Don’t follow, lead.
Don’t copy, create.
Don’t start, finish.
Don’t sit still, move.
Don’t fit in, stand out.
Don’t sit quietly, speak up.
Not all the time, sure, but more often.
No one cares how much you care.
That salesperson who will surely die if he doesn’t close this sale, that painter who is sweating blood to get her idea on the canvas, that student who just pulled an all-nighter…
In fact, we’re hyper alert to the appearance of caring. We want to do business with people who appear to care, who appear to bring care and passion and dedication to their work. If the work expresses caring, if you consistently and professionally deliver on that expression, we’re sold.
The truth is that it’s what we perceive that matters, not what you bring to the table. If you care but your work doesn’t show it, you’ve failed. If you care so much that you’re unable to bring quality, efficiency and discernment to your work, we’ll walk away from it.
And the irony? The best, most reliable way to appear to care when it matters–is to care.