For women who want to create a bold business or career, Suzanne Chadwick’s book offers a practical guide on how to do so.
In Play Big, Brand Bold, Chadwick draws on her own experiences in business to share how women can build a stand-out brand and start stepping up to “play bigger” in their business.
“I talk a lot about practical ways to get what you want, asking for what you want, how to stand out and be unique in your own marketplace, and practical ways to think about how to do that,” she said.
As a business, branding and speaker coach, Chadwick has worked with hundreds of women, from business owners to corporate CEOs, to help them grow in their careers.
Chadwick has interviewed more than 50 women to understand what playing big looks like to them.
“Some of them wanted to have an international, multi-million dollar business while others said if they were playing big, they’d do a Facebook live (video). So, the book shows that playing big looks really different to different people,” she said.
“I also talk about the courage to play big. What does it take to be practical in the way that you do it, but you’re choosing every day to show up and do things that are uncomfortable… because it’s actually going to get you what you want?”
The power of asking
One of the key tactics Chadwick has employed in business is simply to ask.
“I’ve asked for a lot of things and… I’ve been fortunate that a lot of people have said yes to what I’ve asked for,” she said.
“For me, it’s never been all or nothing – it’s been ‘I’m going to ask and see’. If I get a ‘no’ or if it doesn’t work out, I just figure something else out. It’s really about being agile in the way that you decide to build something.”
Asking, so you can move towards what you want in your business or career, is a theme that is explored in Chadwick’s book.
It’s about understanding where you want to go in business and asking how you can get there, whether that be asking for guidance, scoping out costs, or evaluating whether your idea is viable.
“It’s changing your mindset around the fact that you can ask for anything, and that it’s up to you to ask. You don’t always have to ask for the big, audacious thing, you can ask for little things as well,” Chadwick said.
‘Dream’ to achieve
Chadwick is a big believer in making anything happen. But she’s realistic and practical in getting there.
“We see that we want to do something but then we talk ourselves out of it because we think it’s not going to make any money, or nobody is going to come to the event, but we do it all on assumption,” she said.
“I encourage women to actually do the research and actually do the work to understand whether it is viable or not.”
Chadwick shares the DREAM approach in her book – an acronym that offers a step-by-step guide to help scope out an idea or project:
D – Dream. Before you start or commit to anything, dream about what it could look like. Think of the ultimate thing you want in your business or career.
R – Research. You’re not committing to anything but you’re finding out things like: how much would it cost? How many people do you need? What else do I need to do to make this happen?
E – Explore. Explore different options. If you’re considering running an event, for example, call different suppliers, venues and speakers to explore available options.
A – Ask. Start asking people if they’re interested in helping you or participating in your project to gauge whether there is interest in it.
M – Make the decision. Based on the research you’ve done, decide to either walk away from it or make it happen.
‘Love what you put out there’
For a lot of women in business, Chadwick said a key thing that stops them from marketing themselves is that they’re either unclear on their message or they don’t love what they’re sharing with others.
“For me, playing big is about making the decision to get uncomfortable every day and do things that I really want to do, and stop standing in my own way. And branding bold is about loving what I put out there,” she said.
“When I market myself, I’m not feeling awkward about it; I love it. But it’s because I love what I’m putting out there – I love the look, the feel, the message.”
Ultimately, Chadwick hopes her book will help women to define what playing big and branding bold means for them, so they can create a business or career they are proud of.
Play Big, Brand Bold by Suzanne Chadwick is available to purchase here.