Why an Overture?
Defining who you are or what you do can be challenging. When people ask, is it better to describe what you spend your day doing, or what you really WANT to be doing? How would you answer the question – “I want people to call me when they want to … “?
A few years ago, I read a book by Simon Sinek called “Start With Why – How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action“, which I found refreshing, eye-opening and inspiring. The principle of the book is that people are drawn to expressions of “Why” someone does something, why they should purchase a product, as opposed to the “How’s” or “What’s” that people usually use to describe who they are or what they do.
As a result of reading the book and in a search to find my own personal “Why” statement, I met a woman named Rachel McPherson at one of Simon’s events. Rachel had a very evident sense of purpose, and a few months ago, posted a video:
Rachel recommended the team that made this video, Overture.me. They had a great concept – everyone needs their own 30 second commercial, and Overture wanted to help the world make it. (Technically that’s not a “Why” statement, though.) I filled out an application and corresponded with Jared, the CEO, via phone and email. Although at the time I wasn’t ready, I recently took advantage of an offer to have my own 30 second video made.
Thinking about your message – who you are, what you want to say, and how you want to be perceived – is the hardest part of the Overture. But, in my particular case, I think about what I say to people all the time. When people say to me “Thank you for helping me, I really appreciate it”, I always respond with a joke “well, don’t call me when your car breaks down, because I can’t help you with that”. (It’s true, I’d just call AAA for you.) So I used that as my jumping off point.
I filled out Overture’s application, which although lengthy, forces you to think about how you present yourself. It’s a challenging exercise, and I found myself falling back into the phrases I use all the time when speaking to people, which has its pluses and minuses – you’ll feel comfortable discussing those phrases on camera because you say them all the time, but you may not be expressing these phrases in the best way.
Here’s a sample:
Q. What makes what you do unique?
A. I specifically work with people who know very little about technology – older people, busy small business owners, and kids. It’s these groups who have the biggest ‘catching up’ to do, and each group has its own specific challenges : older people are stuck in the past and think the old ways are better, small businesses owners are too busy to learn, and kids recognize the value but only know a small piece of the puzzle. I help each one of those groups.
Once you send the answers to these questions, you get an email from Jason Siegel, the Director of Production at Overture. Jason is a part time writer, actor, and an excellent coach. He has a wonderful eye for how things come across as opposed to how they should. If I had money to pay someone to follow me around and be my personal adviser on how I come across on every relationship and interaction I have throughout the day, I’d hire him. (Side point, ff I had money to pay someone for daily haircuts, I’d hire Jess Garbarino-Davies.)
Jason coaches you on how what you say comes across, pointing out that short, brief sentences only using words that are part of your regular vocabulary work best. He also pointed out how much your eyes convey to others, more than anything else. After Jason made me laugh by joking about one of my favorite movies, I felt the difference in how I expressed myself on camera, and I know that was reflected through my eyes.
Overall, it was a wonderful experience. In the week since I’ve had mine, I’m closing in on nearly 200 views. Now all of those people know exactly what I do.
If you want to show the world who you are and what you do in a professional way, an Overture is the way to do it.