EP 302: Connecting With Confidence with Brand Builders Academy Creator Suz Chadwick | What Works

EP 302: Connecting With Confidence with Brand Builders Academy Creator Suz Chadwick

Oct 13, 2020 | Community, Podcast

I started my very first blog back on Xanga in 2003.

I might be your internet grandma.

I used my Xanga blog to share what I was thinking about my senior year of college and process a lot of the reading that I was doing about my field of study, contemporary and postmodern Christian theology.

It was also full of personal updates and the musings of a 21-year-old young woman.

Through my Xanga blog, I got to connect with people online. Some were old friends from high school. Others were strangers from the internet. It was exactly the kind of online social interaction that I loved as a hardcore introvert.

Back when I was writing my Xanga blog, we were blissfully ignorant of the possibility that the companies that we used to facilitate this kind of online social interaction could conspire to use our data and online activity to manipulate us. All most of us saw was the possibility of a connected online community.

I’m Tara McMullin and this is What Works, the show that takes you behind the scenes of how small business owners are building stronger businesses through uncompromising commitment and decisive action.

My little Xanga blog didn’t last more than a year. But when I did find my way back to what was now being called social media, it was like rekindling lost love.

I fell head over heels for sharing my experiences and opinions while meeting new people and cultivating new relationships online.

I happily admit that I spent loads of time on social media connecting with people—and, in the process, connected my way to a large audience and plenty of authority. But then, things started to get a little rocky.

I started playing to the audience instead of connecting with people. The updates and emails I shared were less about connecting and more about broadcasting. I stopped writing for one person at a time and started writing for thousands.

These relationships that felt so natural and genuine started to feel strained. My interactions started to be less about connection and more about transaction.

Over the last few years, I’ve been working on things. I’ve been focused on prioritizing connection again and sharing more naturally again, instead of trying to work the system and grow my audience.

And I like it. I’m back to meeting new people, having loads of side conversations, and sharing without some grand plan.

That leads me to today’s guest.

Suzanne Chadwick is so good at showing up and connecting with people. In fact, she does it every week day morning—a habit we talk about during this conversation.

Suz is a bold branding, business, and speaker coach who helps women create businesses that fit their lifestyle. Her coaching helps female entrepreneurs show up in bold ways and share their messages online and on stages.

I invited Suz onto the show to talk about how she cultivates the confidence and go-getterness that exudes from the way she speaks up. And I expected to have a conversation about going big—and we did—but my big takeaway from this conversation is in how much she prioritizes the small ways she can connect with people, the little things she does to make people feel seen and included.

So I hope you listen for that and consider how that can apply to the way you speak up and show up, too.

Now, let’s find out what works for Suz Chadwick!

Suz Chadwick: I think people want to be part of something, they want to see somebody's journey. And so for me, it's that feedback loop. The more I did it, the more response I got, the more I loved it, the more confident I was with it. And so now it's really just not even something I think about.

Tara McMullin: I started my very first blog back on Xanga in 2003, and I might be your internet grandma. I used my Xanga blog to share what I was thinking about my senior year of college and process a lot of the reading that I was doing about my field of study, contemporary and postmodern Christian theology. And it was also full of personal updates and the musings of a 21-year-old young woman. Through my Xanga blog, I got to connect with people online. Some were old friends from high school, others were strangers from the internet. It was exactly the kind of online social interaction that I loved as a hardcore introvert.

Back when I was writing my Xanga blog, we were blissfully ignorant of the possibility that the companies that we use to facilitate this kind of online social interaction could conspire to use our data and online activity to manipulate us. All most of us saw was the possibility of a connected online community. I'm Tara McMullin, and this is What Works. The show that takes you behind the scenes of how small business owners are building stronger businesses through uncompromising commitment and decisive action.

My little Xanga blog didn't last more than a year. But when I did find my way back to what was now being called social media, it was like rekindling lost love. I fell head over heels for sharing my experiences and opinions while meeting new people and cultivating new relationships online. I happily admit that I spent loads of time on social media connecting with people, and in the process connected my way to a large audience and plenty of authority. But then, things started to get a little rocky.

I started playing to the audience, instead of connecting with people. The updates and emails I shared were less about connecting and more about broadcasting. I stopped writing for one person at a time and started writing for thousands. These relationships that felt so natural and genuine started to feel strained. My interaction started to be less about connection, and more about transaction. Now over the last few years, I've been working on things. I've been focused on prioritizing connection again, and sharing more naturally instead of trying to work the system and grow my audience. And I like it.

I'm back to meeting new people, having loads of side conversations and sharing without some grand plan. That leads me to today's guest. Suzanne Chadwick is so good at showing up and connecting with people. In fact, she does it every weekday morning, a habit that we do talk about during this conversation. Suz is a bold branding business and speaker coach who helps women create businesses that fit their lifestyle. Her coaching helps female entrepreneurs show up in bold ways and share their messages online and on stages.

I invited Suz onto the show to talk about how she cultivates the confidence and go-getterness that exudes from the way she speaks up. And I expected to have a conversation about going big, and we did, but my big takeaway from this conversation is in how much she prioritizes the small ways she can connect with people, the little things she does to make people feel seen and included. So I hope you listen for that and consider how that can apply to the way you speak up and show up too. Now let's find out what works for Suz Chadwick. Suz Chadwick, welcome to What Works. Thank you so much for joining me today.

Suz Chadwick: Oh my gosh, Tara, I'm so excited to be here.

Tara McMullin: I am really excited to have this conversation. As I mentioned to you before we started recording, I needed to get the extrovert voice in here. I needed to talk to somebody who not only speaks up but really shows up in a bold, incredibly confident way. So let's start there. You have a big bold brand. And clearly you have no qualms about showing up for your audience in a big way. But I'm really curious if this is something that has developed over time or if this is something that has always been with you? Can you kind of shed some light on that?

Suz Chadwick: Yeah. I think that this is something that's definitely always been with me, and I am an extrovert, you did come to the right place. Even when I think back now to one of my earliest memories, there's a photo of me with headphones on singing into the jack when I was about five in my grandpa's living room, and they always said I was very opinionated with that stuff when I was little. So I've always been quite confident in just speaking about things. And when I was at school, I was a debater, so that was when I was about 16.

And I had the most incredible debate teacher, Mrs. David. She was this tiny little four-foot Indian woman. And she's to wear her red sari. But she was just like, "Suzanne, you have to make your point. You have to speak clearly. You have to convince the audience that what you're saying is like what they have to believe." So I really learned quite young to really hone in on a message that landed, which when I think back like now that I think back to it, I'm just like, that was such a great training ground for what I do now as a branding consultant and coach. So that was kind of the early days.

And then I went into university level debating as well, which was great. But I mean, from a family background, I grew up in quite a strong Christian home, and my mother was a lecturer on the Bible. And I know that you've got a background as well in theology and things like that. So from as young as I can remember, she was a lecturer, and she used to lecturer in front of like 100, 200 women every single week. So I watched her do that. And so she was a great role model for me as well.

So, for me, I feel like speaking and really standing up and saying what you believe is something that I grew up with, because my parents were quite strong Christians. They were always very much like, we want to share what we believe, this is how we talk about it. They were leaders in the church. So, yeah, it just felt very normal to me, is probably what I'd say.

Tara McMullin: Yeah, I love that. I also love that you shared some of the role models, your parents, your debate teacher that influenced you, because I think often speaking up, showing up is a product of having those role models that we can emulate that we can kind of try out those personalities or try out that way of being. I think if you don't have those kind of role models, that gets a little harder. We'll get into I think a little bit more about that in just a minute.

But I want to ask you first about confidence, because I think there are some people who show up with a big message, who show up with a bold brand or bold presence. And it's almost a front for not having the confidence. And so I'm curious, I mean, I know you are a confident person. And I would love to know, where does that confidence come from? Does that confidence ever falter? What's your relationship with confidence and your ability to speak up and show up in the way that you do?

Suz Chadwick: I think for me, my confidence comes from like, it's that conviction. When I want to go off to something, when I talk about something, especially in my businesses, there's two things. The first thing is I am very much into finding out more. I'm a learner. Even after 10 years in branding, I still read branding books, I still do branding courses, because I love to understand other people's perspectives. And sometimes like there'll be something where I'm like, I've not heard it talked about that way, or explained that way, or I didn't know that, like whatever it might be.

And so for me, I'm constantly learning. So the confidence really comes from being an explorer, and understanding what works as well. So it allows me to speak about things a lot more confidently by understanding more about whatever the topic is. When I am not 100% sure on a topic that I would probably prefer to listen rather than, you know. But I'll ask a lot of questions. But also, the things that I talk about, the things that I do, I'm so passionate about that I get really excited to share it with people. Which is one of the reasons why I love speaking. It's why I love coming on podcast. It's why I've got my own podcasts. Why I write books? Because I'm just like, did you know?

I'm like that kid that like runs in and all of their friends they're like, oh my gosh, did you know about this? And so that's kind of how I speak about the stuff that I love. And that's where my confidence comes from. I think it comes from the excitement of sharing something that I get excited about and that I believe. And I'm so passionate about the psychology of branding and why we buy what we buy. And all of these, I guess, unseen things, that I'm just like, I just want to tell people about it.

Tara McMullin: Yeah. Well, and I think that curiosity and passion is so infectious too, and it's so like connective. When someone shows up with the level of curiosity and exploration and passion and excitement that you just naturally bring into a room, it's like we all want to lean in and hear more, right? And then that just I assume, because this is my experience anyway, that that feeds you. Right? And so it's like this positive feedback loop.

Suz Chadwick: Yeah. And I mean, because I am an extrovert, with live events, or even with online summits so things like that, like if there's more people in the room, I'm feeding off that. Like, I love the bounce. Yeah, the bounce of the energy. And so I think that that's one of the things that does give me confidence is that a lot of time I'm in the moment, and I want to talk about it and I'm excited about it, I want to share. But I think the other thing that's really helped me be confident is, the more that I talk about things, the more I can see what works.

What I mean by that is I went to a storytelling workshop quite a while ago, a few years ago now, and I so wish I really need to find the guy's name. But he said, your story can only be honed when it's witness. And what he meant by that was, it's only when we talk about the things that we talk about that we can actually see what really resonates with our audience. And so we had to do this little exercise where we found somebody else in the room. And so we had three minutes to tell each other our story. And then that person had to give you feedback on what it was about your story that really resonated with them, which was so interesting to do. And then we had to do the exercise again, but we only had one minute.

And so we had to take their feedback on what we had said, and it was like your life's story in three minutes. And just hone in on and talk about the key things that they said really resonated for them. And so through that, I think I've really carried that with me since doing that workshop, actually. I don't know if you've done this. The things that you go, oh my gosh, this message, this podcast, this thing that I'm going to talk about, it's going to go nuts, like people are going to love it. And then you put it out there, and there's crickets. And then something that you just say totally off the cuff is like the next big thing for you.

I have found that in my business, like when I was writing my book last year, I was talking about stepping up as the CEO and everything else that kind of comes with that. And it was just really an off the cuff, or I don't know, it was a Facebook Live or an Instagram Live or something. It's just a conversation I was in. And it resonated so much with my audience, and I got so many messages about it. Because I was basically like, if you step up as the CEO in your business, then you can make decisions that can really help you to be more profitable, be more focused, be more measured in your approach, which means that you can give your employee, meaning you, a pay rise. Like be that person, like be in control.

And so that just went off. And so I ended up adding a chapter to my book on it. And so that was really that feedback loop. And so I think that if you can get into feedback loops with the people that you want to connect with, have an impact with, help, then you can really start to become more confident in that message because you're seeing how it feeds into what you do. And you're seeing how people are responding to it. I don't know whether that's as an extrovert thing. I'm sure it's not. But it's like when you see somebody kind of light up, or they get an aha moment through the things that you teach, say, talk about that, that for me brings massive confidence.

Tara McMullin: Yes. As a hardcore introvert, that is my experience as well. Yes, you have completely described my experience in a bunch of different ways. But yes, so that feedback loop, yes to seeing people's eyes light up. It feeds you and it keeps you going and it shows you what's important about how you're using your voice, the words that you're using, the concepts that you're putting out there. And it does make you so much more confident the next time you go to step up and speak up as well.

So one of the questions that I am often asked about, whether it's speaking up or just showing up with your brand in bigger ways is that people want to know like, is that really you? Or is that like an act that you're putting on? How do you figure out how you want to show up? The way that you're showing up, how do you figure out how you want to speak up the way you're speaking up? So I'd love to know from you and your experience, how much of the way you present yourself online or on stage is strategic, even if it's completely authentic? And how much of it is just you being you and not really thinking about it?

Suz Chadwick: Can I just tell you, like I had to think about this when you asked that question. Because I think that it's probably 60% me just being me, and maybe 40% or 30%, me being quite strategic. I feel like it kind of plays into each other. Like, I know what I want to say, I know what I want my audience, my customers, my followers to feel. So for me, I am obviously really focused on what that brand experience needs to be. But also that brand experience and me crafting that comes from who I am. So it is very authentic. But I'm also very clear on like, how I want to show up and how I want my audience to feel as well.

So for me, I really want to bring the energy, the fun, the excitement, as well. But then I also want to be really clear on the fact that I come from 10 years of brand experience, and I've worked with a lot of like big corporates and small businesses. So the fun and the excitement is there, but the knowledge and the expertise does come from the work that I've done as well. So that to me is quite important. And I know to you, listening to you over the years, as I know that that's something you're ... What did you say you're a recovering expert or? Something like that.

Something when it comes to branding is that my archetype is the sage, which is somebody that is trusted, and somebody who has like experience, knowledge, expertise, but then I'm also the magician. I can give you a link where your listeners can go and see what their archetype is. But the magician is the transformation. So for me, I feel like that actually does reflect me quite well. It's like, I really want to let you know that there's this possibility of magic in the future for you. And there's a possibility of that transformation and you achieving that big vision. But I also want you to know that you can trust me. Like in this journey together, you can trust me.

So I think that that's something that definitely comes through for me, but then also saying that I want to show up as me. So you will see me in my pajamas with a cat filter on Instagram Stories. I joke around and say, I've built my business with a cat filter on. But one of the things that my audience loves is I show up on stories every single morning, or like five mornings out of seven, and just say good morning. I'm like morning, guys. Morning, babes. How are you? And it's because I know that those 500 odd people who watch that story every day or on the other side of that phone, they're people. They're real people.

So I'm just really conscious that when I connect with people online, I see them like that. I'm not really looking at me. I'm looking at them. And so that helps me to show up authentically. I think that if I'm constantly looking at myself, and how I look and what I'm doing and all the rest of it, then it may come across as inauthentic. But because I'm like that little kid that's running into the circle going, Oo my gosh, guys, guess what? I'm totally like that online as well. And so I think something that I really value is that whenever I speak at conferences, or I meet people, they're like, oh my gosh, you're exactly the same in person as you are in real life. And I'm like, yeah, why wouldn't I be.

But then saying that I've met people who are really larger than life online. And then I've met them in person and it's slightly awkward. I just like, I'm a bit disappointed. I don't expect them to be larger than life, but I just thought it would be, I don't know, a little easier or a little bit more fun or a little bit more connected. And it's a bit disappointing, I guess. And so I don't want my followers or people who know me or people who I've connected with to ever feel like that. So I am very much showing up 100% as me whether we meet in person or you see me online.

Tara McMullin: Got it. You'll find out how Suz uses Instagram Stories to connect with her audience every morning. But first a word from our What Works partners? What works is brought to you by the Commitment Blueprint. It's time to start thinking about what you want out of next year. Is year that you launch a new line of business, or streamline and simplify? Is this thing here you get serious about writing a book or go all in on writing for social media. Is this year you build out a team to support your vision, or get back to basics and do it yourself?

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Can we talk a little bit more about what you do with Instagram Stories because it's funny enough in between my last call in this call, which was only a half an hour long, I got a message from a friend saying she was actually not responding to your story. She was responding to someone else's story. But a similar thing. Like just talking in the camera, just saying, hey, this is what I'm doing this is what's up. And she said I wish I could show up like that but every time ... I wish I could just talk to the camera like that. Just talk to my audience like that. But every time I try and do it, I hit delete. I hit Delete. I hit Delete. Tell me how you decided to start showing up on your stories every morning and saying good morning. And tell me how long it took you to get okay with that even if it didn't take you any long time.

Suz Chadwick: Oh my gosh, it feels like such a long time ago now. I mean, I don't even know, like stores has been out for what? Is it a year or two? This is this might sound odd to some people. I don't look back on a story before I post it. And so what I mean by that is the only reason I'll go back on a story is just to write out the captions. But filters will be your best friend. So if you ever feel like ... So whether it's a cat or it's like a beachy filter or whatever it is, that is definitely something that I use all the time because I'm not always wearing makeup and I don't always look amazing but it's not going to stop me from showing up. And you can totally just show up like exactly how you are as well without a filter. Let me just say that.

But I always come into it just thinking like, I just want to say hello, I just want to share this thing. And also I think that the more that you do it like anything you will just become a lot more comfortable with it. Like it's just part of what I do. So even before I jumped on this podcast, I literally did a little screen share or a little story of me on the screen going, I'm so excited. I'm about to get on the podcast. Because my audience love to come on the journey with me. They like getting an insight into my life, they're seeing what's happening.

I always say that my audience helped me to reach a lot of my goals. So for example, I'll say to them, so I've decided to give myself a big target that I want to get on like 50 podcasts this year, like tag anybody who you think I would be great on their podcast, or share any information with me, but we'd love your help with this. And they are all in. I think people want to be part of something, something else, they want to see somebody's journey. And so for me, I just, once again, it's that feedback loop. The more I did it, the more response I got, the more I loved it, the more confident I was with it. And so now, it's really just not even something I think about.

When you think about 15 seconds in the scheme of things, it's like, yeah, I'm just going to show you 15 seconds. I'm going to say morning, guys, it's like, 10:00 to 7:00 and I'm about to get on an interview. I'm so excited about this. And then I'll also tell them about what else I've got on for the day. So I don't story that much on the weekend, like I'll show them what my latest Netflix obsession is. Because not that you want to but I do, do some personal probably 90% business, 10% personal. But the more you show up, the more confident you'll get with it.

And can I just say, if you feel uncomfortable, get a filter on or just take a photo of yourself and write a caption. Like, if you feel uncomfortable doing video initially, just ... I said to one of my clients, and she's a super introvert as well. I said, just flip the camera and show us ... She was a web designer. I'm like, show us some of the web designs that you're doing or post a question somebody asked you and answer it. There's lots of other stuff that you can do. And the more that you start to do it, then take a photo of yourself. It's like baby steps. Yeah.

But it's such a massive opportunity. It's free. It connects hugely with your audience. That's what I've experienced. I just think it also gives people the opportunity to share it as well. So people share a lot of my stories, too, which is so lovely. And so I just think you'll see the benefits of doing it. And hopefully, if you're in that feedback loop, that will be a confidence booster for you.

Tara McMullin: Yeah, I love that. Thank you so much for sharing all of that. Because I know it is something that really trips people up. I mean, I share a fair amount on stories on a regular basis and it still trips me up too. So I think like I'm trying to get myself sort of a project every month, just like we give people in the What Works network and on our theme here on the podcast. And so I think I've just identified what my October project needs to be. Of course, I will already be doing it once this episode comes out. But still like I think maybe this showing up first thing in the morning and saying hello, saying good morning every day, and not thinking of like just doing it, not deleting things even twice.

But just putting it out, there would be a great project for me. And so I really, really appreciate you sharing it. I want to shift gears a little bit. You are a very natural brand builder. You are a very natural speaker. And we've already identified that you also have a lot of confidence. But that doesn't mean you don't make mistakes. We all make mistakes. So I would love to hear about a mistake that you've made kind of "speaking up" for your brand, for your business and how you've done things differently since.

Suz Chadwick: I think for me in the first few years, like 2020 has shaken A lot of us up in a lot of different ways. But I think I really wasn't speaking up about the things that I've supported for a long time. And that have been important to me for a long time. I have kept those separate. So whilst I've been doing that in the background, like we support a charity called One Girl, which are young girls in Sierra Leone and by sponsoring them, they don't have to get married when they're 13 years old. Like they get education. And we've done that for the last four years.

And then there's other things that I'm really passionate about, but I've really not spoken about it in my business at all. And I think that when the Black Lives Matter movement started happening, I think the whole realization that a lot of speaker panels were not really equal or there wasn't diversity, things like that. I don't think I'd really said much before that. And so for me, I feel like that was probably a missed opportunity, something that I probably should have thought about a lot earlier personally. And so I feel like that was a mistake on my part. And so now I am really looking at how I am being a lot more vocal about stuff that I've felt for years and stuff that I've done for years, but being a lot more overt with it.

So we've really embedded some of that into our values and put that on our website. We share a lot more of it on our socials, we have challenging conversations with our communities about some of the stuff that they're doing as well. But we have to be leaving it. And when I say we, it's the real we, like it's me. Yeah, it's just me. I have to be living that, talking about it, showing how I'm doing it within my business, and then engaging in those conversations as well. So that's definitely something that I want to be doing more. I have to be honest, it was something that was difficult for me.

I am a woman of color, which I've probably never really acknowledged before. I live in Australia, we're pretty multicultural society. I've never really experienced racism, myself in my life. But my parents came from South Africa, I was born in South Africa, and came here when I was just two. But my mother has dark skin, my father has white skin, and they grew up in the apartheid system. And so when I even spoke to my mother about it, when Black Lives Matter movement was kind of happening, and obviously still happening, and it will continue for many years to come, I'm sure. She was really fearful of me saying anything.

She was just like, don't say anything, Suz. People will have a go at you. I just don't think that it's an arena. I don't think that the political arena is something you need to get into. And my mother is like, for somebody who's so strong about her beliefs and stuff, it was such a protective child moment. I don't think that's what she really believed, but she was like, my child do not do this kind of thing. And so we had really strong conversations about it that we have to be the voice, we have to be the change, we can't watch other people do it.

If people in South Africa had done that, then the apartheid system never would have ended. So I think that there were a lot of personal challenges that I had within my family. But I just felt that it was something that I needed to be a lot more visible with and talk about and bring a lot of attention to it. Because we have a lot of issues with the Aboriginal community. And what I mean by that with authority and Australians stole their land, and they don't get the same benefits. And there's issues with law and young people, and there's kids like that are 10 years old in prison here. Like it's insane. Like, it's crazy.

So that was something that I really felt I needed to speak up about, and really make sure that my brand was identified as being a brand that stood up for things as well. It's not just about business. We have to really decide now, well, not even now, but we have to make sure that our values are reflected in everything that we do not just compartmentalized to what feels comfortable at the time.

Tara McMullin: Yeah. Well, you bring up this idea of what feels comfortable. And I think that was kind of where I wanted to go with a follow-up, which is, you have such a positive, vibrant life-giving persona and I think obviously genuine personality. I'm curious how you felt taking those initial steps to be more overt about speaking up for these things that you believe in that are hard conversations to talk about. And I wonder also, kind of in the same vein, how has that impacted or did it impact that brightness and vibrancy and positivity that is sort of part of your brand as well? Does that make sense?

Suz Chadwick: Yeah. I mean, I think that I did step back. Is like I was saying when I'm not confident with something I kind of step back and I listen, which I know that I've heard you talk about a lot as well so that I can confidently speak about things. So I didn't really understand a lot of the issues around Aboriginal rights here in Australia, I didn't understand a lot of the history. I've got an Aboriginal woman in one of my groups, and she's like a massive advocate. She does training on it so I was like on some of her training.

Whilst I knew about the history, I didn't know a lot of the details about what's happening right now. It's kind of like all that happened when Australia was establishing itself and all the rest of it, but the issues that are happening now, I really didn't know. So for me, it was really hard. I felt like I wanted to step back. And so I was in that learning phase with that. And then I was in the hard discussions with my family. And then I was trying to work out how I was going to bring this to life in my business. And so I probably did take like a week or two out, where I was just processing and going, okay, I need to educate myself, I need to be okay with the fact that I may not agree with my parents on this. But then I also need to make a decision about what action I'm going to take in the public arena.

And like I said, within my business, we've been supporting some of these things for years, just never talked about it. And so it was just like, it's not just about talking about it going, look what I've done. It's really about talking about it and saying, what does this mean? Like, what else could you do? How else can I help you to be an advocate if you want to be and if this is something that you that we want to talk about? And so I did sort of open up the conversation in one of my groups too, which was my course group. I think a lot of people were just unsure of how to have that conversation. And I'm okay with that, too.

I'm like, you ask questions and say how you're feeling. This is something you want to talk about more, is it not? And there's no judgment if not, like that's something you have to be passionate because you want it to be real and not just lip service as well. So I think that it definitely did take me, sort of I had to take a step back. And I do think that I am a very fun, excitable, out there person. But even in between all of that, I think that there are a lot of serious things that we need to talk about and I'm totally, totally okay with that.

And I do think that because I do sharp as a confident person, and I am a confident person, people do look to me to help them form messages that they believe and that they want to represent but sometimes they don't know how to talk about. And so I'm totally okay with that. I'm okay in the discomfort of things. I also know that sometimes it just takes a little bit of time. I don't think that you can ever land on something immediately. I do think that that message and that understanding and that education evolves over time, as well. So does that answer your question?

Tara McMullin: Absolutely. Thank you. Thank you for reflecting on all of that. I love what you said about that you have the personality that you have. You show up and speak up in the way that you do. What I'm hearing in that is that it's not all one note, right? And it shouldn't be all one note, you're a human being. And there are lots of layers. There are lots of different notes. And so yeah, I just really appreciate all of that reflection and sharing that with us.

As we start to wrap things up here, I want to shift gears one more time, and kind of dig into how speaking up and showing up is always a work in progress. It's something I think that we are all always getting better at and learning new things about. So I'd love to hear about any of the ways or what you're doing right now to challenge yourself to speak up in new ways.

Suz Chadwick: Yeah, absolutely. For me, I definitely want to make sure that the things that I'm talking about are resonating with my audience, have a social conscience around them, that I'm voting with my dollars as well with the businesses that I'm working with and that I'm connecting with. And so I think that that's something that we're seeing a lot more of too. So just becoming a lot more of a value based commercial economy is probably what I would say I'm saying. And so I want to be part of that. I definitely want to be an active person in sort of saying, does this organization reflect my values and what I think is doing well or doing good in the world?

And I think we've sort of seen that happen with Patagonia and The North Face with Facebook ads and all of that. That was obviously in the news. And something that I really loved saying the other day was, there's an ad here in Australia that I was really impressed with. And I don't know, you've got Cadbury's there. Yeah? You've every chocolate, yeah. I'm like, I don't know where they are. But they had an ad years ago, which was the Phil Collins ad, where they had a gorilla playing the drums, which was like I think one of the highest rated ads ever, sort of thing. As far as that's amazing.

There's another chocolate company here in Australia called Darrell Lea. And they've just released an ad, where they've got an orangutan playing the drums in a rain forest. And when I first saw it, I thought, what a ripoff. But then what I saw was at the end, it says, we don't use palm oil in our chocolate anymore. And they were totally brand-jacking the Cadbury's ad from years ago to make a social like brand message. Like to say, we are making a stand, we want to protect the environment, we want to protect Wildlife, et cetera. We're not going to do this anymore, which I just thought was brilliant. And I'm seeing this so much more.

So for me, I'm just kind of like, I want to share those messages. Like I want to amplify businesses and brands that are doing really well, too. There's a digital agency here in Australia called The Digital Picnic, and they just recently came out and their founder, Cherie, she gets asked to speak on panels all the time. And she recently just said, "Unless your speaker panel is diverse, and it has black people of color, et cetera, we are not going to speak on that panel anymore." And I'm just seeing businesses and brands that are literally drawing a line in the sand, and saying, this is who we are, this is how we work, get on board or don't. Like it's up to you.

And so for me, I think that I love seeing that. And it's definitely making me think more about what else could I do? Where am I drawing the line in the sand? What other impacts could I have? Can I think more about what that looks like? And so I do sort of think it's something worth looking at. I always say to my clients that make sure that you're reviewing your business strategy and your brand strategy and your marketing strategy and all that every year like the market evolves, and we've got to move with it. And I really feel like that social conscience needs to be one of those things that we're reviewing with our business.

It's not that separate thing from us, but it's saying, how is my business, when I'm looking at all of these different things that I'm evolving and changing and making better, how are we making this better? How am I making what I'm standing for clearer? And how am I making sure that people understand what I'm about and what is like something I will tolerate or something I won't tolerate? Those sorts of things. So I think for me, when it comes to how I'm looking at speaking up more, I think that's something that I've definitely put alongside all those other things and asking myself, how am I getting better at being a social advocate out there?

Tara McMullin: Awesome. I know. So many people can relate to that. And I think the way that you've laid it out and what you've been inspired by too, it's going to be really helpful for people. So thank you for sharing that. Suz, what's something that you're really excited about right now?

Suz Chadwick: What's something I am excited about? One is coming out of lockdown, Tara, which I shared about. But also I'm doing a lot with women in business around helping them become bolder speakers, and getting more confident with how they speak and how they show up, which is like perfect for the conversation that we're having today. And it's something I used to run workshops a few years ago on it and I haven't done it for a while. And I'm like you know something?, now is the time like podcasts and online summits and running your own webinars and speaking up and having a voice. I'm just like, I'm so passionate about it that I'm like, let's get back into this. Let's do this. So that's something I'm super excited about at the moment.

Tara McMullin: Brilliant. Suz Chadwick, thank you so much for sharing how you speak up and how you show up with a really big, bold, confident presence and all the stuff that's happening underneath of it as well. Thank you so much.

Suz Chadwick: My pleasure. Thanks for having me.

Tara McMullin: It's easy to get caught up in promoting your offers or broadcasting your message. After all, you've got a business around and a livelihood to earn. But Suz made it clear that her top priority is connecting with people, helping people feel seen and included in her story. How would your approach to social media, email marketing or even networking be different if your top priority was connecting with people? What would you do differently if you stopped trying to find the right way to promote your business, started focusing on building relationships? These are the questions that have helped me craft a better approach over the last few years. I hope they can help you too. Find out more about Suzanne Chadwick at suzchadwick.com, and find her podcast, the Brand Builders Lab podcast wherever you listen to What Works.

Next week I'm talking to Jessica Williams from the weekly side hustle newsletter, Jess Picks. We talk about curation as a way to use your voice and share your message. Before you go, if you're ready to dig into what you want out of 2021 and how you can create a plan for stronger leadership and a stronger business next year, join me for the Commitment Blueprint. It's a game changing system for setting goals, shifting your mindset, planning for the future and focusing on what matters most with your day to day work. And it's live over four days, October 19th through 23rd. Go to explore whatworks.com/blueprint to get all the details and register.

What Works is produced by Yellow House Media. Our production coordinator is Shawn McMillan. This episode was edited by Marty Seefeld. Our production assistants are Christian [Rumbek 00:46:41] and Lou Glazer. What Works is recorded in what is now known as Lititz, Pennsylvania, which is on the homeland of the Susquehannock people. The Yellow House is located in northwestern Montana on the homeland of the [Navajo 00:46:54] Nation.

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Host of What Works

Tara is a podcaster, small business community leader, strategist, and speaker. She’s been helping small business owners build stronger businesses for over a decade.  

Tara McMullin, What Works Weekly Newsletter

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