Living the Dream is Not Just a Cliche




  • — March 5, 2019

    I have a client or two that always answer the question, “How are you?” with one of my favorite answers, “Living the dream.” Are they? I think they may be. Are you? Have you thought about that lately? And, crazier, do your peers, colleagues, employees?

    One of the best parts of my work is interviewing interesting people from all walks of life. While we work with many CEOs and Business Owners who all have great stories, it’s only a few who can get past the obvious and articulate their message in a meaningful way.

    I often find that those who understand their why and realize it’s bigger than their business. These conversations often spark some real thinking and more good conversation. That happened just last week when I spent a day at their office interviewing sixteen of their team members.

    They’re a company fighting uphill against employee turnover. Like so many companies my team and I talk with, many companies are doing so many of the right things. They have core values, an incentive program, perks like a stocked refrigerator, an open PTO policy, team building events and so much more.

    Just from talking to their team members, I couldn’t help but notice how well they have articulated their mission and culture. People use similar language about the company, express common values and celebrate their diverse workforce. They speak kindly about their customers and one another. It would be reasonably straightforward recruiting for this company. Companies with a clear sense of who they are and the people that do well there are steps ahead in the rocky terrain of recruiting.

    If recruiting is difficult for them, imagine what it’s like for those who are NOT running their business with purpose, intention and a 21st business mindset.

    When they told me about a concept they were thinking about, I downloaded the book it’s based on imaging it would be helpful as we crafted their LinkedIn profiles. The book, “The Dream Manager,” captivated my attention, and for two hours (not a long read) I was heads-down pouring through the story and considering the process.

    It’s powerful and kind of a “duh” moment when you think about it. Helping people realize their dreams.

    It made me think I should do better at helping the people on my team realize their dreams. What are their dreams? Well, I know one of them wants to go to Hawaii. Hmmm, what about the others?

    How often have you heard, “Work on your business not just in your business”? Maybe we should also have a version that goes something like, “Work on your dreams, so you’re just not daydreaming.” Could there be something to that?

    Read the book.

    Or, watch.

    Think about how you can realize your own dreams and those of others.

    Whether you’re the CEO or the person who wants to build a better culture, learning how to make a difference in someone’s life is a fabulous place to begin.

    If you think this sounds too fluffy, give it a google and see what you find. Here’s an article about Infusionsoft and what they accomplished implementing this concept. Kudos to Infusionsoft and so many others for thinking differently.

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    Author: Colleen McKenna

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