You are Paid to Show Up

March 3, 20150 Comments

Your skills are important to a lot of people. Other people depend upon your contributions. And, if you have made a commitment to your employer (to do a particular job) then you are expected to be there and perform that job. If you don’t show up, you might be jeopardizing the efforts of your entire team. Or worse, you may have single handedly ground everything to a halt.
I’ve heard so many executives complain that their team members don’t show up. They “call in sick” or say, “I can’t get there in time because of…” (You pick the excuse). If this sounds like you, your absence may be forgiven but you won’t be forgotten. Leaders remember that became unreliable. Leaders remember that you didn’t get someone “to cover for you” when your tasks were necessary to a deadline. Leaders remember that you didn’t try to stay in touch via email, text, or Skype (these days you are always available ‘virtually’ – even in you’re in bed with a fever). Athletes routinely “play hurt” and find time to recover when the game is over.
What about weather delays? No excuse. Recently I had a speaking engagement in Boston, MA. The client had posted my picture in their conference program and the session was 100% full. Coming from the west coast, I has a stopover in Chicago but my flight to Boston was cancelled due to 25 inches of snow in a 24-hour period. (Their worst blizzard in 35 years). In fact, 1,500 flights were cancelled. Working with my business manager, we kept our client in constant contact re: our solutions (not our troubles). We scoured all options and found an 11:00pm flight into Washington, DC. From there, we explored train options to Boston and other possible flights connecting through Buffalo, NYC, and Detroit. All options would be cutting it very close. At 6:00am the next morning I got the last seat on a random flight to Boston. By not giving up, I got to the Marriott Copley Place with time to spare. It would have been very understandable for me to tell the client, “With this blizzard, I just can’t get there in time.” But by making the effort to show up under seemingly impossible circumstances, I proved I was relentless, dependable, reliable, and someone who could be counted on to deliver; even when life was out of everyone’s control. The next time someone is expecting you, move mountains to be there. Your boss or client will be astounded. And something better than you can imagine might happen…like surprising yourself.
Ross Shafer is the author of the new book, ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY – Bulletproof Tactics for Putting Yourself in High Demand. He is also the author of Nobody Moved Your Cheese, Are You Relevant, Grab More Market Share, and The Customer Shouts Back. Ross is a busy keynote speaker and 6-time Emmy winner for his work as a comedian, talk show host, and writer.

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