Business Suitcases

Ben moved his office back to our house, so I inherited his old imac.  Big digs- lucky me.

And, today I got to Skype on said gigantic computer with the wonderful Kristen Graves.  She’s a singer/songwriter and activist based in Connecticut.  She has a big, beautiful voice– and a lot to say with it.

Today we Skyped about Business Suitcases.

What?

Yes, Business Suitcases.  Your Business Suitcase is all of the stuff that you carry into your artistic or small business endeavor: your past experiences, your mission statement, your weirdnesses.  It’s the stuff that sets you apart from the other people entering similar endeavors; it’s the product that you’re trying to get to an audience or client.

Yes, today Kristen and I talked about her Suitcase.  And, here’s what was exciting: the parts of her Business Suitcase that seem so obviously remarkable to an outside person (me!) felt really commonplace to her; she didn’t necessarily realize how noteworthy they were. Kristen is a vegan with dreadlocks who is organizing a guitar camp on an Indian reservation for at-risk youth.  That’s pretty unique, isn’t it?  Kristen’s songs are full of hopeful honesty, and she doesn’t shy away from talking politics.  That sets her apart.  Kristen is a rocker that scoffs at makeup and expensive wardrobes, and almost always wears a big grin.  She’s down-to-earth and personable.

So…why does this matter? Well, most of us are making work to share with audiences or clients.  And, we need to know who it’s for.  Looking at your Business Suitcase can help you…

:: Figure out who your ideal audience member or client is, and how to better reach out to them.

:: Help you figure out what your biggest strengths are.

:: Assist you in talking about the work you make.

:: Decide if there’s anything missing from your Suitcase.

:: Figure out ways of integrating your past experiences and knowledge into your future plans.  

Point is, you’re inevitably carrying all of this information and experience with you.  And the point is, we all have things that set us apart.  How can your weirdnesses help you?  

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