Tag Archives: self improvement

The Hourly Worker

Party hat and whistle On a recent trip to Rumson, NJ to celebrate the twins birthday, my daughter-in-law, Stacy, and I went to a Party Store.  Harry requested a fishing theme  and  Mae could only envision her birthday as a  Princess theme.  My suggestion of combining the two separate themes to a more general underwater scene with mermaids was not going to work. No, we had to create two different themes. Off to the Party Store we went.

Party stores are one of my favorite places because I am all about creating a story, or theme, and I got all caught up in the pirate, baseball, Super Hero, and Americana themes displayed.  At one  point, I put on a pirates hat and grabbed a sword and threaten to climb aboard a cardboard display ship and steal the treasures. My silliness got the better of me but I realized quickly that I was the only one in the party store pretending to be anything other than a customer. I love party stores, they just shout CELEBRATE. I think I would be a great party store worker helping people create a party story. I would be running around trying on hats and hula skirts and entertaining customers to broaden their thinking.

At the register, Stacy unloaded several baskets of fish and princess table decorations, plates and napkins, and noise makers. I was sure this was the sale of the week, truly one a small business owner would delight in!  Stacy had done it–it was to be a wonderful Fish-Princess party and I was glad to be on the invite list.

The woman at the register failed to appreciate my excitement over what we found.  She did not smile  once while we were there and certainly NOT when I was pretending to be a pirate! Worse still, when I asked her if she had any fish-shaped balloons she sighed a deep tired-like sigh,  mumbled she doubted it but would “look in the back. ”

“Hmmm.” I thought.  “This woman obviously does not own this shop. She doesn’t love working in a party shop.”  Ten minutes later she came out and just about knocked me over when she shoved the fish balloon at me–lucky for her I did not have my pirate sword nearby!

So here is my thought. This industry likely hires  hourly workers and this woman is missing an important point about jobs that pay an hourly wage. Jim Rohn said it best when he offered,

“You don’t get paid for the hour, you get paid for the value you bring to the hour.”

The party store woman  is not being paid for the hour she works with customers but rather for the value she brings to the customer during each hour!!!  The value she  could bring is in sharing her knowledge and experience with parties and themes and putting it all together. But she didn’t share and she didn’t seem to care about the party we were planning.

So let’s all get that message clear because it surely goes well beyond one employee in a party store.  We are not recognized for the time we put on this earth, but rather for what value we add while on the earth. Life is not about being, it is about living and giving, sharing and smiling, no matter where you are. It is about the value you bring.

Women with high SUCCESSTROGEN bring value to the day, everyday. They add value by their knowledge and experience and ability to engage others to share theirs. They create,inspire, and bring value to others.

As I begin my day, I will decide where I can bring value and do it.  Have a great day, bring value!


Humpty Dumpty


While traveling recently through Atlanta airport, I saw a woman wearing a tee shirt that read, “Humpty Dumpty was pushed.”  I laughed when I first saw it, thinking it was cute–well sort of.  I truthfully have an aversion to women wearing silly phrases across their chests, but perhaps that is fodder for another blog. But I kept thinking about the message claiming Humpty Dumpty did not fall because he was distracted and forgot he was sitting on a brick wall, or due to poor balance.  I wondered who wrote that message—Was it Humpty Dumpty himself trying  to put the blame on another to avoid his embarrassment?  Or, was it written by his mother who cannot believe that after all these years people are still talking about the incident?

I don’t know if Humpty fell as the rhyme indicates, or was pushed, nor do I really care because it is just a nursery rhyme.  However, one of my greatest concerns is that we are people who make excuses for our behavior, rather than admit we did something wrong or not well enough.  Rarely do we look to ourselves when things go awry to determine what we could have done differently to achieve a better outcome.  Parents whose child is a behavior problem in school blame the teacher claiming the teacher has poor classroom management skills.   An elementary school child who looses a student council election declares that the election was “just a personality contest.” A high school basketball team might blame a game loss on the ref’s bad calls.   A tennis partner blames her team member for the loss of a point.  Underperforming sales reps blame their manager for their poor performance, and managers who are not making their quarterly numbers blame their lazy, unmotivated sales reps.  Do you see a pattern here?

I think one of the greatest gifts parents can give their children is the model of looking within oneself first when an outcome is less than anticipated. If parents modeled that behavior when talking about their jobs and what goes on in the community, perhaps children would get the idea and follow suit.  We cannot always point fingers away from us, it is time to point fingers at us.

I recently  administered a personality assessment to my students.  We discussed the virtues of each of the four possible personalities styles and then I asked the students to consider what might be potential drawbacks to their style.  Where might they be ineffective at times?  My intent was to get them to look at their own behavior and understand that sometimes what they say and do and how they say and do something is the reason that things turn sour.

Women with high SUCCESSTROGEN are not pointing fingers at others, rather they look within. They “own their own stuff” so to speak. They know when their behavior resulted in a less than desired  outcome.  They look to themselves first, and only after that reflection do they look to others involved and evaluate what occurred.  When they find that someone else in fact contributed to the imperfect outcome, they can approach the situation in a way to engage the other into understanding what happened and work towards a better future outcome.

I imagine it is difficult for an egg to sit upright on a brick wall for any length of time. I, therefore, think Humpty Dumpty fell just because he was distracted, losing sight of being on a wall. I do not think he was pushed by some rowdy neighborhood kid, nor do I think he can blame his gymnastics teacher for not working more on his balance. No, I think Humpty Dumpty just plain fell.

And you?