What Are You Working For?

Imagine that your customer just found out that they are terminally Ill. They have 3 months to live and have decided to take a visit to our island for 1 week - this is their dying wish. How do you treat this person? Like they are special right? You feel somewhat guilty about the fact that you have a little more time to live and so you want to ensure that their last days are well spent. Are you working for money at this moment? Or are you serving with kindness?

This is a scenario I often post to my teammates to personalize the value of our work. Why? Because we never know the context people are in and so it is important that we approach our work as what it is. An opportunity to serve with kindness. 

We signed a new project a week or two ago. Before the official meeting, the client reached out for a conversation. She asked a few short questions. The biggest was a version of “what do you believe is most important for project success.“ 

Because I didn’t have notes or prepared responses, I spoke from the heart about what we have observed to be the foundation of success on any project. Namely, that all goals and actions remain aligned/focused on the persons whose lives we are impacting through our work.

Too often “Work” is viewed as the thing we do before the weekend, the check, the promotion. The obligation we really don’t want to fulfill.  

The past few years have highlighted the best teammates, colleagues, and clients as those who approach their work with a deep commitment to be of service to others.