[If you’d like to listen to an audio version of this blog post please click here: https://soundcloud.com/lex-mckee/putting-people-first and if you’d like to watch a video please click here: https://youtu.be/I4ycjOq-_ZI]
A young shop-assistant at Dixons in Uxbridge had no idea how much the course of his life would be changed by a company training programme…
Yes, it was me. Dixons sent me off on a two-day programme where I had my first encounter with Corporate Training… and probably my best encounter too. Two charismatic entertrainers, from Time Manager International, introduced me to Neuro Linguistic Programming and Transactional Analysis all in the service of putting people FIRST.
Filled with enthusiasm, I couldn’t wait to get back to the branch and put the customer first.
I had a shock. The manager told me, in no uncertain terms, that he was only interested in one thing – money in the till! But there is nothing more dangerous than an idea whose time has come – and I was transformed.
Funny how we forget, isn’t it? Years later, and after months of misery, I finally had a good few days where I didn’t think I’d be better off dead. They weren’t days of material wealth – far from it – rather, they were days of Putting People First. People… with stories.
All of their stories reminded me of the power of a person with a perceived purpose!
Monday was Jolly Jodie who genuinely gets excited about insurance. Why? Because she can often improve people’s appropriate cover for less money. She makes a difference.
Tuesday was Sparky Sandi whose early career was on the buses in London – and who had achieved this after a childhood marred by double-curvature of the spine - meaning that she had to wear the horrific Milwaukee Brace 23 hours out of every 24. Having transformed her suffering into purpose, she now pursues the mental wellbeing mission within organisations.
Wednesday was Elegant Eliot, an IFA with his own story of breakthroughs against frightening odds. And here’s the point – behind his obvious material success, a man who looks like he’s got everything going for him, there’s a story of struggle… the mess behind the masterpiece.
(Of course, lunch by the sea with Generous Jacqui and Elegant Eliot also helped make the day rather special!)
Thursday was my own turn to be interviewed - by the Lovely Linda. Linda’s a writer too – with a podcast for writers, so it was an effortless and enthusiastic stream of consciousness shared between wordsmiths.
Friday… back to what I have come to expect as ‘normal’! But like the “Putting People First” programme, it was too late. I realised people (one-to-one – not in crowds) give me energy when we get behind the published version of themselves to the stories behind.
Those who know me, know my intense preference for introversion. This doesn’t mean, though, that I don’t like people. Genuinely authentic encounters with people are like books come to life. Stories are enchanting, uplifting, inspiring.
Who could you take time out with this week to listen to their stories? Moodscope is an excellent example of Putting People First. Tell us YOUR story…
A Moodscope member.