If you’re lucky, you recently got this post card from me. I thought the view of a crystal clear bay from a Caribbean beach would hit the spot right about now. I took that photo of secluded Brewer’s Bay, Tortola, BVI, from a chaise lounge. Another version shows my red-nail polished toes and a cold beverage.
When I took that photo two years ago, The Husband and I were halfway through our 10th Anniversary Caribbean cruise. That trip was my first vacation to the ocean, where I lounged on perfect beach after perfect beach. I swam and floated in the ocean, then let the water dry on my skin, coating me in salt crystals. I. Loved. It.
On Brewer’s Bay beach, I didn’t have a care in the world. I would take a swim, float a bit, get back to my lounge, stare at the bay, air dry – then repeat. At one point, while wading out neck-deep, I thought, “Well, a shark could come by right now and swallow me in one gulp.” I bobbed there, looked out at the bay, back at the sand, and thought further, “Meh, why worry?”
That worry-free feeling is probably my overall best memory of our trip. The sky, the sun, the sand, the water, the food, the ship – Yes, it was all amazing. But feeling worry-free allowed me to fully enjoy those experiences.
And I want to share that feeling. The best way I can think of is to be so dedicated to doing good work that my customers view working with me to be a worry-free experience.
I produce consistent, high-quality writing. Every job should be done well, whether it is making the bed or writing copy. I could never just pull the bedspread up over rumpled sheets. And I could never hand in copy that isn’t my best composition. Customers deserve, and pay for, a best effort. It’s a point of personal integrity.
I listen, then tell the story. I write good copy because I first take the time to listen to the story. People will tell exactly what they want, but maybe not in a neat package. I have a conversation, ask questions, and follow their lead. We build a relationship, and their story becomes as important to me as my own.
I am reliable. In all the places I’ve worked, I have observed that reliable, competent people are surprisingly hard to come by. The Competent Person does their job well, figures out new ways to do a better job, and can service the copier and printer while troubleshooting your desktop. You know what The Competent Person does best? They figure out what needs to be done, and then they do it. Every day.
I care. Even at my least-favorite place of work, my boss knew that I cared (he said so). I can’t turn it off. I care about quality, sincerity and ethics in life, and don’t perceive a division where it comes to business. Garrison Keillor says it best during his Writer’s Almanac sign-off: “Be well, do good work, and keep in touch.”
Mailing an eye-catching post card and saying that I do good work isn’t enough. I have to deliver on my promises. But you know what? I’m not worried — it really isn’t that hard to deliver when you love what you do.