If anyone, it could be my friend Jackie. I met her in 2003 when I was appointed president of AOL Worldwide Advertising Sales, and she was number two, as I recall, in the promotion department. I've probably been in her company a couple of hundred times since then and I must admit, I did see her without a smile...once. She was actually crying on that occasion. A senior manager publicly berated her, for no sensible reason, and it so took Jackie by surprise that the tears flowed. I think Jackie presumed everyone was at least as nice as she is, so how could that have happened?
My friend is a VP at an important digital agency today, and probably has more "friends" on Facebook than Steve Case, and they are really are, her friends that is. I got a new form email from her last week under the headline, "Jackie's Job Referrals." She had three opportunities listed. I called and asked her what her arrangements were with the headhunters or companies she was recruiting for. "No arrangement, Bob. A lot of folk are out of work and need help, and many are my friends. So I try to put them together with people with job listings."
If Jackie wanted to sell, I could place her in about 11 seconds, probably at one of our companies. It's impossible not to like, and impossible not to trust her. She's very smart, creative, and absolutely selfless.
This executive loves promotion and she comes up with terrific ideas all the time. Her agency clients, her colleagues at the agency and the army of sellers, her army really, love their interaction with her, seek ideas from, and bring ideas to her. Everybody wins when Jackie's involved. She loves, I mean loves her work. And so she's always working. Keeping up with her is no small trick. When on those rare occasions she calls for help (perhaps a charitable interest for which she needs some support) you wind up grateful for the opportunity to demonstrate your appreciation for her.
I'm sure that Jackie makes a good living and before she is done will have made an extraordinary living. And that will happen naturally as a result of her commitment to the success of others. She loves her work because she loves helping people and has several constituencies she can practice that love on in her line of work.
If you are where you are today, because you've sacrificed satisfaction, and measure your degree of success solely by your paycheck, regardless of its size, Jackie has it better than you, and consequently does her job, better than you do yours.
It's not too late. Take a deep breath and go find something you can love!
Love Your Work and Work Tirelessly
Communicate Honestly and Fearlessly
Serve, Don't Sell
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