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We Never Say, “That’s Not My Job”: Backstage Pass With Tasha W. Thomas


At our Strategic Coach headquarters in Toronto, we have a café, and in that café is a big, fancy coffee machine.

It’s a bit intimidating.

Recently, an entrepreneur came into the café during a break in his Strategic Coach Program workshop and asked me to show him how to make a latte. “If you’re not too busy, of course!” he quickly added.

“I’ll do one better,” I said. “Let me make it for you.”

“Oh, no, no, no! That’s not your job.”

“Bill,” I replied, “we don’t say that here. I’ve got this.” And I made him his latte, not thinking anything of it, because that’s just what we do. Our “job” is anything that allows you to be comfortable and present in your workshop—which might be a latte at 2 p.m.

A couple of weeks later, Bill sent me a thank-you note. He was so grateful and amazed by what I did. Funny that such a simple thing should stick in his mind.

Since I’m a Workshop Success Director in his workshops, Bill’s used to seeing me manage the room—making sure we’re moving through the timeline, taking care of the coach, ringing the chimes for breaks, and answering questions about materials. I guess he figured getting him a coffee was outside my wheelhouse. But if I can be a hero to him or any of our clients in that way, that’s exactly what I’ll strive to do.

Everything outside the workshop room is handled by our Client Experience Team, which I’m also a part of. In the morning, we check you in at the concierge desk and give you your nametag and any paperwork you need. We’ll arrange a limousine, print your boarding pass, or make a dinner reservation. Generally, we’ll take care of anything that might get in the way of your focusing in the workshop.

A few weeks ago, a client came up to the concierge desk and asked if I could print something: He’d bought his wife cooking classes for her birthday—the very next day—and all he had to show for it was a Word file from the caterer.

He came around the desk, and we started working with the layout, but then I got an idea. “Leave it with me,” I said.

I went downstairs to our production department to see Jen, who’s a genius with print design. She found the caterer’s logo online, placed everything “just so” on the page, and printed it out as a gift card on linen paper. My gosh, it was beautiful. So Jen got to be a hero by using her Unique Ability, and her artful result took a fraction of the time my attempt would have taken.

I went back to the workshop room and gave our client the card. He said, “I can’t believe you guys did this—it’s amazing! I really appreciate it, because I know this isn’t what you’re here for.”

We don’t approach our work like a job. A job is task-based: You’ve got a list of things to do that you check off, and anything not on that list isn’t your job.

Instead, we’re results-oriented: On one project, it might take three tasks to get a great result; on the next, it’ll take nine. But we’ll do whatever it takes.

When we talk about a Self-Managing Company—a business that gives you freedom of time, money, relationship, and purpose—some people mistakenly think those benefits are just for the entrepreneur. Not at all. When, as a member of our team, I help our clients create greater freedom and growth in their business or personal life, rewards flow back to me as well. There’s financial compensation, but even more meaningful and enjoyable is getting to use and develop my Unique Ability. Why would I not be down for that? Of course I am!

So if making you a latte or a greeting card will free up your mind so you can go back to your workshop and design a brilliant quarter that delivers a breakthrough, you’d better believe that’s my job!