- Who & Why?
Category Archive for: ‘service’
I mentor a young woman who is getting her undergraduate degree. She recently interviewed me for her entrepreneur class. One of the questions she asked moved me very much.
Her question was, “What does it mean to you to think about yourself as an entrepreneur?” I haven’t sat down and thought about this question in a very long time. I sat back to reflect in order to give her an honest and sincere answer. Instead what I discovered is that I became quiet emotional at the privilege I had to be an entrepreneur.
As I reflected on the last ten years of my life in running this company, two things stood out as themes to my answer: honor and responsibility.
To be an entrepreneur for me means to be a pioneer and a trend-setter while helping people and organizations choose to see things differently and excel. It is an honor and a privilege to be an entrepreneur and it is clearly NOT for everyone. Everyday is exciting and fun. Others may see risk and instability, I see a promise to be better and impact the world in a positive way. I see it as my responsibility and an honor.
Every day it is my privilege to be allowed into our clients’ lives and hearts and minds. Rarely is there a day when a client doesn’t drop their guard and become vulnerable with me in an effort to be better and do better. What an honor and a privilege it is to be me and to have clients trust me in this way.
What does this mean for you?
Even if you are not entrepreneur, this line of thinking will serve you well in your work and career and personal life, too. Stop and consider:
- What is an activity in your life that is exciting and fun for you?
- Can you take your current career and/or job and choose to see it from the vantage point of an entrepreneur- as fun, exciting and a true contribution to others?
- If you answered “no” to the question above, can you take just ONE aspect of your current career and/or job and choose to see it that way?
- In your life and career, have you stopped to listen to feedback from others regarding what you do that can be seen as: a) a privilege and b) a way to be of service to others?
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Growing up, I always wanted to be of service and help humanity where I could. Part of this need was wrongly based on the notion that, as an immigrant, maybe I’d be more lovable if I was helpful.
Once I overcame the “immigrant” stumbling block, I realized I still wanted to be of service. It just felt good and “right”. After all, why else was I here?
Maybe that sounds sappy or maybe you feel the same way. Regardless, I’ve discovered that part of the human condition is the desire to be relevant- for good (to be of service) or otherwise.
Merriam-Webster.com defines “relevant” as, “having significant and demonstrable (evident) bearing on the matter at hand”. Hollywood is full of people competing to be, or to stay, relevant in our eyes as their admiring public. However, I’m not sure all the Hollywood folks are trying to stay relevant to any particular matter, except fame and fortune. I could be wrong. There are always exceptions.
Relevant people are those with strong personal brands based on service and a cause greater than themselves. They don’t need an admiring public or client base- just a cause.
Applying the definition of “relevant”, if you choose to be of service in order to be significant and have an evident bearing on a cause greater than yourself, you cannot ever fail. People will see your relevance, purpose and greater cause miles away. You will always be relevant. I promise.
The results are: you will attract others (prospects, partners, friends, business) to you with ease and grace. You just have to be the candle that shines and we’ll follow your light to you.
So what does this mean for you? Stop and consider:
- What’s your purpose/cause greater than yourself? Recall the last time you truly took a stand for a cause greater than yourself. Did you notice how much your brand shined and how relevant you were to your audience?
- How can you transfer this notion to your profession and/or work so that you can become and stay a relevant brand?