I love this quote because I spent far too many years of my youth wondering if I was worth anything instead of noticing how my worth was accruing through my actions. The operative word here is “how.” Not whether we’re valuable, but in what ways we set about establishing our value to others, for others. I can hear Sean Connery’s voice, the crustiness of his Irish/Scottish brogue playing a beat cop in David Mamet’s film “The Untouchables.” “What are you prepared to DO?” he rasps. It’s a great question. Perhaps THE great question.
What are we prepared to do to create real value in a world that equates notoriety with worth? In our decadent, greed-is-good culture, can we get as excited about earning respect as we do about “earning” billion dollar windfalls? Can leadership trump celebrity? I’m giving a talk in two weeks about “being the boss” at the Woman’s Power Strategy Conference in Marin County, CA. It’s a way-big topic that’s way-too important. I’ll be talking to women and girls, for sure, but maybe some guys will be there too. I hope so, because we’re all in the same boat, practicing leadership by asking–[note the verb]–asking not what the world can do for us, but what we can do for the world. And then rolling up our sleeves and getting to work.Women’s Power Strategy Conference March 24, 2012 San Anselmo, CA