Tricia Karp Tricia Karp
29 March 2018

It’s not a competition

Last week I worked with two female executive coaches to write and produce a promotional video for their business.

They want to spread the word about a regular event they offer to inspire and empower women.

Someone asked me why I would help them because they’re my “competition”.

Here’s what I said, “I’m willing to support anyone who’s helping women to become more powerful. We want the same thing for the world.”

And, “It’s not a competition. There’s no limit on success. There’s enough to go around.”

*

At a meeting with another client last week, an innovative and very successful retailer, I heard about love, care, passion, and hospitality coming first. I heard about treating customers as family. I heard about collaboration and community, and a sincere desire to serve that community. I also heard that money is never the driver, but it always comes and there’s more than enough of it when those values and hard work are steering the ship.

*

I ordered three new dining chairs.

I know it’s odd to order three, but only a trio can fit around my tiny antique table that is a thing of beauty and brings me joy every time I look at it. That feels more important to me, these days, than practicality. As does a feeling of spaciousness in a small room.

The man who makes the chairs had a stunning fabric with flitting pink, blue and gold birds. I was so excited to discover it and it was an immediate ‘yes please!’ from me.

He also told me that the fabric is high quality commercial-grade, and he always tells customers the truth because he wants to treat them like he would his family.

Last week I picked up the chairs. The man who made them, a gentle soul, told me they’re his favourite. Very French, he said.

After he’d kindly and carefully loaded them into my car, and I’d handed over my credit card, I asked him where he was from.

Persia, he told me. He and his wife came here 30 years ago as part of a United Nations program. Most people from Persia are refugees who arrive by boat, he said.

He told me he and his wife are of the Baha’i faith, not Muslim like most people from Persia.

He pointed to a framed photo on the wall of a Baha’i temple in India, and said there’s one in Sydney too, that anyone of any faith can go to to pray.

They can pray in their own faith, he said enthusiastically.

“We are all about unity and peace,” he said.

Unity and peace.

One thing I know for sure, as evidenced by these little stories I’ve just shared with you, is that when we own and express who we truly are – in business, at work, in our lives – are we more powerful and more peaceful.

Ultimately, that creates more unity and peace in the world.

That can only be a good thing.

So here’s to praying in the same temple and forgetting about the competition, whatever that means to each of us, in the name of our own power as women and contributing to everyone else’s.

We can make a difference, and we do, in sometimes what seem like the teeniest ways.

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