I was blown away by the response I received from my blog last week, Finishing the Race. The comments I received ranged from simple “thank you’s” to questions about how I created an opportunity from the uncertainty of going through a traumatic life experience.
When I read a couple of comments about what happened to me after the Miracle on the Hudson and how I created an opportunity out of it, my response to them was that it was the wrong question. The question should have been WHY I created what I did.
Throughout my life, I too, was focused on the wrong question, which caused me much turmoil and frustration. When I attended the sales seminars to improve my skill sets, a majority if not all of them focused on the skills, questions, and approaches to use to help people come to a decision that was good for them. I worked on mastering those skills, and they definitely helped me achieve and accomplish many of my sales and quota goals. But it wasn’t until what I learned during my experience of the Miracle on the Hudson that I had the epiphany which changed the course of how I approached and served my potential clients which elevated me from a good sales person to a trusted advisor and friend.
For the eight months before the Miracle on the Hudson, I was working on developing a new client that had zero experience with my company. I employed the tried and true skills I learned over the previous 23 years, and we were progressing slowly. Then one night, things started to shift in my mindset and, ultimately, I had a date with destiny in my sales career and how I approached my business.
One evening in December 2008, I had scheduled an executive dinner with our client executive team and my management team. As I was driving my manager and another associate to the dinner, my manager started to get “excited”, telling me we are losing this opportunity and I didn’t have my Powerpoints previewed with him and I was missing a lot of details that he wanted put in, the tried and true approach he had been successful with over his selling career. I was a little shook up but had to soldier on as I was hosting this dinner. At the dinner, my client, the CIO, asked me if everything was alright. I told him it would be and we got through dinner and I stayed up all night to readjust the Powerpoints to my manager’s liking and prepare for the next morning’s meeting.
We presented the next morning, and the feedback I received wasn’t as positive as I had hoped. See, I previewed the PowerPoint deck with my client the afternoon before and got his approval, then changed it to accommodate my manager. I told my client why I changed the presentation as my client was not only in a business relationship with me but we developed a personal relationship. He was working with me, not my company. He knew my motive was to serve him and his company, not soley my company. He knew I was the person he could call at 2am when he had a problem as my motive was to serve, not to make a big commission check.
That Lesson came into play at the critical moment
That client was the last person I spoke to minutes before US Airways 1549 crashed into the Hudson River. When I realized the plane was going down, he was the one I prayed would call my wife, not my manager. Our motives were aligned, and five weeks after the Miracle on the Hudson, his company became a new client of mine.
If you have what Napolean Hill calls definiteness of purpose, and are focused on doing the right thing and taking massive action, then there is one thing that makes all the difference, grace. It’s what shows up and guides you when things get rough. And that’s when your motive or intent comes to the forefront, and all of a sudden, great things happen.
That’s what happened during the Miracle on the Hudson and how I changed how I go about my relationships since. Because
Motive does Matter.
When you are trying to do something that supports somebody’s mission, and the greater good, the world , your family, and ultimately yourself, a different level of passion and insight comes through you.
You do what you do for a different reason, and grace comes to you.
The pathway of creating opportunity from uncertainty starts when your motive is on something bigger than yourself, which I call gratitude. The more gratitude you share, the more grace you receive, and the more grace you receive, you are serving a higher purpose and people will want you to be in their lives.
The critical thing is to change the reasons why we do things.
I believe that one of the reasons Jesus died, rose, and ascended was to be an example of how to put motives in the right place. After Jesus’ ascension, Our Creator sent the Holy Spirit, whose mission is to change our motives by making His motives our motives. The Holy Spirit is God’s way of saying
And that is why all the MOMENTS in your life, MATTER!