My graphics designer and entrepreneurial collaborator Rachael introduced me to the concept of superhero powers. She got it from our friend Charlie Gilkey, who probably got it from the Dali Lama.  This concept is really simple:

To be successful in business (and in life), know and use your superhero powers.

For awhile, I had no idea what my superhero powers were.  The concept just brought to mind unsightly visions of men in spandex pants and leggings.  But then it dawned on me – it isn’t about that crap that Hollywood portrays as a superhero.  We’re all superheroes (superheroines?) in our own individual ways.  That’s when I slapped up my superhero power on my homepage:

  • connecting

Yup, that’s it.  It’s a single concept that runs throughout all of my businesses.  I connect travellers with destinations.  I connect tourism businesses with their Ideal Customers.  On my newest site, I connect folk looking for something new with a dream travel job.  It isn’t just virtual connecting either – my talks and workshops on small business and entrepreneurship help those business owners make real-world connections with the lifestyle they want.

It’s pretty powerful when one word or concept can drive everything you do in your business (and life).

Another Example

Simon Rodia’s superpower was vision.

He knew these towers in a Los Angeles suburb would be incredible works of art – and he worked tirelessly his entire life to finish them.  You might think they’re awesome or you might say they’re ugly, but you can’t deny the fact that he certainly found and stayed true to what he felt was his superhero power.

Lady Gaga is another good example about superhero powers, because her superhero power is not singing.  It is stage presence.  She (and no doubt her creative team) knows how to craft not just a music video but a theatrical production, from costumes to make up to little quirky bits that make you go WOW.

Finding Your Superhero Power

Your superhero power is hard to find because it is so bloomin’ obvious.  But it is important to know.  Ask yourself some questions:

  • What tasks or activities make you come alive? This is often more obvious to your friends rather than to you.  Ever notice someone really livens up when the talk about a specific thing (or when a public speaker really hits their stride when getting to a certain piece)?  Your superhero power lives somewhere near there.
  • What are you good at? Tricky one here because sometimes what you’re good at isn’t what you want to do.  But we’re all good at more than one thing.
  • What things have you done for other people?  Do people often come to you for something specific, or do you get thanked for tasks that you consider just part of your day?

Write these things down on a paper.  Draw and doodle around them.  Put it in your pocket, and go for a walk. Somewhere with a view, or a stream –  a place where you can think.   See what comes to mind.

It’s ok if you have more than one (though too many and you’ll start to look like a juggling clown).  It’s ok to not be able to express it in only a single world.  But you have to find it.  It’s worth looking for.

Do you know what your superhero power is?  Leave it here in the comments – or jump in if you aren’t sure and want some help finding it.