In our industry it seems like everyone has the title "educator" after their name, and while that's all fine and dandy, we think it's important to take a look at someone whom you're seeking professional and creative advice from in a full circle approach.
It's easy to add a few letters after your name (e-d-u-c-a-t-o-r), but what makes you someone worthy of providing advice or value to someone else's business or creative journey? Well, so often we hear people cutting down others saying "They shouldn't be teaching!" or "They shouldn't be putting on a workshop!" or "They shouldn't be selling that template in their shop!"
But let's take a step back. If someone has something to offer, why can't they offer it? If YOU don't find value in it, that doesn't mean SOMEONE ELSE won't find value in it. While we agree that it's important that "educators" know their stuff, it's also okay to learn from someone who doesn't know it all--like, does anyone really know it all? Aren't we all just going off of what we've learned and experienced? So rather than being upset about someone offering a coaching call or mentorship or workshop or eBook--focus on finding the people in the industry that will help shape and grow YOU as an artist, creative, or business owner.
Develop your own criteria for what makes someone an educator, and then do. your. research: What do they say that resonates with you? What do they do that you want to learn from? What is their engagement? Do they have testimonials? Has your friend gone through an experience with them? Do you like the free content they're providing? If you find yourself nodding along as you examine this person, then BOOK THEM for a session/workshop/whatever by golly!
Everyone's criteria will look different--so maybe it's unimportant to you that this person isn't full time, or doesn't make six figures, or doesn't travel all over the world, or isn't published in every. single. magazine and blog. Then find someone who fits that! And vice versa, maybe some of those things are super important to you--then find someone who fits that.
And "educators" please, keep in mind, that while you might have something to say, be sure that you're doing your own research, learning by trial and error, walking the walk (and not just talking the talk). Be authentic. Be honest. And be real.
Tell us, are you an educator? Are you a student? We want to hear from you!
The Girls of B+P