Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Be Right #5: Admiration for Ambition

I had the great fortune to work with an amazing young woman yesterday named Madi. I often get asked by students if they can come and work with me for a day. I tell them to call me and very rarely do they follow-up and when given the opportunity they often don't show up. It is annoying! At that age, my friends and I worked for free-ALL THE TIME! We sometimes had two internships at the same time and were paid nothing. That is how you learn- you intern, you volunteer, you ask to work with people and interview people just for experience.

But then there was Madi, she did show up and she did work for free. All day! She worked willingly and offered to do things. She was interested and engaged. On top of it all, she was adorable and fun to be around. I greatly admire Madi's ambition and her enthusiasm. It helped remind me why I love my job and to look at my work with a new fresh perspective that sometimes you forget after doing the same thing for years, even decades! It is great to look at your industry through new eyes and see people who are excited to be a part of it.

It is easy to think kids in school these days feel entitled. You hear it time and time again from companies that have to hire staff just to deal with the entitlement issues of its new hires. Many young people would not dream of working for free, not even for a day. Many don't feel like they have anything to learn about real work experience. Where does this entitlement come from? Are all of us starting to feel entitled to things at our jobs?

But I want to thank Madi. Thank you for being ambitious, thank you for being a great example to everyone else out there. Someone is going to be very lucky to have you working for them someday!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Be Right #4: Pretty Please.

Think about how you feel when someone walks up to you and tells you how pretty you are or how handsome you are. Amazing right? With those few little words, you are beaming and confident. I have a very vivid memory of a woman working at a market in New York and a male customer walked up to her stand. She smiled and looked at him for a moment and flat out said "You are just gorgeous." She wasn't hitting on him or looking for a date. She said it so matter of fact and he thanked her and went on his way. Why is it so hard for us to just tell strangers how pretty or how handsome they are? Are we afraid they will think we are hitting on them? If we all know how great it feels to be told, shouldn't we make the effort to make someone else feel that great too. I endeavor to be like that woman at the market.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Do Right #10: Please use your manners.

Why is it that so often the longer we know someone, the less we feel like we need to have good manners? Think about your first date with your significant other. I imagine you were very polite, pleasing and thank youing all over the place. But time goes by and you find yourself barking out orders to each other and not bothering with how your are talking to each other. I am definitely guilty of this. A please and a thank you go a long way with people and they actually do make people feel good. So this is just a small reminder to remember your manners, not just in public, but with your children, your parents, your siblings and your spouse!