is the best way to avoid a slip-up.

Ruthlessness Works

People who make it big in business are often ruthless individuals. Bear that in mind on your quest to become a serious business figure. If people think they can walk all over you, they’ll do so. You’ll become the joker all over again, and this time it’ll cost you. If you feel someone is taking advantage, make sure you call them out on it. Threaten to pull out of the deal, and watch them come crawling back. You can bet they won’t try the same thing twice.

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