The Leadership Insider network is an online community where the most thoughtful and influential people in business contribute answers to timely questions about careers and leadership. Today’s answer to the question “What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned in your career?” is by Peter Thomson, marketing director of SeedInvest.
Blogging. Or in other words, always sharing what I’m learning with others. I’m constantly telling clients and friends to “blog the journey”. Over the years, I’ve found that sharing lessons along the way with other people always pays dividends through increased connections or, at the very least, solidifying your own knowledge.
I started my career as a venture capital lawyer, so I’ve had a fairly unconventional journey into the marketing profession. And at each step along the journey I’ve tried to make the time to take notes on what I’m learning and to share these lessons with other professionals through blogging and public speaking. The value of leaving these little breadcrumbs along the trail wasn’t immediately obvious at first. But over time, my notes on the marketing profession have compounded into dozens of blog posts and a published book on digital marketing. The readers of these pieces have been a consistent source of clients, introductions and even a few friends. In fact, my current role at SeedInvest came about mainly through a series of coincidences that started with someone who read one of my blog posts that I’d written years ago.
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I’ve found that the most interesting writing isn’t over-polished think-pieces about business theory, instead I’ve learned the power of the truism in the newspaper industry that “if it bleeds, it leads”. In business this means that it’s always better to share honest lessons from real world experience. These days my work focuses on helping startups to raise capital online and the lessons that I’m learning about how equity crowdfunding works in practice are hard-won. There are no existing guides to marketing best practices for equity crowdfunding; the whole industry is learning as we go along. This makes every day exciting and it makes the task of sharing the journey that much more worthwhile.
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