Most people can’t sell themselves.

The Best Salespeople, who obliterate their numbers every year, selling products and services – have a hard time developing a personal talk-track.

Accomplished Executives, who are comfortable pitching in boardrooms, convincing multi-nationals to sign on the dotted line — have a hard time in interviews for a new position.

Business Owners, day-in and day-out, have the best location, web-site, media, and business card — have a hard time coming up with a simple process to close the deal.

Why is this? Why is there such a dichotomy between great sales performance and the ability to apply those techniques and tools to ourselves?

In my ongoing series, “Are You A Catalyst?”, today’s focus is knowing how to brag effectively.

Peggy Klaus, author of Brag! The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn WIthout Blowing It, proclaims we tend to tell ourselves myths which ultimately sabotage our actions.

Myths such as:

  • A job well done speaks for itself.
  • Bragging is something you do during performance reviews.
  • Humility gets you noticed.
  • I don’t have to brag, people will do it for me.
  • Good girls don’t brag.
  • And the biggest one — Brag is a four-letter word.

Her main drive is to abolish these myths taught and ingrained into our psyche. One has to un-learn past behaviors (taught to us lovingly by our parents and schools) — to be prepared to brag effectively when it feels comfortable — during appropriate times and places.

Some suggestions from Klaus:

  • Get a plan in place – be prepared with tight talk-tracks to help you brag.
  • Get creative – make what you say engaging and interesting.
  • Become the star player vs. promoting team spirit – take credit when credit is due.
  • Brag through your weak points – acknowledge liabilities and focus on strengths.
  • Make sure your fans get it right – prep them to present your story in the right light.

This book is a keeper — I recommend it to all of my clients when they hit an invisible wall and struggle with self-promotion. Check it out.

What techniques do you use to brag effectively?