By: Matt Jordan, Director of Career Placement Solutions
When a bunch of friends and I decided to head to Aspen for the 2016 X Games, I was beyond excited. I took a few days off of work, eager to experience world-class athletes at the top of their games and have a great time. While I did have an amazing time and witness incomparable athletes at their best (and pick up some snowboarding tips), I also brought back some lessons to share with the Jordan Search Consultants’ team and apply to my career. In no particular order, they are as follows:
One of the women in our group had broken her leg right before the X Games. Instead of making her trek from venue to venue
on crutches, they provided a wheelchair—complete with tread for the wintery conditions. The organizers of the event didn’t
have to do that; our group contained no celebrities. But they did, and it made a huge impression. Empathy is something we discuss a lot at Jordan Search Consultants…how important it is to truly be able to put yourself in the shoes of an administrator or candidate. When you can truly understand the saliency of filling a department chair position with the right physician—or of matching a candidate in a hospital near their family—you are motivated to perform at a higher level.
Tier Service=Brand Longevity
Let me go back to the all-road-conditions courtesy, wheelchair for just one second. Not only did the X Games staff provide our friend with this chair, but they also made sure we were granted priority access to all of the events. We were escorted from competition to competition, given front-section seating, and received continuous check-ins to ensure she was comfortable. They went out of their way to make sure our group, despite her condition, had an unforgettable time. After our group returned home, I found myself telling everyone about the service at the X Games…that is what had made an indelible impression. And I found myself thinking that when JSC clients receive this over-the-top service execution, they can’t help but become walking mouthpieces for our brand—and continuous referral sources. Motivation to always strive to provide a higher level of service? You bet.
Preparation is the #1 Competitive Advantage
Some of the X Games events last a total of 25 minutes. When you put that in the context of the extreme training these athletes dedicate themselves to year-after-year, it boggles the mind. All of that training comes down to a 25-minute event. You either perform or you don’t, right? That’s what I thought, too, until I looked at these athletes’ faces afterwards. Regardless of how they performed, they looked…satisfied. It reminded me of what I say to my candidates when I prep them for an interview—decision-makers will evaluate you based on your short time spent with them, even though you may have been preparing for months. Regardless of what happens in that room, on that day, you are a better interviewee and candidate because of the preparation. What’s more? Because of that preparation, you have a significant competitive advantage and will land a position that is right for you.
Just some food for thought as we close the first quarter of 2016. How are these observations useful for you in your career?