Enjoy the Adventure of Saying "Yes" to New Experiences
Growing up, my father used to have a number of sayings. Most of them usually aggravated me. One of them, however, related to a question of permission and was always a welcome response. Not because it meant “yes” we could do what ever it was my sister and I were asking about, but because it was a positive affirmation that what we were about to do was good.
There was the time when I was 12-years old, and I asked if I could ride my bike 10 miles by myself to meet him at his office. Another time, when I was 7-years old, I wanted to sleep out with the other neighborhood kids to get up at the crack of dawn to go fishing. Or the time I was asked to be a part of a team of drivers of a motor coach across country. Or the time my sister wanted to take summer courses in Durango (we lived in PA). Almost every time we had a question like that, Dad’s response would be, “Yes. That would be a good experience.”
Experience = Adventure = Growth
Not only was it an experience, each and every time it was a new adventure where my sister and I were encouraged and trusted to stretch our bands of learning and responsibility. Most of the time these were good experiences.
The few times that things didn’t work out the way we had expected – like the time I stepped on a nail and needed tetanus shots on a Sunday – or the time my friends and I were driving in a heavy rainstorm and our car got hit by a slow moving freight train – each of those times, we learned valuable lessons to carry forward with us for the next new experience.
And, with my Dad, there would always be a new adventure to take and another good experience to learn from.
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I am fortunate to have had so many great experience (good and bad) and wild adventures that have taken me well beyond what I was able to envision as a young man.
In terms of growing businesses that are personal and creating brands that are human, the need for people to “experience” things has never been more critical to success. Whether it is a digital experience with emerging technologies or a good old, in-person experience, our organizations need to provide opportunities that encourage our customers to grow too.
Stretch their own bands of learning. Enjoy never dreamed of experiences that they can be a part of, and to share with their circle of influence.
Give them tools to take control, do more and view our organizations as the catalyst for their professional and personal development. In other words, enable them to grow with you and let them know you want to grow with them.
That is the long-term direction that elevates humanity and is a win-win for everyone. But to be successful in this endeavor, we need to identify our own internal status quo as our biggest competition.
More on that in the next article…