Click, Click, Click

667. Join me in inspiring truly powerful people. Each day I will add a new thought, story or idea to support your quest and mine.

SeaTac airport. 5:30 am. I’m sitting in the atrium holding coffee with both hands, staring into the void waiting for consciousness to catch up with my body or at least to know that my heart is beating enough to sustain life. I am not alone in my stupor though my stupor is decidedly less active than the stupor practiced by others. There is a different dull hum of voices in the morning; luggage wheels click over tile at a slightly slower rate, setting a tempo for the morning rush.

There are more business folk than families at this obscene hour. If I were a farmer I’d fly at this time of day and I’d move through the airport as if it were one of my fields. Slow, respectful. Business travelers have forgotten their inner farmer and walk with a deliberate goal in mind: get “there.” Even at this early hour and in their pre-coffee diminished capacity, they move with a studied determination. Click, click, click. No time to waste. A plane to catch. A sale to close. A deal to make. Ten minute rest interval. A trip to the gym. A light meal. Most have heads down and are answering emails as they move with intention to their portal.

Don’t get me wrong. I love business people. I work with business people. They live in a different culture than I do. They play by a different set of rules; they hire me because my rules are different and so I can see what they cannot. For instance, I do not believe that “time is money;” were we living in the industrial age that might still be true but it was an antiquated notion before my parents were born. I’m certain that “relationship is money,” that the path to efficiency is to slow down and not speed up (I can prove it). From my vantage point the prerequisite for success is cooperation, not competition. Cooperation is an infinite game and competition is finite; competition can live within cooperation, but not the other way around. I’ve learned from famous consultants that the only real purpose of a business is to serve a customer – that is cold language until you realize that the verb is “to serve” and “customer” is an antiseptic word for “human being.” Do you want to succeed in business: serve a human being. Serve lots of them. Focus on what you bring to them and not what you can get from them.

As I contemplate another cup of coffee (oh, okay…if I have to…) I want to whisper to the morning sprinters, “Markets are made-up just as are economies; they are constructs and not forces of nature; we make the rules, we thrive or suffer according to the world we make up. Let’s play a different game. Let’s practice health. Slow down. Live today. Take a look around: you are surrounded by those you serve.

One Response

  1. Reblogged this on Projects & Ponderings and commented:
    David Robinson is one of my heroes and a constant source of inspiration to me. Reading his blog is always a breath of perspective. And this post is one that challenged me to slow down immediately. I am grateful for this.

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