People around me know that I’m not afraid to give ‘it’ away. What I don’t think I’ve been very good at is expressing why. In September of 2019, I participated in the Landmark Advanced Course which helped me to gain clarity around this. I’d like to share that why with you here.
When I decided to create flowww sites – Kayak's sub-brand for smaller businesses – it was with the very clear understanding that some Kayak clients or prospects would opt to take the small budget path offered there, and that there was an equal chance those decisions could negatively impact our core business activities, revenue, and our ability to attract and retain talent.
I proceeded anyway.
What drove me to do so is rooted in my desire to help others grow and prosper. From the way we dig into our Kayak clients’ “Why” through our marketing program, to the 1:1 delivery of our coaching sessions, and even the selection of topics I’ve blogged about over the years, all can be connected to that core desire.
It's rooted in my past from which I’ve shared snippets with some of you from time to time. From leaving home at a very young age, to becoming homeless at 16, through the torturous battle to survive cancer in my early 40s, and even the events that led to the launch of Kayak in 2011.
Those life experiences impact every decision I make, just as your own experiences undoubtedly impact yours. It’s all part of being human. We experience and respond, then we grow or we shrink.
We experience and respond, then we grow or we shrink.
In my mind, the desire to help others grow and prosper connects me to my early teens as a lost soul. Wandering from family to family, friend to friend, and having run out of those, to ultimately arrive on the streets. It was a time of nothingness. Of escape and alienation, of loneliness and despair.
While writing these words shake me even now and give rise to powerful emotions, I’m reminded that there was something else as well, bigger. I felt powerless.
Everyone around me was as poor and in nothingness as I was. I don’t mean poor as in the I-can’t-afford-to-go-to-a-movie way, but in a where-can-I-find-some-food-today kind of way. It was a struggle for survival of the highest order.
Amidst that struggle was a very curious thing. Community. We may have been a motley crew made up of prostitutes, drug addicts, drug suppliers, and the lost. But we were one. The harder life threw things at us, the stronger our bond became. It was the glue that held my mind together. It made me stronger that I could have ever imagined.
I’ve grown to understand that Community created through Generosity leads to Prosperity. And that it is core to my being. I can’t imagine not working to make it possible for others to grow. I’m committed in my heart and in my soul to that outcome.
Doing everything I can to make that happen is my reason for being on this earth. I know that when I die, having done so will make my life one worth living. And, that I will have responded with gusto to that voice in my head during the deepest and darkest moments of my cancer battle, when I screamed silently – and deafeningly – in my mind that, “I HAVEN’T ACCOMPLISHED ENOUGH YET!”
Doing everything I can to make that happen is my reason for being on this earth.
I’m sharing this not to have you respond, but to express more meaningfully the reasons behind why I do that things that I do, and what sits behind my vision of success for my businesses and the people we serve.
With greatest respect and appreciation for our community, thank you from the bottom of my heart for being on this journey with me. And if you can find the strength to share, I'd love to know more about your vision as well.