You Aren’t Seth, Steve, or Scoble

Without further ado, the SmarterBiz unofficial PR rep, Cleveland Brown:

All joking aside, how often in business do you try to imitate someone else? There are a lot of leaders that so many of us try to imitate, whether we’re delivering presentations, talking about marketing, or casting vision in an internal business meeting.

Seth Godin

You are not Seth Godin. You have hair. You can’t even imagine a purple cow. You don’t think about sliced bread that way. You just want a stinkin’ sandwich. You don’t write like Seth, story-tell like Seth, or market like Seth. If you put your forehead on your blog, people would laugh at you. So don’t. Seth is great at being Seth. He thinks differently than all of us. But so do you.

Steve Jobs

You are not Steve Jobs. You don’t even own a black turtleneck. You’ll never be the coolest 65 55 year old on the planet. Not even close. If you had the option to make $1, you’d laugh. Cartoons are for kids. You’d have a real studio. You don’t command an audience like Steve, talk like Steve, or lead like Steve. You couldn’t find your way around a courtroom, much less do battle in one. So don’t try. Steve is great at being Steve. He communicates differently than all of us. But so do you.

Robert Scoble

You are not Robert Scoble. When you think evangelism, you think TBN, not tech. If you wrote a book with “Naked” in the title, it wouldn’t be publishable. You’d write for Slow Company. You don’t blog like Scoble, you don’t tweet like Scoble, and you don’t take awesome pictures like Scoble. Building 43 wouldn’t even have a foundation with you as the architect. So don’t try. Scoble is great at being Scoble. He connects with people differently than all of us. But so do you.

I could go on and on. There’s Biz, Bill, and Brogan too. And who can forget about Guy?

The Point

The examples listed above are just some examples of who you’re not. Myself included. I encourage and challenge you to write down somewhere who you try to imitate…and can’t. Who are you notSometimes, we are so enraptured by the success being done through other people that we forget what can be done by us. Who you are as a leader is determined by who you learn from…but it’s taking that information and conforming it to who you are. Because you’re the best you out there. There is no one who communicates, writes, manages, or thinks like you on the face of the planet.

So go lead like you. And not like those other guys.

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  1. [...] Godin. The weird marketing, purple cow guy that we wrote about here. His blog is consistent, his content unique and insightful, and he’s got a distinct voice in [...]

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