When one of my clients turned 35, he was experiencing identity issues. When I said to him, “Who hasn’t?” He said, “What identity issues do you have? You are product publicity, that’s who you are, it is as simple as that!”
His observation was interesting. To him I was product publicity. As a valued client, that’s how he saw me in our context as business friends. Of course, I’d like to think of myself as being more complex than that. In business, however, he was right. In fact, that was 30 years ago. Most importantly, the way he saw me was based on my performance, backed by a well thought-out set of beliefs.
Back in 1976, after ending my partnership with Michael E. Gerber, a brilliant mentor, who went on to publish a dozen or so best-selling business books including “The E-Myth,” I bought a book entitled, “Where do I go from here in my life.” Being extremely well disciplined and committed, I completed the written exercises over seven weeks and produced a “specific, immediate work objective.”
Hand written on a large sheet of paper, it included topics such as Your ultimate life goal, What needs doing, Philosophy of life, and Ideal job specifications. The following is significant:
“Growth of the small businessman and enhancement of free enterprise and competition” has been my life’s work. My client was right, that is who I am. I developed a business model that allows me to work exclusively with small companies utilizing publicity to help them compete with large corporations who have much more money. Publicity, which is “news and information,” is a marketing equalizer. Steve Jobs exemplified that with Apple Computer at Macworld in 1984 and on numerous other product introductions throughout the years.
The skills I have developed, based upon the above world view, commitment to it, and experience as a product publicist and businessman, have allowed me to help many small companies succeed and grow over the past 36 years. I believe our survival in America depends upon the five observations I made on September 21, 1976. Consistency counts in business and in life.
(C) 2013 Steven M. Stroum