Today I had a chat with a great blogger, active social media personality and life coach John Falchetto who is originally from Canada and now resides in the south of France. In this interview he told me about what he does, how he works on his personal brand and what it’s like to live abroad as an expat.
First off, what do you do John?
I’m a life coach for expat entrepreneurs.
What is your definition of an expat?
Someone who works and lives outside his or her homeland. I use homeland in the largest sense of the word, this can mean a Scotsman in London or a person who leaves one neighborhood in a large city for a new one.
Who are your typical clients?
There is nothing typical about my clients, except for the fact that they are business owners. They work on developing applications in California, or develop an import/export business in the UAE. A common thread would be their lack of satisfaction with the status-quo and their search for more in life and work.
What are the top 3 questions asked by your clients?
1. Can you help me get clarity in my work
2. I feel stuck, can you help me with my business?
3. I run a successful business, but I want help finding meaning in my life
How do you help expats?
I help them find balance in their lives by aligning their values with their work. In some cases it reassembles the work you do with personal brands, defining strengths, values and aligning them with what clients are willing to pay for.
What are your best words of advice to expats?
Remember why you moved in the first place.
You are in a very competitive field, how does your personal brand stand out?
Life coaching is very competitive field, I follow some steps to make sure I stand out I know who I want to help (expats), and I have a clear understanding of the challenges they face. I have been an expat all my professional life (I left Canada after university) and I am clear on the unique value I bring to the table. Finally a brand without a powerful broadcasting platform is a dead one, so I am active online mostly on my blog but also on Twitter, Google + and of course LinkedIn.
Tell us about your blog and how it fits into your business?
My blog is my storefront, it allows people to find out more about my values, and how I approach my work. I work exclusively online so my blog is my main marketing tool, not only must it bring value to those who read it, but it also has to help those who are searching for help determine if they would like to work with me.
What gives you the best results on social media?
Building relationships with other bloggers. The tools are use to achieve this are my blog, twitter and now Google +.
If you had a list of ‘best-kept secrets’ you’d recommend, which would you include and why?
I have several blogs I read everyday, because their authors are my mentors.
The Sales Lion by Marcus Sheridan, a unique name for a generous friend who has one of the strongest personal brands I know online.
Spinsucks by Gini Dietrich, an amazing lady who finds the time in her insane schedule to help everyone she comes into contact online.
Mummy in Provence by Ameena Falchetto, my business and life partner, an expat and the secret of my success.
Looking out 3 to 5 years, what do you think will be the next big change for expats globally?
Thanks to the Internet, and all the great new social tools at our disposal I see the expat population increasing by several folds in the coming years. Since the dawn of times we had to live near where we worked. In the 90s people started to work from home and flexi-time was introduced. Now with tools like the cloud and Skype, where we work doesn’t really matter. It could be anywhere, as long as there is good wifi. We will soon all be expats.
What are 3 things you’ve told yourself that kept you going during your darkest hour?
1. This isn’t the toughest thing I have endured, I have been through worse.
2. As bad as it is, I know why I am doing this for and what my goal is.
3. I’m grateful I’m healthy and have the support of Ameena through all this.
What are 3 life memories you recall most frequently and why?
• The birth of my daughter last spring – this single most life changing event ever.
• The first time I ran a 10km race (I have severe asthma) – Made me realize that what I dream of, I can achieve.
• Ameena and I meeting in her office 4 years ago – reminded that we make choices and we should always go with our gut feeling.
Your favorite quote?
“It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.” – The Little Prince, Antoine de St Exupéry
Tell us what it’s like to live in the south of France?
Like anyplace once the honeymoon period is over, there great times and tough times. I live in a small village in a rural area so there are times when I miss the opportunities a big city can offer. Then I take a walk with my daughter in the vineyards around our house and I’m happy. Of course there is also the wine and the beautiful sunsets on the Mt Ventoux. Need I say more?
Do you ever miss Canada?
I miss some parts, the fall, and Montreal in the summer time. I am strong believer that home is where the heart is, and right now my heart is in Provence with my wife and daughter.
What’s the one thing people can do to help you?
Visit my blog expatlifecoach.com and let me know how I can help them achieve their dreams.