Sit upon straight, tie your shoes, don’t talk with your mouth full and young man…... Young man- make sure that you use your manners. Please and Thank You!
Sounds familiar?!? Well, I hope it does, this is your momma talking and she wants you to be successful with a capital S. Right? So- as we maneuver our way through this great big and wonderful world, how can we take some of Momma’s valuable lessons and apply them to our business life?
First off, do what you say you’re going to do. Sounds fairly easy-right? Wrong- we as people have a tendency to let words fall out of our mouth before our brain is processing…. Humans sometimes overcommit even with good intention, oversell (because they want the sale) or worst of all overcommit and under deliver and it makes you looks BAD. So a good rule of thumb, is don’t. If you say you are going to do something- go back to the fact that your word should be GOLD and do it.
Second thing, treat people like you want them to treat you. Be Kind. Again, it sounds easy but in the world of work, I have found out the hard way that people say one thing to your face and another behind your back… In my 20 plus years as a business professional, I for the life of me will never figure this out.
What motivates people to hurt one another? Money, power, jealousy? Newsflash- What comes around really does go around…. I have seen it time and time again as kindness always prevails. So, be kind and don’t do or say anything your own mother would be ashamed of, because it will bite you in the ass someday, guaranteed.
Finally, this beautiful thing we call life is about RELATIONSHIPS. When I reflect on moments in my life both personal and professional- I seem to value two important things in addition to God and Family. Its Relationships and Time.
Relationships are the corner stone of who we are. Black, white, brown, tall, short, fat, introverted, extroverted or ominiverted. Like or not- We are put on this earth as helpless babies to rely on each other.
Relationships connect us as people to something that is bigger than ourselves. Relationships can support us, lifting us up to achieve great things or do the reverse and break us down in brokenness and defeat.
The reason that I bring up relationships is that yesterday, I had the privilege of attending two work related networking events, one of which with our CEO and my Boss Extraordinaire, Mark Chalfant. (And no I’m not sucking up- he’s actually terrific-)
The first event was 1 Million Cups. It was introduced to us both through a few, delightful, reliable sources, John at Network Kansas and my dear friend and colleague Bob Fettke at Kansas Department of Commerce.
So, 1 Million Cups has a cool, laid back kind of vibe where you drink coffee (I am all for this!), talk with a few familiar faces and a few you are new to and then listen to the stories of a few entrepreneurs as they explain their companies, what inspired them and what we can do as HUMANS to help them be successful. I would say that the event had a nice mix of people. Business types in suits combined with a few folks with dreadlocks. It had a nice urban vibe but not too hippy to scare off the investment and suit/tie types. So two thumbs up!
The reason I feel that 1 Million Cups has been so successful so far and will continue to grow nationally is that we as people have an innate desire to help each other. Maybe it selfish, but being kind feeds the soul and makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
When you help someone and in turn build a relationship with them, it just makes you happy.
From that tiny, little baby that you once were; needing your mother to provide food and shelter for you. To the strong, business professional that you have grown into be- you need to feel loved, nurtured and supported. This is what networking is all about and this my friend is what 1 Million Cups has tapped into.
All in all, listen to your momma, follow life’s golden rules and get out there and network! You may just help the next Bill gates invent Microsoft and I guarantee he will never forget you.