July 2022 From the Executive’s Desk: We All Have Talents, Realize Them, Use Them

I hope each of you had a wonderful Fourth of July spending quality time with family and friends. We’ve been busy keeping up with all things ASPE as we plan for great success for our upcoming 2022 Convention & Expo in Indianapolis on September 16–21.

Speaking of success, in this column I would like to focus how successes may come about and how each of us can use our respective talents and efforts in achieving them.

Each of us, I’m sure, could go back in time and recall many success stories we’ve witnessed over the years. Those may have been within our industry, company, family, or many other areas.

Regardless of who accomplished those successes, in most cases success is brought about through tremendously long hours and hard work to accomplish an array of goals that were set forth and achieved due to a mindset of “I will not fail.” Better yet, relative to what we can accomplish together, we must have a mindset of “We will not fail.”

So many times, most of us or our companies, associations, etc., have a mindset that to be successful at whatever we are attempting to achieve, there must be a set of talents, or one obvious talent, to succeed. Well, I beg to differ to a degree. (I don’t disagree totally as it’s accurate to assume that for any level of success there must have been some small amount of talent that allowed excellent results.)

Pulling from something I’ve used over the years while focusing on the mindset that I’m trying to instill through this column, if we strive to impart a small group of core values in every aspect of our personal and professional lives, all things are possible.

Years ago, I ran across a really nice concept that puts forth fundamental steps that will allow each of us, regardless of talent, to be successful. When you break it down, it’s very simple indeed. I’m not sure where this list originated, but how true it is for each of us as it relates to everything we do. This is not a new idea and especially not revolutionary; however, it is something that is worth repeating, and if you haven’t seen it before, it’s worth seeing now!

10 Components that Will Drive the Engine of Success

I believe there is immense value in the following 10 components that will drive the engine that will ultimately lead to success. Take a good look in your respective mirror and put yourself through this easy test to see where you may need improvement.

  1. Being on Time – My wife will tell you that this is a big pet peeve of mine in that I hate being late or for you to be late. I can’t imagine any reason for being late with the possible exception of an emergency being involved. So, show up on time and be ready to achieve the goals of the day or event. By the way, if you are on time, I really feel you are late. To be ready to achieve what you are set out to do, be early and begin early.
  2. Work Ethic – This to me is self-explanatory in that there is only one way to do anything: the right way, all the time. From an ethical standpoint, there is no excuse for anything less than your best effort. As an example, consider how you are when no one is looking vs. when you are in the spotlight. You should be striving to accomplish the same level of success at all times.
  3. Effort – This goes hand in hand with work ethic. How many times have you been asked or asked the following: “Have you actually put in a hard day’s work?” Are you extending yourself or just putting in time? All of these questions are directly related to your efforts in achieving goals and tasks. Are you interested in the status quo or do you plan to improve yourself each day? Let’s be thankful for the opportunities we have to become successful and give our best efforts.
  4. Body Language – OMG! This has to be one of the most important areas for each of us to convey to others our actual mindset on a daily basis. Regardless of the circumstances you may be in, one thing you can demonstrate to all is the fact that you are never defeated and will always compete and perform. How many times have you heard someone comment about speaking multiple languages and how important that is in some instances? Within the concept of this column, the only language that is important is our body language. Other than your mental state, it is so important to impart to others with our actions. Many times, body language is the first thing noticed when we are seen by our industry counterparts. Make a great first impression, as those are too difficult to change later.
  5. Energy – Okay, we’ve all heard about energy hogs. Are you one? Let’s not be that person. Let’s focus on being the person who brings it to the table, not the one who hauls it away. All of us need to bring good, positive energy to assist in keeping an activity going and keep it at the highest levels. Having good energy and being highly active and positive can have a huge impact on how you perform, how you feel, and how others feel around you.
  6. Attitude – We have two choices here, and they are very simple: We can have a positive attitude or a negative attitude. There is nothing in between. Having a positive attitude will pay many dividends during any activity. Our state of mind as we head into anything can directly affect the outcome of the event or our performance each day. Let’s focus on being positive and not negative. It’s your choice. I’ll gladly be the first, and I hope you follow.
  7. Passion – This is a great one. I can’t imagine anyone who is or becomes successful not having a passion to do what they are doing. Having passion for something will help make all of the items on this list easier to accomplish in our daily lives. Have some excitement about the things you are about to accomplish. Be passionate about staying hungry and wanting to do more.
  8. Being Coachable – I can truthfully state that I would not be where I am today without having some very important people in my life who really cared about playing a vital role in helping teach and mold me by coaching me through some learning curves. It takes a special person to be a coach; however, a stronger person realizes they need coaching and will understand the growth that can come from receiving this gift from others. No one is perfect. Always know that each of us can become better at our given trade. Put me in, coach.
  9. Doing Extra – We can tie every one of these components together in a nice tidy package if we would just do extra. It’s all about never being satisfied with just being average or meeting the requirements specified for a given task. Nothing will ever be a success without going that extra mile. If I need someone to help a situation be a success, I’m not interested in a “clock puncher” to bring anything to fruition. I want that individual who shows up early, exceeds all requirements, and then is looking for more. Whatever it takes, let’s get it done. Someone looking to be a successful team member will understand and remember that you can’t spell team with the letter “I.” It just will not work. So, who are you going to be? What are you going to do? I hope a little extra. Don’t sell yourself short.
  10. Being Prepared – Okay, I’m going to just go ahead and say this to you: If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail. I know, that’s not original either, but how true it is. You can never be too prepared. Touch every base, turn over every rock. I could go on and on with these kinds of statements. Our lives today, especially in the world we live, can bring about tremendous stress. Being prepared can help relieve some of our stress. Being prepared can keep us focused and organized and assist in moving our respective strategies forward. If we aren’t moving forward, we are backing up. There isn’t a standing-still option.

As I begin closing out this column, I’ll state the obvious: When I look in my mirror each morning and reflect on these 10 attributes, it is clear to me that I have much work to do. If I will focus each and every day on the possibilities that can become realities, I should make a conscious effort in focusing on implementing each of these into my daily life.

Can I get each of you to join me in doing exactly that?

Let’s revisit how I began this column. I began speaking about successes and how much talent may have been involved in bringing about those successes. The only talent needed to implement these components to bring about a level of success in all that we do is to simply set two goals.

Set the first goal: Look in the mirror! Set the second goal: Take the needed steps.

We all have the talent to make that a successful endeavor.

So, as an ASPE member, or a prospective member, I hope you will plan to continue your respective growth in your personal and professional life by using your given talents and these 10 core values to achieve success.

Thank you for allowing me the time to visit with you today through this column on ASPE Pipeline. Also, thank you for your willingness to give your time and talents to our great Society.

Stay healthy and safe!

Carry on…

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