Rusty's Corner: Knowing Your 'Why' Gives Your 'What' More Impact

I once read a tale by John Maxwell of someone who came across 3 bricklayers working. The man asked the first bricklayer what he was doing. "I'm setting bricks," the worker replied. He then asked the second bricklayer the same question. "I'm putting up a wall," he said. The passerby then asked the question one more time, this time to the third bricklayer. The response: "I'm building a cathedral."

As this story illustrates, 3 different workers can do the exact same task, but with widely varying reasons. The first sounds to have worked primarily for the paycheck. He saw his work as a task that needed to be completed, regardless of the outcome. When 5pm came, he was on the way out.
The second was likely motivated by a sense of completion and was proud that his bricklaying would result in the construction of a wall. Perhaps he would add a few extra minutes here and there in order to see the goal to completion.
However, the third had a larger vision and purpose. He seemed driven by a deep desire to build something with a larger impact on their community - a worship center. Every brick was a step towards a greater vision and purpose. No doubt that such a person would go beyond expectations; and would get more satisfaction out of the finished product as well.

Our company has a 'why' that is about so much more than treating lawns or installing plants. Our why is to affect the people around us - our team, clients, and the Gainesville community - in a positive way. 

Sometimes that's giving parents the opportunity to go to their child's soccer game because they don't have to hassle with their lawn on Saturday morning. Other times it's giving a family a place to spend time together without electronic interruptions by installing a patio with a firepit in their backyard. We impact our team by offering a positive work environment with a team atmosphere and above-average pay and benefits. In all of those areas, what we do is simply an extension of our why: to affect the people around us in a positive way. 

Whatever it is that you do, I encourage you to find and focus on why you do it. It will transform what you do into a passion and a purpose, and less of just a J.O.B.. 

Take a look at this impactful video that symbolizes this exact phenomenon. This simple idea can change the way you view your entire life.

In the clip, comedian Michael Jr. describes the power of knowing your “why.” In it, he asks a member of the audience to sing the opening portion of “Amazing Grace.” The gentleman, a music teacher, sang the refrain flawlessly.

After praising his performance, the comedian asked the gentleman to do it again, but this time painted a scenario of a family member just returning home from a long prison stay. Not surprisingly, the second performance was ten times better than the first. This time, the song was performed with feeling, emotion, and passion. The words were more animated and the tone was richer. Michael Jr. ended with a quote that is extremely insightful. He said:

“When you know your ‘WHY’ then your ‘WHAT’ has more impact, because you’re working towards your God-given PURPOSE.”