Lift Up Each Other’s Talents in Business and at Work


I sat next to a much more talented alto than myself in choir today.  She has nearly perfect pitch, can read music easily and instantly knows when we’re not following the music correctly, with nearly the same accuracy and timing as our Music Director, Gary, who is famous for her musical perfectionism.  After we rehearsed today, we had a bit of time before our performance.  I shared my observation with her.  “You would be a great Music Director,” I said.  She beamed.  “I would love to be a Music Director,” she replied.  “But I think I’d need to go back to school.”  I thought for a moment.  “Ask Gary what she thinks about you helping out with the Junior Choir.  Maybe you don’t need to go back to school.”  She liked that idea, continuing to beam.

I basked her in her beam, remember those moments in my life / career when mentors and/or colleagues saw me for my talents, and lifted them up, such as:

  • My entrepreneur big brother and mentor John, when he took me out to breakfast 4 years ago and asked me why I wasn’t yet in business for myself;
  • My mentor big sister Georgia, who nearly 10 years ago observed that I was aiming too low pursuing a career as an HR executive, and tried to recruit me to be the CEO of her national nonprofit organization (which I resisted at at the time).

For someone to lift up your talents, unsolicited, and articulate your heretofore unspoken dreams, is powerful indeed.

For example, I remember when my friend and fellow writer Katie kept talking about how she wanted to be paid to be a writer.  For 4 months, I joined Katie’s husband and noodged her to set up a blog for free and start writing; I had just seen Julie & Julia and I was freshly inspired.  From my work with her, I knew that Katie was a talented writer, and frankly, I wanted to watch her swim in the blogging pool first before I gave it a try. She finally relented and started writing her WordPress blog, Capital District Fun.  Katie, by the way, is now a paid writer.  I watched Katie blog for 4 months, and then created my own blog, Deb Best Practices, when tweeting only 140 characters was no longer sufficient expression for me.

What new careers; products; businesses; income streams; and vocational bliss will we create this week by articulating each other’s gifts, in business and at work?

CRUUNY 2013 Service, Courtesy of Lara Turney

CRUUNY 2013 Service, Courtesy of Lara Turney

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