I was recently called upon to speak to a group of employees at an event to mark the company’s expansion into a new line of business. This company has been doing very well with a loyal customer base.
I figure out that since they have such a loyal fan base, that there must be something great about them. I decided to motivate them further and ensure that each of the team members knows and understand that they count. I wanted them to continue to work as a team and understand that the company will continue to achieve success if everyone in the team continues to contribute their quota and make an impact.
Everyone loves and crave for relevance. And relevance comes in different forms. It is about giving attention, being connected, and becoming significant to other people. If you are married like me, relevance to your spouse comes in the form of attention. That’s why it is not unusual for a wife to ask for quality time from the husband from time to time. What she wants and what she is asking for is relevance. And this can be vice versa as well. When a wife gets too busy, the husband can want and demand attention as well.
At your place of work, when you receive some reward or recognition, it shows that you are relevant. Companies, these days can choose specific areas to locate their business for strategic purpose. For example, Amazon recently opened a new headquarter in New York because the city is relevant for their growth strategy. Apple announced that it is opening a billion-dollar campus in Austin, a move that shows that Austin is pertinent to their business. Why not New Orleans or Houston. By the way, I would have loved them to come to Houston.
So the question becomes, how can you as an individual become and stay relevant in your career, and family life? I have three quick tips to share with you today, and I believe if you can follow these tips, you will be able to establish your relevance wherever you find yourself.
1. Love what you do, and do what you love
In my book “Winners Ways” I wrote about the need for everyone to do what they love and love what they do. This is very crucial if you want to become an impact maker. You will do a mediocre job if you do not enjoy what you are doing, there is just no easy way around it. If you are currently not passionate about what you do, are there any aspects of it that you enjoy. For example, If you work in a hospital, you may not necessarily like the fact that you are on your feet for almost 8 hours every day, but do you enjoy nursing the sick people to healing? If you work in the customer service department of your company, and yes you encounter some bad customers, but do you enjoy working with those grateful customers that you help in solving their problems? If so, you need to focus more on the sweet and fun part of your job. What you focus on becomes your reality. There is no utopian society. There will never be a perfect job. Even Presidents do not like some aspects of their jobs, if you doubt me, ask Donald Trump…if he likes to go to Congress for funding, etc.
2. Be hungry and stay passionate
To make an impact on whatever you do, you need to stay hungry and passionate about it. When you think of people in sports, they have a strong passion and intense interest in the sport that they play. They can play games for hours, and they will wake up the next day, and they want to go back still and do it again. That is the level of passion and interest we should all have for what we do. Many people are happy on Friday (TGIF), and less so on Monday (OGIM).
You cannot make an impact if you are not connected and engaged in what you do. Highly successful people are passionate people. Passion is everything. If you are not doing something you are excited about, you are shortchanging yourself, and the chance of achieving success is remote to nothing. You must have a passion for what you do to look forward to going back the next day to continue. Doing what you are passionate about will make you become an impact maker and help you excel in what you do. Passion breeds enthusiasm, and if you are enthusiastic about something, you will have energy and exude confidence. People will generally want to associate with a high-energy and confident person; people will feel your passion without talking about it. If you are in a position today where you are not happy with your life, career, or business, you have to be bold to make a change and pursue what will make you happy. Be hungry and stay passionate, and you will become an impact maker and remain relevant.
3. Pursue Excellence Relentlessly
There is a common saying that what is worth doing is worth doing well. This is a compelling message for anyone who wants to achieve more in life and make an impact. The highly successful people use this concept of pursuing excellence to improve their skills and get better every day at what they do. To be an impact maker, you have to strive to attain excellence in your chosen field of endeavor; you have to continuously find ways of getting better, sharpening your skills, taking on higher responsibilities, setting bigger goals, and ensuring that you deliver top-class results in whatever you do. In pursuing excellence, you must bring on your A-game and put in your best efforts at what you do to ensure that you deliver a topnotch result.
Again in the field of sport, when you think about the contribution of someone like Lebron James to his team, you will understand that indeed he is an impact maker. The chances of the team winning increases when they have the playmaker on the pitch, playing along with other team members. The same fact holds for someone like Lionel Messi of Barcelona or Tim Tebow and Peyton Manning for their different NFL teams.
Pursuing excellence is a commitment that you need to make to start seeing results. It is an intentional determination not to settle for less but always to strive to provide only the best in whatever you do.
If you want to become relevant and make an impact wherever you may find yourself, you have to enjoy what you do, stay hungry and passionate by learning more and finding creative ways to contribute your quota and seek to pursue excellence to make sure you get better and impact lives.
Excellence is the unlimited ability to improve the quality of what you have to offer. —Rick Pitino