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Creating World Class

This week was another week away from the guitar build. It’s just that kind of year. It may seem like I’m complaining, but I’m not. I’ve been extremely blessed to have so many wicked destinations. From travelling to Beijing multiple times; visiting a friend in Memphis and side trip to New Orleans; spending quality time with Family in Fairmont BC ; San Diego for a work related conference and connecting with other fellow project controllers from all over the world; a possibility of travelling to Bermuda; and eventually seeing South America, Colombia - Sally’s motherland. All of the travelling amidst the commitment we have with the GuitarBorn Project is a lot. It’s incredible how much one can accomplish when the work is put through.

As we embark on another journey of attracting Telus Storyhive Grant dollars, at times it seems impossible to do what we need to accomplish our goals. But it seems to just...happen. I’ve alluded that we have a stellar team, but more than just words, they get it done, they do what they say.

During my conference we had a keynote speaker that was suppose teach us the secrets and powers of marketing. However, that speaker was held in Pennsylvania and couldn’t attend. I was worried that we would get a sub-par speaker. Alhtough, there is always a silver lining in any bad situation. We were blessed with a speech by a local coach and speaker, a marketing crowd funding guru Clay Herbert. The premise of his speech was about introductions. When someone asks, "what do you do?", we often struggle or say something that relates to what makes us money; we somewhat define ourselves as ‘how we make money’. I learned a tremendous amount in this speech. That introductions should be flexible and 'in the moment' for the person whom you are speaking with. Simplicity is key. Intrigue over information is key. It’s supposed to start a conversation, create a human connection.

There is a simple formula for this introduction. It’s short and dissected into 3 parts. The structure goes something like this:

1. Emphasize the word HELP as in ‘I help’ or ‘we help’ or perhaps another word for help.

2. Say WHO it is that you help.

3. Add the RESULT you are trying to achieve.

So looking at all aspects in my life I was compelled to write these introductions.

For my personal intro:

I support creative people in bringing life to their ideas.

For REGINO guitars:

We build your songs out of wood.

For my day job:

I support project managers in making the right decisions.

Lastly for Guitarborn, and this is one I once struggled with as it’s happened before when we are asked what is this about, we say “ummmm” “ahhhh” and then we ramble on about details no one really cares about.

So to use the formula and distill in a simple phrase:

GuitarBorn is a story about inspiring creatives to get unstuck.

It’s intriguing, it ignites a human connection and people should want to know more...I hope.

The soft skill lesson that I learned at this highly technical conference was absolute gold; probably the most valuable lesson. In fact I noted that the other professionals were toying around with this concept and it became the catalyst for conversation and building of new relationships.

So even though I'm away from the guitar build, I’m still finding ways to contribute. Even though small, it’s all about those incremental improvements over time. I’m on the plane as I write this blog. Finally on my way back home to reunite with the team and finish the Storyhive application, to continue the build towards world class.

-- Cliff

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