“That’s what I do: I drink and I know things”. One my favourite quotes from my favourite character in Game of Thrones – Tyrion Lannister, played by the brilliant Peter Dinklage.
Yesterday, as I took a short but very bracing walk, it occurred to me that my quote would be very similar: “I think and I know people”.
After 12 years of running my own business, I’ve got the two off to a fine art.
But I always feel under pressure to increase my skill set and prove my ability through qualifications. I don’t have a Level 7 coaching qualification – should I get one (even though I don’t want to be a coach)? I don’t have digital design skills – Should I invest in a course and expensive software if I’m going to stay in business? I’m not an apprenticeship or ILM provider – perhaps I ought to get accredited (even though I’m very rarely asked to provide this)? This feeling of inadequacy was heightened on Friday when I was talking to a freelance trainer just 3 months into her journey. She believed that she needed to have a raft of qualifications in order to be taken seriously, somehow feeling that her experience wasn’t good enough.
Then I remember that 10 years ago I was told that unless I got my PTTLS I wouldn’t be able to work as a trainer. That hasn’t come to pass.
Last week I met someone who specialises in bespoke design, from a digital perspective. What a compliment to my own skill set THAT is!! This week I’m attending a webinar being given by an expert in difficult conversations, and in particular suicide prevention. Mental Health first aid is very much on people’s radars at the moment, and I briefly wondered if I ought to get qualified. I decided not to as I know very many good people who are. Likewise, I know a good many coaches, MBTI and Insights qualified practitioners. Need an expert in Microsoft Office – I know a few! Sales and negotiation? Not my area of expertise, but thankfully I know top people who have years of experience and offer training in this and nothing else.
Increasingly, my role is to properly consult and act as an L&D problem solver. It may be that I can solve a piece of the problem, or fulfil some of the needs directly myself. It may be something that is completely within the ability of the client. It may be that I engage an associate with the necessary skill set, or it may be that I simply pass on the details of someone who can help far better than I can.
After 25 years experience in L&D and 12 years of networking, co-working, building relationships, and actively engaging in the Trainer Talk community, I feel it’s OK for me to say with confidence “I think and I know people” so I’m sure we can tackle your L&D issues together!