March 12, 2010

Where Does Passion Come From?

I've been on a big kick lately about people bringing passion to their jobs. I don't care if they are an artist, a banker, a teacher, a waiter or whatever. We need to realize that everyone benefits when people are excited about what they do and how they deliver it to their customers, clients, neighbors and even strangers.

The great Martin Luther King, Jr. once gave a speech at a junior high school in Philadelphia in October, 1967 (the month I was born) where he said the following:

"...When you discover what you will be in your life, set out to do it as if God Almighty called you at this particular moment in history to do it. don't just set out to do a good job. Set out to do such a good job that the living, the dead or the unborn couldn't do it any better. If it falls your lot to be a street sweeper, sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures, sweep streets like Beethoven composed music, sweep streets like Leontyne Price sings before the Metropolitan Opera. Sweep streets like Shakespeare wrote poetry. Sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will have to pause and say: Here lived a great street sweeper who swept his job well. If you can't be a pine at the top of the hill, be a shrub in the valley. Be the best little shrub on the side of the hill.

Be a bush if you can't be a tree. If you can't be a highway, just be a trail. If you can't be a sun, be a star. For it isn't by size that you win or fail. Be the best of whatever you are."

I've been thinking what the ingredients are to create passion. See if you agree with these.

P is for Pride
. You should have pride in your product, company, team, city, neighborhood, service and most importantly in yourself.

A is for Attitude. You can't fake passion so you better start with a great attitude.

S is for Skills. Are you knowledgeable, competent and confident it whatever it is that you do? Do you constantly seek to be better, taking classes, reading book or blog and talking to those in your field who are better than you?

S is for Sincerity. Can people see that you mean what you say, believe in what you do and who you surround yourself with and most importantly care about people? If they do, you're passion will be visible.

I is for Internally Motivated. I've always felt that inspiration comes from the outside but motivation must come from within. Do you have a fire burning inside you that makes you want to be the best you can be. If you fail, are you worried about those you may have let down or are you more concerned with letting yourself down? What does that "man in the mirror" say to you each day? Does it make you want to go back to bed or could you run to work on energy and enthusiasm?

O is for "Oh My God!" That is what I want people to leave my classes saying. "Oh my God, that was sooooo fun," or "Oh my God, he gave me so many ideas to build my business." How many times have you experienced "Oh my God!" service? Isn't it fun? Isn't it memorable? You can't wait to share your experience with a friend or family member.

N is for "Next." - Passionate people are always looking ahead to their next opportunity, their next challenge, their next chance to have fun. If you are good at what you do and enjoy it, why would you want to wait to do it again?

How do you spell passion? Do you agree with me? Would you change any of my definitions? What was the last experience you had that involved passionate service?

Until next time...Build Relationships...Solve Problems...and Have Fun!