Am I Underselling Myself?

Debbie Mayo-Smith has a regular column in the Herald. and she offers tips on business performance. She describes herself as an “international speaker and bestselling author”. Additionally, her website boldly states:

If you want significant improvements in business performance from minimum effort or cost, you must get Debbie Mayo-Smith now.

Note the imperative. Have you called her yet? Have you? Have you? Do it! Do it now!

From New York to Borneo, Perth to London, she’s one of the most sought after inspirational, motivational, practical results oriented ‘How-to’ speakers.

Borneo, no less! Perhaps she was there up-skilling the native Dayak people on their telemarketing techniques, and inspiring them to better manage their email in-boxes.

I confess to having never read any of Mayo-Smith’s books, but then maybe that’s the reason why my life is collapsing around my ears. I sit here in the relaxed comfort of my happy existence, casually churning out blogposts for amusement, safe in the knowledge that there will be enough money to feed the kids and pay the mortgage. This complacency is crippling me, when I should be sending you unsolicited text messages or cold-calling you while you are eating dinner.

I am deeply impressed by the ability of Mayo-Smith to talk up her attributes. You may call it hyperbole, or something even less flattering, but it’s a style that works for some. Personally I find such forms of self-promotion as appealing as being scratched to death by a feral cat, and I make it a personal mission to run a mile from anyone in the business world who describes themselves as a “bestselling author”. This style of “positive self-esteem” is what we expect from US evangelists or motivational speakers, and it’s something we don’t see that often in New Zealand unless we’re trapped in a room being sold Amway.

Does it work, and do people buy this sort of thing? I’ve no idea. I can only report on my own feelings about such over-the-top self-promotion.

But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work, and maybe it’s time I “blew my own trumpet” a bit more loudly. You may have noticed a new look to my blog, but I’m also thinking of adding the following under the blog title:

A powerful blogger and radio star who moves in spheres of influence and whose finger is always on the national pulse, Scott’s work will astound and overwhelm you, leaving you gasping for air and needing fresh underwear. Scott knows all the secrets, is never wrong about anything, and is a very handsome and well-dressed man who is so highly-regarded by the ladies that he has to literally run from one sold-out speaking engagement to the next to avoid being mobbed by beautiful women. If they ever get around to writing a sequel to the Bible Scott will be its main character. If you are not reading Scott’s blog or listening to his wisdom on the radio then you are a failure, a profound failure who deserves scorn, if not to be killed outright for the good of humanity, you worthless scum!. You must, must, must, read Scott’s work!

What do you think? Am I still holding too much back?

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