I happened to watch an ESPN show that told the story of John Calipari, basketball coach for the University of Kentucky. One of the video clips in the story showed him being recognized for all his accomplishments and success. During his remarks, he said something that struck me. He said he saw himself successful not as winning so many games or national championships, but as a “dream fulfiller.” He explained that his players aspired to play in the NBA and he was committed to getting them there. All the sacrifice that he and his players made were to actualize his players’ dreams of turning pro.
What struck me about his comment was that it accurately describes what you do. You put forth a tremendous amount of effort in serving your clients, going the extra mile, staying late, and making sure things are correct. Sometimes your clients recognize your efforts, and when they do, it makes your sacrifices worthwhile. You are a “dream fulfiller” for them.
Think about it. Your clients don’t engage you just because they like you, or feel sorry for you, or feel obligated to you. They engage you because they see you as contributing to their success—fulfilling their dreams.
Of course, that assumes you know about their dreams. Do you even know what your clients’ dreams are? Have you ever asked? If you don’t know, then your clients are likely to see you as a necessary inconvenience rather than a fulfiller of their dreams. You and your team must see yourselves as integral to your clients’ success AND your clients must see you that way.
This week, for the projects you are working on, make sure you and your team know the dreams you are fulfilling. This will make all your sacrifices worthwhile and worth the effort.