Every now and then it is time to take stock on where you have got to in life, how you feel about it, and what you are going to do about it. Well, some prefer to skip one or all of the above, but everyone kind of thinks of them at one point or another. They cross your mind while you are thinking about how much your pay rise might be, how you are going to afford your first house, send your kids to school, buy that really nice Audi…
Every now and then you also get a choice of a different kind. The kind of choice that much more quickly defines who you are, who you want to be. It isn’t to do with cars and handbags, it’s to do with personal choices. We sometimes forget about them but personal choices are those small tiny things that are within your control, when so many things in life are outside of your control. Personal decisions are what define you today, not tomorrow, not that person you are going to become in 10 years, but right now. They make you who you are. Aside from Karma, there is no eventual retribution for what you do to other people in life. Or is there?
Becoming who you want to be
While my aim is to help people reach their potential every day, I think we often forget that the fastest route to being who you want to be, is right there in the decisions you make every day, often through their affect on others. While you are busy becoming what you want to be, you can be who you are along the way, and in many ways gives more transparent reward. It is easy to fall into the trap of thinking you can get away with things, but instinctively people sense whether they can trust someone or not. And what do you think happens as a result of that? Your life gets easier or harder as a result. One of the hardest things in business and in life is when you see things being done around you which don’t suit your professional and moral standards. There are always choices to make. Do you join them? Become one of them? It can be hard. Watch the The Wolf of Wall Street.
Performance is one thing, but it is quite another when ‘performance’ is achieved through Ponzi schemes, wrappers which disguise, miss-selling, re-packaging, or blatant back-handers where someone basically loses out, usually in someone else’s favour. The difference is that real performance takes courage and is achieved through hard work, intelligence, and commitment among many other things. The latter is achieved only through desire to do materially better than everyone else, using methods that out-perform the market, because those methods involve deception and are largely unfair, anti-competitive, or plain illegal. Those methods are not normally high-performing, they don’t have to be.
Having a relationship
At Funds Partnership we made a choice some time ago to work with companies who had high standards of professional conduct. We believe in high performance companies, because we are one. We don’t need to use the kind of tactics I hear about sometimes. The many businesses who work with us, often exclusively, do so often without even having a ‘exclusivity’ contract in place. We don’t need one. The contract we have is called Trust. We don’t to tie our clients into contracts which they can’t escape from, because they come back anyway, because we are good. If they decide one day that we aren’t anymore, I’m sure they will leave, and having a contract in place is hardly likely to stop them. It’s called having a relationship.
In your job, in your life, you have choices every day. Those among us that are richest are the people who have realised that they can be exactly who they want to be just through the use of their actions. They realise their power. In return, they have the integrity, balance, and the pride every day of who they are and what they do. They have nothing to hide. They are the winners. So it turns out you don’t need to wait for Karma at all.