Passion, Love, Work, Leadership and Football

Part of the Kenno's Blog series.
By Ken Brown
Editor, You Can Learn Series
January 19, 2008

Do You Love What You Do?

Do you love what you do? Are you excited when you go into work each day? Are you passionate about business success? When you wake up each morning are you thinking about the thrill of victory?

I am a big Chicago Bears football fan. And if you live in the Chicago area and love the Bears the way I do then you may want to stop reading right now. Why? Because what I am about to say will be considered heresy to passionate Chicago Bears football fans.

But, this is not an article about football. This is an article about being passionate about what you do for a living. You need to live your life with passion and love your work.

I am going to be watching football this weekend. There are only four teams left in the race for the Super Bowl. After a season of ups and downs, mostly downs for the Chicago team. I am going to be placing my hopes on the Green Bay Packers.

A Seasoned Leader!

Why, is the anguish of the Chicago fans. Green Bay is our worst enemy. How can you dare place your enthusiasm and support to those guys? One reason. Brett Favre.

Though I am not a big Green Bay fan per se. I do respect Brett. Here is a man with passion for the game. Passion for his job. Every weekend he is on the field giving it his all for his team. He has lasted over 15 years (maybe more) in an industry where it is rare for a person in his position (quarterback) to last more than five years.

Become Passionate about Your Job

But, each Sunday when you watch him play you see his passion. Do you want to be a leader? Become passionate about your job, your company and your industry. People respect passionate leaders. They can see it in your eyes each day. They hear it in your voice as you express opinions, your vision for the company and your desire to serve your customer.

People can tell if you love what you do. They know. If you don't feel it, you won't express it. You express it in your body language. Your willingness to go the extra mile for your coworkers and customers. When you work a little later to finish a project. When you smile at the people you work with. Guess what? Leaders know who the passionate ones are. If there is a downturn in the industry the ones that are passionate about the business will still have a job.

Brett Favre is that kind of leader. When he is pacing the sidelines you see his passion in his face. As he talks with the other players on the team and they discuss strategy, his passion is expressed. As he leads his team from one endzone to the opposing team's endzone, his passion explodes. From raising his hands in victory, to congratulating team mates and to doing the Lambeau Leap, Brett's love for the game shines on his face.

Why has Brett lasted so long for so many years in a young man's game? Because he loves what he does. Why is he considered a leader? Because it is natural for passionate people to become leaders on and off the field.

Do You Want to be a Leader

Do you want to become a leader? Find a job or industry that you are passionate about. You will become a leader. Express that passion each day in the enthusiasm you bring to the job. You don't have to jump up and down and give high fives to everyone in the office. You probably shouldn't slap all your coworkers on the butt when they give an excellent performance! But, enjoy what you do. Will there be times of stress? Yes. Times when things go bad? Yes. But, work through those tough times and strive for the passion of excellence.

I worked for 10 years doing a job I was less than passionate about. I worked for the United States Postal Service. Everyday I would go into work and see people that were already retired. They still had 25 years to work. But, they had no passion. No love for the game. They didn't desire to excel. It was just a job. They were there until they could retire. End of story.

I desired more than that. I wanted to live life. I wanted to be challenged. I wanted to live a life of ups and downs. I wanted to live the thrill of victory. So. for the last 22 years I have been involved in a number of start up companies. Some have done well. Others have flopped. But, I have passion for the game. If I had continued to work for the Post Office I might be able to retire now. But, I don't want to retire. I want to play the game.

Be in the Championship Game!

I want to be in the championship. I want to be excited about today, tomorrow and my future. I want possibilities. That includes the possibility to fail. I want to love life, love my job and love responsibility. Have fun in what you do. Be passionate about your work everyday. It shows!

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We Arrive in Santiago de Compestela Spain

We walked for Thirty Three days straight

We have arrived in Santiago. We walked for 33 straight days. Some days were 12 milers and as many as 18 miles or more in one day. We reached our destination. We decided not to rush to reach the city. Mary had accidentally banged her knee on the table at the restaurant the night before and it was a little tender.

Day 31 Palas de Rei to Ribadiso

We have walked 31 days to Santiago de Compostela

Today we started early because we had reserved a room at an albergue and we had to get there by 2pm or we lost the reservation. Mary set a blistering pace in the dark morning mist. Sunrise is at 8 am but this morning we had clouds and fog so it was darker than yesterday. The path through the city was okay but then leaving the city it became more difficult.

Three days of walking left in our Camino

We only have 66 kilometers to Santiago

We have walked for 30 days with only 3 days till we reach our destination of Santiago de Compostela. It has been an amazing journey. We are in the Galicia region of Spain known for the rain it receives. Well we are extremely lucky because the weather has been beautiful for walking. It starts out cool in the high 40s but then warms up to the low to mid 70s. With plenty of sunshine.

We arrived in Sarria

Five walking days to Santiago

Today we started late at 8 am. We were almost the last people out of Triacastela walking the Camino.

Ocebreiro to Triacastela

Only 6 days remaining on the Camino de Santiago

We are sitting in a restaurant in the little village of Triacastela on day 27 having tapas. It was a short 12 miles that were mostly down. Tomorrow we hope to go to Sarria.

Views from Astorga Spain

From Leon to Astorga on the Camino de Santiago

We visited Leon, Spain yesterday and then we walked 35Km today. Leon was wonderful. Today we walked in rain for the first time. We went 35 KM yesterday for no other reason than we could.

Walked 17 Miles Today

Today we walked 17 miles on the Camino

Today we are sitting at the albergue in Terradillos de las Templarios. We are at the halfway point in our journey. We have walked over 250 miles or 400 kilometers. I truly didn't think we would be able to do this. Mary has been a real trouper walking through bad knees and the pain of shin splints.

Finished a Third of our Camino Experience

We have walked a Third of the way to Santiago

Today finds us in Ages, Spain only 14 miles from Burgos. We are quite excited that we have managed this distance. We hoped we could but we had doubts especially those first few days where we hurt so much.

The Path to Najera Spain

Eight Days of Walking

We have been walking for 8 days now. It has been interesting, tiring, painful, fun and a real learning experience.

Walking Through the Pyrenees

Walking Through the Pyrenees

Mary and I started our journey to Santiago Spain. The first day we started in Saint Jean Pied de Port in France. The goal was to arrive in Roncevalle, Spain before nightfall.

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