Bizz, bizz, buzz, buzz – ouch!

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With it finally looking and feeling like spring in Wisconsin, the Baby Bumblebee song from the soundtrack of my Girl Scouting days flew into my head today. Unfortunately this little gem of a diddy also tripped my earworm – ugh…

Here’s the silver lining of the earworm being tripped – the first two versus of the Baby Bumblebee song actually buzz with some solid wisdom:

I’m bringing home a baby bumblebee,

Won’t my mommy be so proud of me,

I’m bringing home a baby bumblebee,

Ouch! It stung me!

It takes courage to go after your big idea or big dream with intent – especially when it takes every ounce of bravery to reach out and grab it.

With the seemingly hard part of catching the dream behind you, you begin settling in. You feel proud of bringing home your big, glorious dream.

And then bam – you get stung by your dream. A new twist or challenge you hadn’t quite anticipated. Landing this big dream was a bit messier than expected.

It’s the stings though that pack the whollop of new learnings and insights. A whollop ultimately enhancing your big dream.

Go out and catch yourself some perfectly, perfect baby bumblebees. It will be worth the stings!

photo credit: looking for a home. via photopin (license)

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Bakery allure

Early in my career I was advised, “Have a role at a meeting. Don’t just eat a roll.”

419441765_94482367fbThis is advice I often savor, whether or not I’m attending a meeting. What value can I add to a project? How can I best support the idea? Am I the right person for this initiative – am I just taking a seat at the table so I can eat a roll?

The next time you’re invited to a meeting or project, ask yourself what’s motivating your participation.

Is it the bountiful tray of pastries and rolls that will most certainly be in the center of the table – especially appealing since you missed breakfast? Or, is it the appetite and passion you have for the role?

Relish the role that only perfectly, perfect you can deliver!

 

photo credit: Brooklyn’s specialty via photopin (license)

Sacrifice

Giving things up can be challenging. This is the time of year when you may have decided to give up something that is near and dear to you for a period of 40 days. Perhaps it’s sweets, television or if you’re really hardcore, social media.

During my marketing communications/advertising years, I recall an initial strategy meeting. It was the beginning of a new business pitch for a coveted blue-chip client. A large group had been assembled so name cards were in order. On the back of our name cards appeared these words: Strategy is Sacrifice.

I had no idea what that meant.

7218257The strategic planner leading the meeting explained the statement. The meeting would produce lots of good ideas – out-of-this-world brilliant ideas. He went on to say the most brilliant thing we could do was to make sacrifices during the process. To be willing to walk away from ideas we were in love with in order to make two or three ideas so emotionally and strategically compelling that the client would select our team.

In retrospect I had learned about the Strategy is Sacrifice concept from my beloved high school English teacher, Mrs. Elling.

She encouraged students to not reflect every resource discovered when writing research papers. Rather only reflect the most salient. “I’ll know you conducted extensive research by the limited number of resources you cite.”

This was a tough concept at 17. How could less be more? While I really wanted to please Mrs. Elling, I also wanted her to know how thorough I had been. The hours I had spent at the high school library, the local library and the university library. I had hundreds of 3 x 5 note cards all worthy of inclusion.

In the end I followed Mrs. Elling’s advice. The paper was returned with her handwritten notes and observations noting this was a well researched paper.

Strategy is sacrifice. Getting super focused to make your idea, your project, your work so brilliant, it takes on an energy and passion of its own. Coming to life in a way that instills confidence and knowledge. Creating the connection that wins the new business pitch and earns the A+.

When it comes to ideas and projects, sacrifice is the winning strategy for all the days of the year.

Drag Queens, Tupperware and Burps!

That big, brilliant idea of yours that only perfectly, perfect you can create – what’s keeping you from giving it a whirl?

Is it because it’s been done before?  Is it because you can never be as “smart” as Mary Sue in the IT department who serves on two different non-profit boards and was just recognized as the company’s top performer? Or are you just at a loss of where to start with your big idea – how to take that first step?

The reasons to not give your idea, your big dream a whirl are infinitely plentiful.  The reason to start, the reason to give your idea that you’ve been turning over and over in your many showering or driving brainstorm sessions is simple and short:  you.

You have a unique perspective to bring to the world.  No one else is wired like you.  It is your own brilliant flaws, imperfections, gifts, talents and life experiences that make you especially qualified to introduce your big dream to the world.

Take Kevin Farrell actor and author, for example.  He has become the top-selling Tupperware lady in the United States. A remarkable feat given the enormous availability of storage containers in the aisles of your grocery store and big box retailers.  Retailers have made certain you never have to sit through another Tupperware party again – ever.

Dee W. Ieye - the country's top selling Tupperware lady!

Dee W. Ieye – the country’s top selling Tupperware lady!

Enter Kevin’s alter ego:  Dee W. Ieye.  Dee is the drag queen of Tupperware and has managed to give the 65-year old Tupperware party a double twisting somersault flip forward to relevancy. By leveraging Tupperware’s proven business model Dee is selling something much different than Tupperware.  Dee is selling entertainment, Dee is selling theatre – Tupperware just happens to be the vehicle.

In addition to providing entertainment, Dee’s approach provides the forum to come together in community versus feeling a sense of obligation to buy something.  While we would need a psychologist to weigh in on this, my notion is that Dee is the number one selling Tupperware lady in the U.S.  because she taps into an emotional motivation versus an obligatory motivation to purchase that super wonderful lettuce crisper, that you may or may not need.  The purchase happens because Dee allows you to imprint a positive experience.  She instantly replaces that sense of despair of having to buy something you really don’t want or need because it’s your next-door neighbor’s Tupperware Party.

The world needs your big idea. It needs your smarts and brilliance to modernize “done before” ideas.  The world needs you to press that burp seal and let your idea escape from the tightly sealed storage container it’s been in for much too long!

Start burping!

#YourTurnChallenge #DayOne

“It’s Complicated”

I distinctly remember the first time I uttered those words to a colleague. In my head, I had lulled myself into thinking it was the polished, sophisticated, “I’m the expert” response.

The moment my “It’s complicated” hit the air, I was instantly sorry.

The words were greeted by a nearly imperceptible eye-roll and one-word retort: “Really.”

“It’s complicated” has become code for:

  • Bless your heart, you’re just not very bright.
  • Your skills and experiences are not important, nor valued – I am clearly so much more important, more intelligent than you.

“It’s complicated” has become the great deflector and collaborator killer. When we’re asked for an opinion or a point-of-view in which we’re feeling uncomfortable or an itsy-bitsy ounce of vulnerability, it’s the easy go-to response.

When we want to mark our territory in a meeting where our ego just can’t get out of her own way, or we think we need to impress others, or we’d rather control than collaborate, out trots “it’s complicated.” (For dramatic effect, start with a heavy sigh, give a push back from the table and then deliver your most stern “it’s complicated.”)

And, if you’re feeling an idea is too scary, too risky, too involved, making you too uncomfortable “it’s complicated” is your go-to death knell.

Ready to experience all the potential the perfectly, perfect you has to bring to the world?

Ditch “it’s complicated.” She’s not your friend.