This past Saturday I attended my monthly meeting of the Sons of the American Revolution. The program was fascinating. It was about the fife and drum corp during the Revolutionary War and how their music was part of the strategic plan for the army. I also learned that many colloquialisms emerged from that corp.
For instance, “marching to the beat of your own drum” comes originally from that time. You see, the drums would announce all movements and activities to the soldiers. They were told when to wake up, when to eat, when to march, when to go to bed, and everything in between based on the drum beat. When the drum “called,” they jumped into action! So when one marches to beat of their own drum, it implies someone that doesn’t fall into ranks and goes their own way. Basically, it’s your original outlier.
Many people march to the beat of someone else’s drum whether they recognize it or not – By acquiescing to conformity for fear of failure or rejection; by staying in a dead end job or career because it’s they don’t think they can’t do anything else; by doing the same activities every single day just out of rote repetition – these are all examples of marching to someone else’s drum without questioning why.
No matter what your career – entrepreneur, executive or employee – you get to beat your own drum. Succumbing to conventionality without considering your own talents, skills, and passions will relegate you to being mired in a trap that is difficult to get out of.
Maybe it’s a good thing for all of us to occasionally check and see to whose drum we are listening to, and if it’s time to turn the beat around.
~ Ernest Hemingway
No Weedin Unleashed today. I have business in Seattle and have opted to take my lovely and talented wife out to lunch. We will return to the airwaves next Monday. Thanks for your understanding!
I started Saturday morning packing my golf bag and duffel bag and heading to Seattle via the ferry to play golf at beautiful Harbour Pointe Golf Course in Mukilteo. My friend Dave picked me up on the other side on a glorious day and we headed over for 18 holes in my Washington Athletic Club tournament. After the round, I scarfed down a turkey sandwich and beer and then like Superman in the telephone booth, changed into my “symphony” clothes. My wife Barb was herding cats by bringing my two daughters, my 87-year old mother, and our Rotary foreign exchange student over to Seattle to meet me for the playing of the Wizard of Oz with the Seattle Symphony in the background. Dave dropped me off at exactly the same time they arrived, we went to dinner at Wolfgang Puck’s, and then spent the evening re-visiting Oz. The next day, we got up early after a late night, went to morning Mass, and then hit it out to Barb’s parents for a day trip and visit. Whew! I’m waiting for Monday to relax!
Active minds and bodies are essential to living a well-rounded life. Sometimes maybe a little frantic, but always good to keep the brain synapses popping (or whatever they do). Staying active both physically and mentally is the real fountain of youth. It also is the “stuff” that a healthy life is made of. I encourage you to find ways in your busy professional life to add plenty of balance with a healthy dose of activity. It’s good for the body, mind, and soul…
This week’s quote – “You don’t have a professional life and a personal life. You simply have a life…”
– Alan Weiss, author of Million Dollar Consulting
Barb and I attended the Seattle Symphony with friends this past weekend. It was the first one I’ve been to, and I walked away with a much greater appreciation of the role of the conductor.
I certainly knew that the conductor was the maestro, the leader. However, watching in person I really got an “up close and personal” view of the importance of the conductor. Gerard Schwartz was vibrant, charismatic, seemed to be one with the music, and exacted a real presence for his team. I always thought the conductor was most important in practice, however I stand corrected. He is also critical to an amazing performance as he leads with his personality and passion.
Business leaders lead with personality and passion, too. Or at least they’d better! Whichever way they go, it’s obvious to everyone else both internally and externally. Like a great symphony conductor, a leader is the maestro for his or her organization. Their team will follow based on their vibrancy, charisma, and presence.
This week’s quote – “A leader is a dealer in hope.”
– Napoleon Bonaparte