Morning Podcast Inspiration
This morning, when I was listening to David Neagle’s podcast, he dropped a gem about loving what you do, whatever it is that you do.
It whisked me back in time to my 17-year-old self, knee-deep in letters and envelopes in the mailroom at a Fortune 10 company.
Yep, it was as glamorous as it sounds!
Open, sort, deliver, repeat.
(Mind you, I controlled that mail room all by myself and hell yes I was proud of it!)
Setting My Own Pace
From day one, I spiced things up.
Inspired by my previous mail-mentor who told me I’d only make about four runs of my route a day, I set up personal time trials to push the envelope (no pun intended…actually, a little intended).
The mission? Beat the record, every single day.
My “arena” stretched across a complex network of tunnels, bridges, and sidewalks linking multiple DuPont buildings (oh, the 80s in Wilmington!).
I honed my skills by studying traffic light timings and elevator peak times. Fast forward a month, and I had an extra five hours daily in my pocket and a super-gamified job that I loved.
Snail Mail Olympics
Next up? Snail mail free-throws.
Imagine a wall of mail slots – my targets.
I marked my starting point in tape a couple feet back from the slots and practiced my mail-tossing arm until I got to a 99% success rate, without having any mail falling out.
I challenged myself to the same success rate, moving back foot by foot, until I reached a 10-feet distance with about a 15% error rate.
Fun? Hell yes!
And guess what?
This exercise turned out to be a precursor to a skill I’d later treasure: minimizing error rates.
And because of me, we were able to gamify that job for the next people who came in with some really cool ideas to make this job fun.
Delivering More Than Just Mail
Beyond my mail-throwing shenanigans, I had bigger ambitions.
I had my eyes set on the desk where the real magic happened – handling paperwork and claims.
So, what did I do?
I built rapport, went the extra mile (literally), and ensured every envelope delivered was ready to be dived into.
I started getting to know the person behind that desk.
If I just slit the envelope at the top before I got there, it would make their work a ton easier.
And then I realized if I took it out of the envelope and made it so that just the flap was holding the mail, it would make it even easier than that!
So, study the people who are doing what you dream of doing and figure out what you can do to up your game.
You’ll be noticed as the next logical person to do that job – and you’ll already know the ins and outs of it.
Now, I wish I could say I bagged that coveted desk job right away…but the universe had other plans.
My next adventure?
Assisting my buddy Carlin in microfilming (if you don’t know what that is, think of it as ancient document storage). We turned the task into a playful race, adding yet another chapter of fun to my job chronicles.
Embrace the Game!
Here’s the deal, champions. The beauty of entrepreneurship is making even the mundane magnificent. Apply these principles:
- Find Joy in the Mundane: With a dash of creativity, transform tasks into delightful challenges.
- Stay Visionary: Always have your eyes on the prize. Research, innovate, and stand out.
- Own It with Passion: Whatever your role, embrace it with zest. If I can love the mailroom, you can find joy anywhere.
So, entrepreneurs, grab that task you’ve been dreading and ask yourself:
Can you delegate?
If not, how can you sprinkle some fun on it?
I didn’t feel like I was settling in the mailroom at all because I made it fun, and I made it mine.
It became something that brought me joy to come in and do every day.
And as entrepreneurs, what more could we possibly want but to have joy every day when we get up and tackle the problems, the issues, the opportunities that we have on our plate?