I have met people who have worked smarter than me. Some I respect a tremendous amount because they are absolutely genius at producing a well strategized result. But I don’t know that I have ever met anyone who works harder than I do. Only a few even come close.
I was reminded of hard work and a disciplined life this week as I was doing job interviews. Some people just want it so easy. Do they honestly think they can just walk into a job interview, demand the big pay, and then produce at a moderate standard? Is life that easy where they come from?
I have had to work for everything I have, and I am not bitter. I actually enjoy it. I have found that when you love what you do, you never work a minute anyway. But I do love to work. I don’t feel bad about it. It is often the first thing I think of when I wake up and sometimes I am too excited to sleep at night and I have to get up to write down creative thoughts or to make plans for the next day or to add a critical piece to the strategy puzzle that I am working on for a client.
When I was a child my father was an extremely hard working man whom I respected deeply and loved more than any other person alive. I did sometimes want more of his attention, but I was pretty secure in the fact that I was “Daddy’s Little Girl.” Even so, he never made it easy on me. When I left home at 16 there were no hand outs. If I called home looking for money, I was told to work harder. It wasn’t very long before I stopped calling.
I joined the army when I was only 17. There were almost 80 people that signed up for Basic and General Military Training and 14 of them were women. 6 months later I was 18 years old and one of four women left out of 30 graduates. Physical fitness was never my thing and the 4:00AM 15km runs just about killed me. The first few weeks I puked more than I ate every day. I did over 2000 push-ups in three days and could take a full punch to the stomach like any man. They made jokes about the women jumping from ditch to ditch with a typewriter tied to their back and they were not far off from the truth. The discipline was gruelling but it reinforced a standard for hard work that has followed me into my adult years and produced success in many things that I have put my hand to.
When one adds the passion to accomplish great things and not live a mediocre existence anything becomes possible.
So I am not sure I understand an employee mentality. In fact, I don’t think I want to understand. What is your value? Is it $10/hour? $20/hr? $50/hr? Is it based on what someone else will pay you? Or is it based on how much they can replace you for?
Yes I am an employer today and I pay out wages based on the worth of the effort, but what I long to see is an individual who has passion and is excited about challenge. I look for a spark in the eye and a quickening in the step that says this person is alive with possibilities. They are willing to work and work hard. They are willing to try new things and fall down and get up again. They are not worried as much about how much they can get per hour but they are more concerned with where they can get to from here. I love to see a sponge who is thirsty for knowledge and fresh for new adventure. They are a thinker and a planner, but they are a mover and a shaker as well.
If you know that person I would hire them in an instant! Given the right set of circumstances I might even marry them!
How bad do you want success? Is it worth putting your back into it?