How to Be an Impresario In School and Life
Photo Credit: Breff via Compfight
Today I have another amazing substitute teacher for you guys. Give Paul a warm welcome as he schools us on what it takes be an impresario.
The fear of being laughed at (or being wrong), when raising your hand and answering incorrectly to a question given by your professor, is a fear that has relentlessly manifested and stopped you from knowing your true potential.
I was in class the other day and the professor was beyond furious about the test scores. He spent time reviewing the material and made everyone participate.
There were even times when he went up right to a student’s face, asked them the question, and squeezed the answer out of them. Nine times out of ten, the student’s face would turn bright red, and would answer in a way that sounded more like a question than a statement.
The catch: they were right every time, but yet, they were afraid to pick themselves. They were afraid of getting laughed at. They were afraid of initiating. They were afraid of the possibility of failing (or succeeding).
The constant beat-down in this situation that many of us went through is the fundamental reason why many people are afraid of picking themselves, initiating a project, or simply trying new things.
It’s time to stop being the scared. It’s time to be an impresario.
A life-changing event
In July 2012, Seth Godin held a 3-day seminar for full-time college and graduate students to learn about the connection economy, bootstrapping skills, online marketing, identifying our fears, etc.
The fear of submitting my application and a one-minute short video was beyond me. But during this time, I was aware of my irrational fears. I had, literally, nothing to lose — just like those students who were afraid of answering a question they knew the answer to.
He picked 20 students, and surprisingly, I was one of them.
On one of the days, he talked about being an impresario.
What is an impresario?
In the 18th century, noble families owned theaters. Their problem, however, was that they had no one to fill the theater with. So they would hire an impresario — a connector — to hire a composer, gather costume sets, an orchestra, singers, etc.
The job of the impresario was to be a connector of ideas, organizations, or people to create a greater good.
As a group, we had to come together and write an eBook that was focused on sharing ideas and opportunities for fellow students to be an impresario in their school environment. We each had our own ideas of making our schools a better place, so the eBook is a collection of ideas that you can use.
Oh — and it had to be formatted, written, and shipped in about 80 mins. (You can get it for free.)
How to practice being an impresario
Sometimes, our meager human bodies and minds aren’t enough to be who we want to be; we need that extra boost to “fake it till we make it.” The way Bruce Wayne becomes Batman to battle evil, sometimes we need to take form of an impresario in order for us to move forward and exercise our initiative. To brainstorm an idea, execute it, and ship.
With that being said, being an impresario isn’t a difficult task. It’s a matter of initiative (picking yourself) and seducing the fear to be quiet for just a minute; you are taking a risk that won’t kill you.
Here’s some things you want to look out for:
- Pay attention to patterns.
- Don’t be afraid to reach out and let the person know what your goals are — and be as specific as you can. You may be just the person they have been looking for.
- Look for what’s missing. Are you the right person to start a new club or organization because of your expertise or the network you’ve built? Is there something you want to share?
- Do you have a group of friends interested in a subject, but realized there’s no place for students to express themselves or their ideas in the right environment? There may be others just like you waiting to be picked…
- Who else is interested in creating something, but also doesn’t know where to start? Gather like-minded individuals and make something happen. Combined efforts are usually less daunting than going solo.
- What’s the worst thing that can happen? Failure? That’ll happen plenty of times in your life. So if failing is the worst thing that can happen, what are you really afraid of? What’s stopping you from trying, adapting, and (eventually) succeeding?
- Start now. You don’t need to start with 100 members; start smaller. Start with 2, maybe 5 people. Get those members to spread the word, and next time maybe they’ll bring a friend or two. That’s progress.
Being an impresario…
Helps you build an important skill that is not only useful in a college atmosphere, but also in business and life.
It requires emotional labor and determination. It is about you physically doing the work when no one else will.
Think of it like this: How many people do you know that pick themselves? And how many people do you know that are waiting for something to happen?
The latter, in my personal experience, outweighs the former by a huge margin.
Learning how to connect two ideas, people, or organizations will help you discover new opportunities, build meaningful connections, and practice leadership. You learn to start projects on your own, with the readily available resources, and learn to figure out what works and what doesn’t.
The scariest part of starting this is the notion of failing. Starting a graphic design club where you critique each other’s work and help one another improve, may not kick off immediately. But how do you know that for sure? And how many resources do you really need to start something like this?
The idea is to initiate a project by starting small, learning from the experience, adapting, and giving it another go. Just imagine the possibilities of when you actually succeed and realize the power of connecting the dots.
Just imagine how freeing it was when those students answered the question right. Have you ever felt that?
School is a great place to start making real connections, develop lasting relationships, and to try new projects. To fail, learn, adapt, and try again. But you can also use this mentality for your life.
You can be an impresario in your business or market. You can be responsible for connecting two people, ideas, or organizations to create a greater good. Exercise your initiative and put your fear of failing at bay.
Assume the position of an impresario. Start now. Start today. Do not wait.
This is your time, and the world is your stage. The resources are there, and the people are waiting for something to happen.
Put on a show.
What connections can you make today that will open opportunities tomorrow?
Paul Jun is a writer and a self-published author. His blog, Motivated Mastery, is about reinventing yourself to abandon self-defeat and live up to your true potential. You can grab his new eBook, Reignite, completely for free.
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