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When Scottish comedian, Billy Connolly, was contemplating leaving the docklands of Glasgow to start a career as a musician, Bugsy, one of the older workers asked him when he was going to quit his day job.

After discussing the peril of delaying his departure, the older man said,

“Believe me, there’s nothing worse than being an old man, still in here, thinking about what you could have done if you had got out when you were young.”

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It seems obvious that a doctor who cares will be able to provide a better standard of care to her patients.

And a leader with passion will be much more effective at influencing the people around him.

A chef who loves cooking will be able to deliver a higher level of flavour and presentation.

And a customer service representative who smiles and engages with her clients will be able to create memorable and positive experiences.

An enthusiastic teacher can inspire an entire classroom.

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Humans have a range of unique abilities.

To tell compelling stories that connect.

To listen to the wonderful stories of others.

To display empathy.

To genuinely care.

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There was a time when employees committed to an organisation for life.

They went to work, got their job done, dusted themselves off and went home.

What they did there didn’t really matter.

What matters is that they turned up and did what they were supposed to do.

They followed the manual, they did it by the book.

But that’s changed.

We’re no longer committed to an organisation for life.

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Every workplace has them.

Cautionary tales of the guy who got too drunk at last year’s Christmas party.

Or the sales rep who never make any calls, but fudged her reports.

Or the guy from accounting who got caught pinching pennies.

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With my recent change in roles, I was considering what changes I would need to make to my LinkedIn profile.

As a part of my new role is “leading a team of about 20 people.”

But that didn’t seem sufficient.  Something was missing.

Then it dawned on me.

It should read, “leading a team of about 20 awesome people.”

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Crackers by themselves aren’t all that inspiring.

They’re dry and bland and don’t do a lot for me.

But add a nice peppersweet or roast capsicum dip and it’s game on.

They come alive.

Those little round biscuits become a party in my mouth (OK, that’s a bit over the top, but I really, really like them).

You may feel as though your job is like those crackers.

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Every office has a guy like Bob.

He’s Mr Average.

He’s always the last to arrive and the first to leave.

He has longer coffee breaks than anyone else.

If there’s a tough team deadline to achieve, you can almost guarantee that he’ll call in sick.

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What you do every day is not just a job.

It’s an opportunity to further develop your skills.

It’s a chance to stimulate your brain and solve challenging problems.

It’s an opportunity to add value to the people around you, to make them smile, to help them to feel better about themselves.

It’s a chance to build resilience when the going gets tough.

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I’ve worked in roles where I didn’t quite fit in.

The culture wasn’t quite right for me and I wasn’t spending my energy on activities that matched my skills.

It was a great place, with great people, but it wasn’t right for me, certainly not in the long-term.

I was a square peg trying to fit into a round hole.

Is that you?

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