You may be interested to know that I graduated from The University of Alabama (Roll Tide!) with a Business degree, and I have to tell you that deciding to start with a title for this blog as “It’s Just Business” was a struggle for more than one reason. Recently, I was at the #KnowYourValue conference in New York City, and it truly energized me! I took in everything Mika Brzezinski said like it was a prophecy. But when the phrase “It’s just business” came up, I immediately had a negative reaction. I have never believed that what we do is ‘just’ about business or that our value to the organization we work for is “just business”. Saying it’s just business seems to devalue what we do each and every working day.
What we do is important… it impacts our ability to make a difference and it’s how we move up in an organization. So many women have a habit of saying ‘it’s just business’ when trying to teach each other not to show emotion when trying to close a deal, negotiate a salary, or when we are excluded from a meeting or key business decision. But I have to tell you, everyone I have ever seen get chocked up about something of huge importance knew that what they were doing was more than just business. There is a great purpose behind emotion, and I think we need to get comfortable sharing that purpose.
I often write about business and life, and I see these as two very different things. When they line up, it is awesome! But more often than not, conflicts arise and it is tough. I mean really tough… life changing tough.
There are many times we look to our business leaders to teach us about life however I have frequently found that when we look to life… we understand why we are in business.
If you are building a brand, like I have done many times, you must know what your “more than just business” is about. What is the purpose? What gets you and your team up in the morning? other than just coffee that is… In all seriousness, if we can’t answer this then our purpose is not clear which also so means our goals are not clear!
I can tell you, for me, it is not and has never been about selling marketing or advertising services. It has always been about building a person, paying attention, and showing a person that their life and what they do really matters. Even the little things, the things that often go unnoticed – these little things define you and make you, you! It’s also about the small words or encouragement that make you want to continue working on that project or learn a new skill to master the missing piece of your workflow puzzle.
So take a look at what message you are sending out into the world…is it JUST BUSINESS… if so…. Step back and dig deeper and try to make a true connection with someone. Take the time to really see the people you are connecting with. Then make an effort to let them see you too – the real you!
Get personal… Get passionate… and Get past “it’s just business”