Sometimes we gain valuable perspective in unexpected places.
On this particular trip, I arrived very late in the evening wanting to get to my hotel and to bed as quickly as possible. The next morning I had a very important presentation and I wanted as much rest as possible. As fate would have it, my driver from the airport to the hotel was very engaging and skillfully initiated and sustained our conversation throughout the entire ride.
The irony of this is that throughout my years of travel, I have made it a practice of often asking people I come into contact with to share their stories. This has proven to be a wonderful way to learn and broaden my perspective. It has provided me with many ideas I have utilized to connect with people in a more personal and caring way. When I asked this driver to share his story, he went on to tell me about his children, all grown, and the success they were enjoying. All of them had not only finished college but also had advanced or graduate degrees.
He spoke about how he had encouraged them over the years to be the best they can be. Not once did he focus on all the sacrifices that I am confident he made for them in order to provide them with the opportunities they obviously made the most of. One of his key messages to his children was, ” You have to bring something to the table if you want to take something away.”
How many of us truly live life in this manner focused on what our contributions can be? It’s no coincidence that if you look at most of the people society deems as successful, you will find a long list of contributions they have made to various groups, organizations, and charities. In many cases, these are contributions of not only money but of their time, ideas and useful insights.
How’s this for perspective? By making a difference, it has made a huge difference in their own lives. These successful people first brought something to the table before taking away the sustained success they enjoy today.
What can you bring to the table?
How can you apply this perspective to your life and business?
Give does come before Take in the dictionary. In most instances, it is the same with achieving success.
When I think back on that ride and the fare I paid, the value and perspective I gained far exceeded the dollars paid.
Mike Sciortino has more than 30 years of experience in the investment management business. Mike speaks at Conferences and writes often about how advisors can differentiate themselves, grow their practice, and improve their lives through time-tested processes. See all of Mike’s stories for CMG Advisor Central. Connect with Mike on LinkedIn.