Last week I took my last trip of the year. I had the pleasure of working with 20 great leaders from Netflix in Los Angeles. The entire trip was great and it was time to head home. Off to the airport I go. Having been in a band that toured, I’ve always had a good bit of “luck” running into celebrities in my travels. Sometimes you are glad to have met certain celebrities while other times you might wish you had never met them at all.
Happy to report that this time I can say that I was glad to have crossed paths with Craig Robinson. Many of you might know him as his character Darryl Philbin from the wildly popular show The Office. I say crossed paths because it was not the first time meeting him. That’s what made this interesting. We were in the Delta Sky Lounge. He was getting some food and I walked up to him. Of course he knew he had been recognized. My first words to him were, “I’m gonna blow your mind.” To which he comically replied, “Ok. Give me a minute.” He took a deep breathe and then smiled. “Hit me.” He added.
I then reminded him about a show he headlined at a comedy club years ago in Atlanta which he clearly remembered. Then I shared that he had asked the band that opened the show to provide music for his set. He clearly remembered that. Then I told him it was my band. You should have seen the look on his face. “So how did I do?” I asked. Of course that was met with a huge smile. Then we got a picture which he was more than happy to take. When I left the Sky Lounge and walked by him and nodded he made it a point to call me by my name and wish we me well. Impressive.
So it got me thinking. What was so special about this exchange? A few things:
1. He was welcoming and truly open minded from “hello”. You could feel his warmth. That IS a choice. He created the conditions for a real conversation and opportunity to connect. He was OPEN TO POSSIBILITY.
2. He engaged in a way that clearly showed interest as opposed to someone wanting to get the conversation over with. Specifically he was PRESENT. That was him making an investment in me.
3. When I walked out he made a point to engage again and use my name. Holy cow that blew me away! That was evidence for me to his level of caring about the exchange. He meant it and it was AUTHENTIC.
4. He was just as cool as I had remembered him and he is a way bigger star now. That was evidence of his HUMILITY.
The exchange had enough of an impact on me to think about it enough to share. In my opinion, he is a TRUE rock star. Rock stars intentionally create special experiences for others. Look up at the words in bold. Who wouldn’t want to follow a leader with those qualities? Who wouldn’t want to be friends with someone like that? Who wouldn’t want to be married to someone with those qualities? If this is you, turn it up. If you don’t possess these qualities, what are YOU willing to do about it? How HONEST are you willing to be with yourself to get there? The world needs more people like Craig.