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Vulnerability & Business

Posted by Shannon Reichelt on
Vulnerability & Business

Vulnerability and business, you’ve got to be kidding right?!

I’ll set the stage.. If you don’t know who Marcus Lemonis is and you run a business I’d highly suggest you check him out.  I’m a tad behind getting on the Marcus bandwagon having only discovered him last year, but after getting to meet the man at a conference, hear his presentation, ask him my own question and watch a bunch of dvr’d episodes, I found myself inspired on how he defines doing business.  Marcus introduced me to being ok with being vulnerable.

At an Inc Magazine conference in DC I attended, Marcus didn’t talk about how wonderful he is, how many millions he has, how many businesses, no laundry list of accomplishments.  He told us a bunch of really deep dark personal realities about himself.  I’m talking really unpleasant stuff.  You could hear a pin drop.  I for one was holding my breath.  Why would he do this?  He believes if you get to know him as a human being, can relate, you’ll make a connection that forms a truly authentic relationship. 

Authentic relationships are those that are real and where you go to bat for each other.  Why?  Because you genuinely care. 

The concept is to connect genuinely with people to come together towards shared goals.  By making yourself vulnerable you remove defenses and ego and get to the heart of the matter.  That’s when real progress happens.  Win, wins really can exist.

Early in the conference we heard Kevin O’Leary from SharkTank speak.  Kevin’s message was typical Kevin, you must be able to fire your mother was one tidbit, maximize shareholder value at all costs was another.  Don’t get me wrong I’m not a hater, he had some interesting comments.  He’s a shrewd and very successful venture capitalist.  At the close of the conference, the room was asked to raise our hand if we wanted to do business like Kevin or Marcus.  The entire room, about 150, minus 5, raised their hands to Marcus.  The 5 were venture capitalists…  Think about this!  It was a very powerful observation and a turning point for me.

It was actually ok to be vulnerable.  Better yet it can be a winning strategy in your life.  You could feel fulfilled with your work because you are not holding up this superficial wall of BS, which can get exhausting. 

Imagine real connections with people as a way of life and not just for the few that come along when you get lucky. 

Relationships with your employees or employers rooted in this MO are what can build incredible Companies and incredible lives for those that buy into this conscious way of thinking and behaving. 

I know I’m talking all about work here but it applies to your personal relationships too.  How vulnerable you get is entirely up to you.  I’d be a tad mindful of how much you share and with whom, don’t go crazy!  I’ve started small with things that I might have been shy to say or didn’t want to ask someone to help me because I felt embarrassed. Or someone I should have said sorry to for whatever reason.  What I’ve found is that each time I’ve done this my relationship with that person was strengthened, more honest, and just straight-up happy!  Terrifying?  Yes!  Game changer worth considering?  Absolutely!  Good one Marcus, thanks for the vulnerability.

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