We don’t go running away from our values, we go drifting away. And one day we wake up in a place we never meant to be, drifting in a direction we never would have chosen. I originally wrote these words at a table in a Starbucks while writing my book Good to the Core. I had no idea they would become the most called out words of the book, although I suppose I should have sensed it just from my own life’s journey.
I was recently asked by a friend to speak to his leadership class of eighth-grade boys. It wasn’t my typical corporate audience of executives and so I was a bit apprehensive whether these middle schoolers would find my message on core values interesting or relevant. I wasn’t prepared for the depth of their engagement or for the wisdom of one particular student in the closing question/answer session. He posed a thoughtful and brilliant question to which I was certain he had already figured out the answer. He said, “Mr. Blumberg, do you think other people see you drifting before you see it yourself?” I would urge every leader to remember his question. I think we all know the answer.
How would you have responded to his question? Share your thoughts in the comments below!