Recently the Defense Department sponsored an ad campaign to show how binge drinking can make you look, well … pretty stupid. It’s titled, “That Guy,” where images of young people are taken in compromising positions (drawings on face, sleeping on toilets, etc.) to show people it isn’t cool to be “That Guy.” Go to www.thatguy.com to get an eyeful of who you don’t want to be.
In my world, however; the world of being an Air Force Smart Operations for the 21st Century consultant, it is imperative that everyone be a different version of “that guy.” No, I don’t mean binge drinking. I mean being a good version of “that guy,” one who makes a good impression on those around him that is lasting, even if he feels like he may be coming across a little, well, — crazy.
As a consultant, I am passionate about my work. I am excited to offer my knowledge and services to others. When I speak with passion to others, I try to keep in mind that what I’m offering may be new and different for them. When they see me talking excitedly about how their organization can be improved upon through the implementation of the tools and knowledge I have to offer, well, it’s my hope they will listen. Even if they don’t at first, I know they heard me and hopefully they’ll remember me. Hopefully, they’ll decide to work with me the next time I see them.
This mindset can work for all of us, not just a consultant trying to peddle his wares of process improvement, but for any Airman of any specialty. Even as a student, or an Airman in upgrade training, your job is to learn. If you do that with a sense of passion, and positively seek out opportunities to learn and grow, even you will be known as “that guy.” Teachers, instructors or mentors who enthusiastically share their values and lessons learned will get a much more enthusiastic reception on the part of their students and they will be known as “that guy.”
Therefore, next time you hear yourself talking with negativity, disbelief or even condescendingly, keep in mind, you attract more flies with honey. I am not a fan of flies so I say instead, be “that guy.