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Ordinary People

March 14, 2010

Dear colleagues,

Let us take some examples of great people in our time. They are labelled “great” because of their outstanding achievements. Let’s take Tony Hawk, Tiger Woods and Michael Jordan as our examples. Tony Hawk is one of the greatest pro-skateboarder ever. Tiger Woods is the wonder boy of golf and Michael Jordan – who doesn’t know him – is a legend in basketball.

What is so special in what they do? Nothing! Millions of people in the world skateboard, play golf and play basketball. Go to the parks on Sundays and we’ll see a lot of people skates or play basketball. More and more golf courses are build everyday to accommodate golf enthusiasts. But when we see these ordinary people do these ordinary things, we don’t call them extraordinary. The difference between Tony, Tiger and Michael, is that they do their things in extraordinary ways. They do it so well that their standard of play is way above others.

Let’s bring this “extraordinary” thing into a smaller scale, into our workplace. We may not be the only one doing our things at the office. There are sales people, managers, secretaries and many other functions. Yet, in reality, some people are more “noticed” than others, although they are of the same functions. Some sales people or managers or secretaries are known, while the rest only appear in the employee data and their names are mentioned only on payslips. In the worst cases, these ordinary people are not even recognized by the high level executives.

There are already so many “ordinary people” in the world. These are the kind of people who stay where they are from day one of work to their resignation. They do make impacts in the company, but not great enough to make impressions. They will be the last people to be considered for promotions or to be given responsibilities.

So, our points to ponder today. It is our choice whether to be noticed or not. The next time we are not chosen for promotions or bigger responsibilities, let us ask ourselves: How have we done our functions? If we still do our things in ordinary ways, then let us not blame the management for not choosing us. But of course we can change that, by starting doing things extraordinarily, by putting our hearts in what we do. One way of making ourselves noticed is by making ourselves useful and resourceful for others. The more we serve others, the more we are noticed.

Have a great week, my friends.

(Contribution of Ampunghuang R. Patriadi)

27 October 2008

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Extraordinary people are actually ordinary people, doing ordinary things, in extraordinary ways…
– ANONYMOUS –
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