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Four Lessons From a Concert (and how we can apply them in our work).

This is Eric Church.

(Admittedly, I’m not a huge country music fan but I am now a fan of this man.) Recently, Eric played a concert in Calgary at the Saddledome. And in true Southern Alberta spring fashion, it snowed. A lot. So much in fact that the people in-the-know of the structural limitations of our Saddledome made the call that the concert could not go on. That is, not go on as originally planned. The heavy sound and lighting equipment so common for big arena concerts these days was just too much for the roof to bear, when covered in a heavy layer of spring snow.

Lesson 1 – Change creates choice.

Eric Church had choices to face considering the change of plans. He could cancel/postpone the concert or he could change how he performed. Thankfully, he chose the latter despite the structural limitations.

Eric Church would be playing an acoustical concert. Alone. Just him.

Cries for refunds were “heard” over social media.

Questions and doubts about “how good” the concert might be, could be heard.

What choice would you have made? At work: Be agile.

Lesson 2 – Ask for help. Even if you’re terrific at what you do. People are happy to be on your side.

Well…Eric gained a fan. Likely more than just me that night. He stepped up and onto that stage. Alone. Just Eric and his guitar. With courage and nerves and confidence. He asked us to meet him halfway and assured us that if we did so, we’d all have a good time.

And we sure did. It was a fantastic concert. We witnessed an artist, confident in his musical foundation. He played his heart out, and had the courage to do so, alone. But he wasn’t really alone you see. He asked for our help. To meet him halfway. And we did. With pleasure.

Are you willing to ask for help? At work: Be vulnerable.

Lesson Three – Let go of “perfect”.

By the way, Eric wasn’t perfect. Eric flubbed his lyrics while singing “Kill a Word”. He acknowledged it and tried again. The crowd laughed with him, forgave him, appreciated him even more for it and sang along. Mistakes happen. To us all.

How do you respond when you know you’ve messed up? At Work: Be accountable.

Lesson Four – Less is More.

Sometimes you and I get caught up in the desire to do/be/have more.

It shows up in our feelings of inadequacy.

When the Imposter Syndrome makes an untimely appearance.

When our perfectionism gets all fired up.

When we want to add “more” to our presentations, our resumes, our products and services. But sometimes these distract.

Maybe they sound better without all the bells and whistles. No band, just an acoustical set, so to speak. When we are clear, humble, brave, skilled and confident. No need to "fake it 'til you make it" when we are standing on our own foundation of knowledge, skills, expertise and experience.

Remembering that our “audience” is also willing to meet us halfway. To work with us to see us succeed.

What would your “acoustical set” sound like?

(I’m willing to bet it would be great!)

At Work: Be confident in your foundation.

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