More than Just

“If we left, they wouldn’t have nobody. We were just the cook and the janitor…”Miguel Alvarez

Miguel Alvarez and Maurice Rowland, image from StoryCorps
Miguel Alvarez and Maurice Rowland, image from StoryCorps

No, sir, you are not “just” a job title. You are more than JUST anything. Listen to the story from NPR’s StoryCorps and see if you agree:
Maurice and Miguel’s story

I believe people vastly underestimate their power to be transformative. This story is a perfect (and moving) example of that.

I was co-facilitating a session the other day and one of the participants said “This is above my pay grade.” To which I said, “No. Not here, not today it’s not.” But what I should have said was NOT ever.

We’re really great as humans at putting up imaginary barriers built with fear and assumption, or accepting those put up by others. These emotions, the left-unsaids are sand bags stacking up over time, building up those walls. But they can be undone with open communication, persistence and courage.

I see this most often in the informational interviews I conduct – dozens per year – in which I hear people talk about feeling trapped in a bad company culture which they feel they cannot change. But I see it in myself at times, in those that I love. I see it all over. And I just want to shout:

YOU! All of you! You are more than just…