Friday, June 5, 2015

Why I Love New York City

You can get by on charm for about fifteen minutes. After that, you'd better know something.  - H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

On my way to work, I frequently pass a well-known national TV journalist on the sidewalk. But wait... it gets better... I've never felt a need to stop, stare, swoon, approach him, alert the paparazzi, or turn to someone on the sidewalk next to me and say something like, Hey, do you know who just walked past us? It was that guy!

But it gets even better, again: no one else on the sidewalk feels a need to do any of those things, either. They may notice, I've noticed, but everyone just seems to keep their pace and keep walking. 

And wait again... just when you think it couldn't get any better, it gets better once more: You can tell that by the way he's moving, upright, quick paced, and without putting on any airs, he doesn't feel a need to linger on the sidewalk, waiting around for someone to notice him, stare at him, or take his photo. He's just getting on with his day - like everyone else here.

This is what I love about New York City. There's just a sense here that everyone has a life, that everyone is important enough and worthy enough in their own right, whether they're the guy that's on national television, or the guy who's sweeping up the streets. Or, the guy who's sweeping up inside of a townhouse.

An equally valued NYC citizen.
I realized this is exactly what I also love about great teams, especially the one or two really great ones I've had the honor to be a part of. Everyone had a role and everyone knew that it was valuable; and everyone knew they, themselves, were valuable and valued, too.

The better service teams I've found to be democracies, not aristocracies; they're teams where success and real worthiness are within everyone's purview, where everyone basks in the same glow of respect, whatever their role or job title. The better teams I've found are where no one has to rely on charm or attention, and where everyone is encouraged to know something.

There's certainly lots more to love about great teams, and there's lots more to love about New York City, too. But that's what I'm loving, today.