By Greg Thompson
Principal of MissingWordSolutions.com
The words “stay in your lane” have gained a pop culture status that now reaches far beyond the phrase’s origin as a highway warning sign. In the journey we take with our professional careers, the ability to identify our strengths, to develop our expertise and to find the lanes that best fit our skill sets and knowledge has become vital in achieving success.
The challenge for communications professionals over the past 30 years has been the addition of new lanes and the expansion of existing ones. When I first started working in newspapers in 1985, we were using paste-up boards and X-Acto knives. Pagination and the explosion of technological advantages offered in electronic age were just around the corner. Who could have imagined the development and growing popularity of podcasts when I stood before a microphone and sound board working my first shift at a radio station in 1982?
Yet, throughout the continual evolution that has seen our world become interconnected across the internet’s wide range of communications platforms, a majority of the guiding principles first learned in collegiate journalism, public relations and marketing classes still apply when developing strong content. Professional experience, combined with the ability to leverage the newest available platforms and tools, can often lead to formulating an effective strategy that can bring all the pieces together.
When I hear the words stay in your lane these days, I think about the importance of playing to my strengths as a communications professional. In my view, finding your niche as a professional communicator in a world filled with options and opportunities should not be primarily defined by your knowledge, your experience and what you do best. To be certain, all of those considerations are significant factors in identifying what will be your best professional lanes. Ultimately, your particular direction and growth as a professional quite often depends upon the ability to meld skills, knowledge and experience while being open to new ideas and possibilities.
Over the years, I’ve had the opportunity to collaborate and connect with many wise and talented people while working in a variety of disciplines within the field of communications. Whether it was journalistic-based work, corporate thought leadership development, public relations, marketing, social media or audio-visual production work, I’ve always valued the opportunity to work with people to take various pieces of the puzzle and assemble a strategic approach that is designed to deliver results.
Since founding MissingWordSolutions.com June of 2016, I have taken an approach that allows me to stay in my lane and play to my strengths and experience as a communicator while utilizing the talents and abilities of those professionals associated with our network. In these first few months, MissingWordSolutions.com has begun to build a track record of success in a variety of areas where we have specific expertise.
With the debut the MissingWordSolutions.com website in the final weeks of 2016, our philosophy remains simple and familiar: Understand the value of staying in your lane. Do what we do best. Play to our skills and experience. Be open to learning new technologies, platforms and approaches. Dedicate ourselves to bringing value to our clients by offering insights, perspectives and expertise in addition to service. And most importantly, make a positive impact through our work by delivering a difference to our clients.
May the adventure continue!