Is Selling a Purposeful Profession – Purpose of Living – Part 29

purposeful sales person 2
Image credits: businessknowhow.com

I was at a cocktail party listening to an interesting conversation between two other guests who were in the same huddle as me.

Person A: What do you do?

Person B: I sell financial services.

Person A: What do you really want to do?

Person B: I want to be banker.

I asked A why he asked that question, and B why he responded that way. A said, “isn’t selling a profession that is not respected?” B said “yes”, it is so difficult to sell because customers look at him with suspicion. In my three decades of being in business and playing the roles of seller, buyer, leader, trainer, consultant and coach of sales professionals, I have encountered this attitude towards sales on many occasions.

However, my personal attitude towards sales is the opposite. As I reflect on the questions – how is it that people have developed this attitude towards sales, and what would be the best way to help people to look differently at sales? – the notion of purposefulness continues to come to my mind. Perhaps if I can find out if ‘sales’ is a purposeful profession, then it might help me to engage with people who have diverse viewpoints regarding this question.

Answering the above question requires understanding what is a purposeful profession. While I have attempted to answer this question in the earlier blog posts regarding purposefulness, there is no definite answer due to the complexity of this question. I believe that a purposeful profession needs to be of service to the flourishing of life and supported by noble values. Let’s examine these two aspects in relation to the sales profession. Continue reading “Is Selling a Purposeful Profession – Purpose of Living – Part 29”

The Purpose of the Mens Cricket World Cup – Purpose of Living – Part 28

CWC-2019-Captains
Image Credits: http://www.cricketworldcup.com

Over a billion people have been engaged with the ongoing Men’s Cricket World Cup over the last month. It all started with everyone hoping the cricket teams of their respective countries will become the world champions. The fact remains that only one team will be the eventual world champions. This blog is not about trying to predict the eventual champs, it is to discuss the impact of such sports extravaganza has on the lives of people.

The International Cricket Council organizes the Men’s Cricket World Cup as well as other global competitions related to Cricket to propagate cricket as well as raise funds. I am not sure which comes first. Is it to raise funds to propagate cricket or propagate cricket to raises funds. Well it doesn’t matter, perhaps both ends feed each other. There could be other reasons, for example to raise the standards of the sport and of those who are involved in it such as the players, coaching staff, umpires, referees, cricket boards and administrators. These aims could have a higher purpose that impacts the lives of people and I would like to address such issues in this blog post. 

My blog post of the last two months addressed the impact of violence, religion and politics on the lives of people in the aftermath of the Easter Sunday bomb attacks in Sri Lanka, one of the former world champions who are now at the bottom of the table, struggling for form. Yet the entire nation was hoping that they will become the champs again. Teams from other countries besieged by violence such as Pakistan and Afghanistan are also in contention. The founders of cricket, England, is amid perhaps their worst political crisis related to Brexit. They entered the tourney as one of the favourites. Countries such as South Africa, Bangladesh and the West Indies are besieged with their own political and economic crises.  Continue reading “The Purpose of the Mens Cricket World Cup – Purpose of Living – Part 28”

Attacking the Innocent – What is the Purpose? – Purpose of Living – Part 26

easter attacks - condole april 19
Image Credits: fairmail.info

It was Easter Sunday (21 April 2019). I was in my flat in Dhaka, attending to some important business matters when I got a message that a bomb had gone off at St Anthony’s Church in Kochchikade, Colombo. Having not heard of bombings and terrorist violence for the past ten years, since the end of the civil war in Sri Lanka, I hoped it was a hand grenade thrown by a business rival involved in unscrupulous business, with no injuries; these were the rare occurrences we heard of over the past ten years. Then the news started pouring in with photos and videos of simultaneous bomb attacks in two other churches and luxury hotels as well. My immediate concern was for my family who would have been at an Easter Mass at the same time. After calling and ensuring they were safe, my thoughts went out to the victims. I started hearing news of people known to me or families of people known to me having lost their lives or being injured, among the 253 souls that departed and 500 plus injured. I had visited St Anthony’s Church many times and I could picture the carnage as if I was there. It is considered a miraculous church and people from all religions visit to reflect on their challenges and ask help from St Anthony to resolve them.

Continue reading “Attacking the Innocent – What is the Purpose? – Purpose of Living – Part 26”

When purposes clash at the workplace – Purpose of Living – Part 25

collegue purpose conflits
Image credits: http://www.insperity.com

Have you ever faced a situation where you have a purpose that clashes with the purpose of a colleague, such as your boss, peer or a direct report? Has this situation led to misunderstandings, arguments, anger, click formation, politicking and even violence that starts affecting the business of the organisation? How did you handle the situation? Has it made you become disgruntled about the notion of ‘purposeful living’ and even resulted in discouraging team members in living purposefully. I will try to address this issue in this blog post from the experience I have had in dealing with such situations as a team member from within the organisation or as a consultant and coach from outside the organisation. Continue reading “When purposes clash at the workplace – Purpose of Living – Part 25”

When Purposes Clash in Families – Purpose of Living – Part 24

When purposes clash
Image credit: http://www.keyministry.org a caption

Have you ever had a situation where you have a purpose different to the purpose of a family member, such as a spouse, parent, sibling or child? Has this situation led to misunderstandings, arguments, anger, violence or estrangement? How did you handle the situation? Has it made you become disgruntled about the notion of ‘purposeful living’. I will try to address this issue in this blog post from the limited experience I have had in dealing with such situations.

Recently I had the opportunity of counselling a couple who were facing such a situation;  the husband is a successful chief executive of a company and the wife is a senior manager in a bank. They have two adorable children. The family is financially sound with means of passive income. The husband was very caring to the family and they were always happy. The wife had always been supportive of the husband, specially in the early days of their marriage when he was struggling to move up the corporate ladder, while caring for the children. Continue reading “When Purposes Clash in Families – Purpose of Living – Part 24”

Finding Purpose in giving – Purpose of Living – Part 23

purpose in giving - jan 19
Image credit: http://www.stapostle.org

It’s interesting that the month of January 2019 was a month where I did as much free work as paid work. The first free assignment was to provide a keynote address at the new year celebration of a leading organisation in the insurance industry to inspire the staff of over 1000, who were gathered for the celebration, on the 1st of January. The second free assignment was to continue to help the administrators, parents and past pupils of my alma mater, St Anthony’s Collage, to take forward the strategic plan that I facilitated in formulating one year ago. The third free assignment was to help an important arm of the government of Sri Lanka to develop the leadership of a very important category of officials in becoming better leaders and making a better contribution for the development of the country. Continue reading “Finding Purpose in giving – Purpose of Living – Part 23”

Purpose of Living – Part 21: Inspiring others to live a purposeful life

inspire
Image credits: http://icorecoach.com

We explored the notion of purpose from various viewpoints in the first ten blog posts in this series. We then started making sense of our purpose in the next ten blog posts. I invite you now to reflect on the ninth aspect in the model of purposeful living– inspiring (the dark blue colour circle in the model). While this is the ninth and final circle, in real life it can happen anywhere in the nine circles, it’s not necessarily chronological. There could be also other circles that are yet to be discovered. Once we gather momentum in living purposefully, we start inspiring others to live purposefully as well.

This blog-post deals with our responsibility to inspire others to live a purposeful life. We can inspire others by design or by accident. On one hand, others can get inspired when they see the improvement of our quality of life as we attempt to live a purposeful life.  Living a purposeful life includes; living with a set of positive values, engaging in spiritual activities, looking after our health, building quality relationships, building financial stability, developing intellect and allocating time for purposeful activities. On the other hand, we could use our roles in life to inspire others. These roles include being a parent, sibling, relative, teacher, leader, colleague, author, speaker, and social figure such as a sportsman, entertainer, business leader, religious leader and social leader etc. Continue reading “Purpose of Living – Part 21: Inspiring others to live a purposeful life”