This post by Kathy Carrico
A work environment is most effective when a team of people offer value to each other first, and to their customers or clients second. Similar to Southwest’s motto that their employees are their number one customer, I feel it is critically relevant that by supporting and recognizing each others’ talents and value, we collectively allow our agency (company, institution, association) to thrive and shine. This concept and practice are not necessarily attained with ease, but once they are, they are powerful!
I find myself surrounded by champions whose expertise is amongst the best in the country. While we each have separate and unique programs and projects to manage, we are interlinked in our mission to provide value and purpose. When you work alongside your peers for more than a decade, you are exposed to each others’ idiosyncrasies, hot buttons, personality types, fears, successes and moods. It is inevitable that really knowing each other results in family-like behavior. At times we take each other for granted, or we assume that person will always simply “be there” for us. Sometimes we find ourselves feeling like the golden child, if only for moments. Our personalities may clash, and we may unintentionally behave as sibling-rivals, but as champions, we purposefully step back, and listen…to each other. We regain our focus on the family, our agency… and we embrace our individual value and contributions, and go back to work, with our mission and our leader (the boss) to guide us.
Rarely does one find a workplace that embraces individuality, entrepreneurial creativity, and group support to feel empowered to make a difference. We are in the business of business development. Within this tall order, we must demonstrate our own vow to make our center the most valuable resource for existing and future clients. And we will do this effectively, and better than any other center, because we value each other as champions above all.