Thursday, September 15, 2011

What is your Credit Score?

One of the things I noticed this past weekend, as I spent time with so many great visionary leaders and people passionate for the cause of ending suicide, is that none of these people seem the least bit interested in their own personal credit score.

What do I mean by that?

So often, in the workshops, in the meetings, in the casual conversations that were had in corridors and even the bar after hours, the word credit came up. But not in the way you might imagine. These people weren't talking about getting credit. They were talking about how it doesn't really matter.

Their goal, their singular goal, is to help those who need it get the resources they need. They want to ensure that each person is taken care of, so that the option of suicide does not become the only option for them. But they really don't care HOW this happens, just as long as it happens.

Organizations from across the country banded together last weekend to raise awareness for the lack of resources for our veterans and to urge everyone to work together to create a support plan for these individuals that has no gaps for them to fall into, no places for them to get lost in the system. They weren't concerned about who was the organization that "saved the life" -- they were just concerned that the life got saved.

Now I know, suicide -- I mean... its a pretty huge thing, right? And of course, no one is going to suggest that THEY get the credit for saving a life, if the life is saved, right? I mean, they'd seem pretty petty if that is all they were in it for.

But we leaders often fall into the trap of pride, and of wanting to get the credit. You think of a great idea and dang it, you want everyone to know that it's YOUR idea, that YOU, creative, smart, wonderful YOU, came up with this fantastic idea. But what does that really matter? Who CARES who came up with the idea, as long as it works?

Leaders, I challenge you to "rethink" how you calculate your "credit score." Do you give yourself points for your innovative ideas? Do you fill with pride every time you see your project being highlighted on the organization's webpage? Well, knock it off.

Instead, start counting your credit score by the people you serve. See the benefits of people-investment. Focus your energies on how your great idea can make a difference in the world, and lose hold of the notion that because it was "your idea" you somehow own the process and actions of those who utilize it.

Think of what the world would be like if we all stopped working for credit and just simply started working for the greater good. What could we accomplish if we stopped focusing on the "who did what" scores and started focusing on the "what got done" scores instead.

That's the world I want to live in. Don't you?

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