Note: I’m writing a note of gratitude on the blog each day in November leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday. My hope is that these posts will inspire you to do the same. Write an email, Facebook post, or a text to tell people they have made an impact on you. Gratitude is contagious.
As I reflect on my life, I can point to a handful of specific conversations that changed things for me. One of those happened a little over two years ago with Jeff Havens.
Jeff is a fellow keynote speaker who is very successful. If you don’t know about Jeff, visit his site. He’s funny and smart and has a style that’s unique and memorable. He’s also a really good writer. Sign up for his newsletter and you’ll see what I mean.
I’d seen Jeff out on the speaking circuit years before we met. And if I’m honest, I wanted not to like him. His presentation style is quite different than mine and he’s really good at making people laugh. I think I was probably jealous of him and my insecurity at the time told me I shouldn’t like him.
But as fate would have it, we ended up being represented by the same agent, the amazing Donna Buttice. She introduced us and suggested that we talk.
As it turns out, Jeff is a genuinely nice and gracious guy. It was impossible for me not to like him.
In our first conversation, we spent some time comparing notes and talking about our journeys as speakers. When Jeff described to me how he had scaled and managed his speaking business, it sounded a lot like what I aspired to build.
The challenge I’d been facing is that I hadn’t really understood how the business worked and was missing a business model that would make it work. Jeff seemed to have the answer.
Lucky for me, Jeff operates from an abundance mindset. Despite the fact that we sometimes might compete for the same job, Jeff shared some amazing and poignant advice with me.
That conversation set me down the path I am now traveling. His advice gave me the nudge and the confidence to go all in on being a speaker and author. What an amazing gift that I will probably never be able to adequately repay.
Since that conversation, we’ve collaborated on a few things and have done some mutual promotion. It’s been a lesson in abundance and playing what Simon Sinek has labeled the “infinite game.”
Jeff, thank you for your generosity and wisdom. You have had a profound impact on my career and life. I look forward to repaying the favor as we navigate this crazy business in the future.