I Suck At Art

What, you are wondering, compelled me to announce to the world I lack proficiency in art? Why am I telling you that I can’t draw? The self-portrait I painted in college (yes, I took an art class) looks like something a 5-year-old did while taking acid and flinging paint. I haven’t improved much over the years. But why am I telling you?

I’m telling you because you need to do the same thing. You need to think about your weaknesses. No, I don’t mean your inability to step away from the candy bowl. I mean the areas in business which are not your strengths. It’s a critical step to becoming a better business person and probably to being a better human being too.

Bad managers think they know it all.  They can read the data better than the person breaking it out.  They can write better than the chief copywriter and design better than an art director.  Their marketing campaigns are brilliant and they know everything there is to know about social media.  You might have worked for that guy.  The problem is that inevitably they miss something because they refuse to admit they have a blind spot in their skill set.  They don’t ask questions – they just give you answers.

Great managers know their weaknesses and hire accordingly.  Even those of us who are on our own need to do that.  Sure, I can build you a website but it will take me a long time and it won’t be as good as when I bring in someone who excels at it.  While I know what works from a user experience perspective in digital you don’t want me doing artwork to bring it to life.  This is why you hire someone like me (OK, hopefully me!)  in the first place – to work with you in areas where I’m more expert than you and to bring in resources that will compensate for the weaknesses in your business.

So I suck at art.  You may be Michelangelo but you probably suck at something else that’s important to your business.  What are you doing to patch that hole?

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Filed under Reality checks, Thinking Aloud

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