What do superstars Taylor Swift and Michael Jordan have in common? Well, for starters, they’ve both gone on record as not wanting to be average. And most people would agree they rank as top achievers in their fields. Taylor says, “I’m intimidated by the fear of being average.” And Michael echoes that same refrain — “All I know is that I never wanted to be average.”
After seeing the cover of our guest speaker’s book, Average is an Addiction, I’ve been thinking about the phenomenon and googling the topic of “average.” The experts seem to agree that high achievers have particular attributes besides talent and intelligence that make them excel.
Deborah Dubree, our keynote speaker, has a lot to say about being average, in her book, and in her presentation today. Deborah appears anything but average. But years ago, she started out with low expectations for herself. Armed with a high school diploma, she took a job as a receptionist but after six months was bored to tears. Urged to apply for an upcoming promotion with the construction division of the company (come over to the dark side, they said), and knowing nothing about accounting, or construction for that matter, Deborah applied, interviewed for a position that appeared to require both, and was hired. The rest, as they say, is history.
Deborah has learned so much over the years about success. She wrote a whole book about being average after she observed many truly talented and educated people somehow fell just short of success, often when they were teetering on the brink of a breakthrough. She wondered why.
Deborah began her career as a receptionist, but gradually through research on herself, and research on success, came to be known as an expert. She received numerous certifications, educated herself in the science of the brain, and finally pursued her role coaching NFL players and others who wanted to stand out from the crowd.
People fundamentally make three mistakes, Deborah says.
- They wonder why what they’re doing isn’t enough. But have they stayed focused, identified who they are and taken meaningful action? Have they learned their strengths and tapped into how to reach “the zone,” that often illusive peak performance high?
- They complain, “But I’m not average.” But everyone has areas where they’re average. It’s just not possible to be average in your chosen field if you’re going to be successful, though.
- They settle for False focus. For example, in the job search, if you focus only on resume, LinkedIn profile, business attire, professional photo and research, those are comfortable and don’t necessarily lead to that great job. While these areas are important, the bulk of your time is better spent in riskier areas like attending events, making phone calls, engaging in impromptu conversation, doing interviews, and making follow-up calls.
You have to know what you believe, and if your beliefs are justified, and then stay focused.
Lots of people out there are talented, Deborah reminds us. But the thing key that makes the difference is successful people handle stressful situations well and manage their emotions. They also take meaningful action because they have a plan.
Deborah’s challenge to everyone in attendance: Go out there and do ONE THING that scares you. When you’ve taken risks and succeeded, despite fear, then you’ll wonder, “If I can do this, what else can I do?”
When Deborah first entered her career as a coach, someone suggested she first talk to high school athletes. But she said, “No, I want to work with NFL players.” Sometimes you’ve gotta take a LEAP, she stresses. “Sometimes just a slight pivot” at the right time can take your career higher than you’d ever imagined.
More Tips from Deborah (but only if you want to be a high achiever)
Tame and Train your BEAST
B Beliefs impact our behavior. Make sure you know what your beliefs are, including beliefs about yourself.
E Emotion All decisions are based on emotions. So be able to manage your emotions and therefore mange stress.
A Acute Awareness—This includes being aware of yourself and others.
S Self Identify Who are you?
T Talk and Walk Body language and verbal language are equally important.
The 7 Cs of Excellence
International Cruise & Excursions, Inc. (ICE)
Jason Brambier, Corporate Recruiter
International Cruise & Excursions, Inc. (ICE), a global travel and leisure organization, provides cruise and vacation fulfillment services. Headquartered in Scottsdale, the company has been awarded Best Places to Work 2013 and 2014 by The Phoenix Business Journal and the Spirit of Enterprise Innovator Award by the ASU W.P. Carey School of Business. The culture there is casual and offers numerous perks including onsite wellness clinic, onsite massage therapists, free onsite Fitness Center and so much more. Employing both inbound and outbound sales for all vacation travel, other non-sales positions currently open include software engineers, member marketing, graphic designer, help desk analyst, and creative director. For a complete list of positions and to apply, visit their website.
Nick Bielinski, Technical Recruiter
TEKsystems specializes in staffing for technical positions but they can point non-tech job seekers in the right direction since they are part of the family of Allegis, the largest private talent firm in the world. TEKsystems offers the largest global network of credentialed IT professionals. Recruiters in the company, dedicated to specific skills sets, also actively engage with the community so they share market knowledge with job seekers including who is hiring and who’s experiencing hiring freezes. Positions available through the company include project managers, business analysts, network engineers, QA engineers and more. For more information on their staffing services or to submit your resume, visit their website.
Curtis Crawford, Sr.Talent Adviser
Charles Schwab believes in the power of investing for everyone. The company services investors, advisors and employers. Headquartered in San Francisco, Schwab employs 15,400 full-time employees and has received 15 awards in 2015 for their employee-friendly workplace. Opportunities in Phoenix include the broker training program, relationship specialist, and estate services professional operations. The culture of the company is strength-based and offers everyday wellness, employee resource groups and employee development programs. To apply, visit their website, submit your resume, and answer qualifying questions. After those steps, a recruiter will review your resume and qualifying questions and contact you if there’s a strong match.
New Horizons Learning Center
Zack Hiscock, VP Learning & Development
New Horizons Learning Center is one of several State-of-the-Art Training Facilities which teams with Career Connectors to offer training to adults upgrading their skills or adults seeking to gain competitive skills in their job search. Located in Phoenix near the airport, the school offers three modalities for training including traditional, instructor-led classroom training, online LIVE learning, and online ANYTIME learning. They offer a six-month free retake policy on all classes and boast four brand new classrooms and a virtual lab. Classes include information technology, office management, healthcare records, PMP, and Six Sigma, to name a few. After classes are completed, the school also helps students find a job. For more information on classes or funding, visit their website.
Jessica Pierce, Executive Director for Career Connectors, thanked attendees, hiring companies, volunteers, and host for the event, Highlands Church. She announced that after the break, informal breakout sessions would give participants an opportunity to meet hiring managers, receive free professional head shot photos, and talk to experts about resume writing and LinkedIn.
The next Career Connectors event will be held in two weeks due to the calendar this time.
- The very next event will be held Tuesday, June 28, 2016, at 9:00 AM in Gilbert.
- The next Phoenix event is scheduled for Wednesday, July 6, 201, at 9:00 AM.
- The very next Scottsdale event will be held Thursday, July 14, 2016, at 9:00 AM and will feature keynote speaker Kevin Dumcum on the topic “LinkedIn’s Power of Connection.”
For detailed information or to register for any or all events, click here.