Most people have dreams and fantasies. Unfortunately most of those folks are also looking for a genie to appear or a winning lottery ticket to magically turn their lives into a dream come true instead of putting their own abilities into action in order to change their dreary day to day lives into meaningful and happy days. David Sturt unlocks a magic door into learning how to make your own dreams in life come true simply by using your own experience and expertise, and using your intuitions putting your best thoughts forward.
David Sturt's "Great Work" is an amazing read that can help everyone at every level in life or work.
Reading "Great Work" is a wonderful tool for students, service workers, blue collar, self employed, unemployed, volunteers and high powered executives to use in order to learn how to make their own magic, turning their life's great work into making a difference in bettering their own lives and those of others.
Whether aching to move to the top of the ladder in an existing job, looking for a way to stand above the crowd in order to get a job, build up your own dream business, or just speak up to promote a worthy cause, Sturt's book is necessary reading in order for one to learn how to use their already accomplished great work to get them where they are aiming to go. The uncomplicated to read and navigate book also includes easy to follow advice and steps at the end of each chapter for quick review and bookmarking.
David Sturt answers questions in an interview to further assist in helping people attain their dreams.
I was fortunate to speak candidly with the man behind "Great Work", David Sturt. David has a wonderful outlook on life that becomes infectious when speaking with him. I asked of him to answer a few questions about his own life's "great work" impact on himself and others, as well as some advice on assisting others in achieving life's goals through their own "great work" efforts.
I asked David "Looking back on your life, when do you remember your own "great work" making a positive difference in your life and how?"
David told me of a story going back to when he was in High School that had a profound impact on his life going forward. As he explained, windsurfing had just started to develop around 1980 when he was vacationing in Europe and picked up a windsurf. David loved it so much that the next summer he search and found a place one hour away from where he lived to learn the craft further. After the summer ended he ran into windsurf places owner who asked him to be an instructor during the next summer. David jumped at the chance and became certified and at 16 or 17 years of age began teaching the craft.
One day two women came in for instruction. The other instructor who was teaching them was having trouble with them not engaging and asked David to help them. David learned that the women were attending a nearby weight loss center and were encouraged to get out and try something new. He started working with them, encouraging them to sail, and got them to sail all the way from one side back to the beach. David explained how this was a moment of realization, of what an amazing experience it is making a difference in someone's life and how he felt personally rewarded. This moment affected David so much that it influenced his training in getting a degree in training and development (teaching skills in a work setting).
A second life experience that David was personally influenced by was when he helped start the company learning.com teaching technology skills to k through 8th graders. The inner city children did not have funds to have their computers at home which made it difficult for them to be up to date with the modern technology that they so needed to go further in life. David created online lessons for teaching kids about everything technology based such as preparing spreadsheets.
As David explains from his experiences, "There is immense satisfaction when you know that something you do makes a difference whether on a small level such as with the women learning how to windsurf, or a much larger level, as with teaching the children."
"Great Work" speaks about people who are "difference makers" that go beyond their job descriptions to make an impact on society and in return, their own careers. I asked David "What is the first step one should take to turn themselves into a difference maker?"
David's immediate answer was "Look at your role differently 're frame your role' beyond regular tasks." People should be "serial difference makers". David explains that jobs are more than just doing the task. Beyond the task people should question "What is the bigger picture of what we are trying to do? What influence can I bring to create the bigger picture? Going on to explain, David speaks about how very liberating it is when one transcends the old work notion of being hired to do a specific job and breaks away to become a "difference maker".
David adds "Ask the right questions to provoke fresh thinking to transcend 'What Is'; we get stuck in what is and what exists and need to get beyond by asking the right questions. Cheerfully David adds more questions that one should ask themselves in order to become a difference maker, "Ask What would people love? How can I make it so people will love it?" He explains "Bring ideas and creative energy to make colleagues, customers or anyone interacting with your work into this."
As David puts it "We need to have sense of joy and passion to try something new. Workers should not feel trapped and lose their sense of humanity. Organizations have clamped people down too much."
With so many recent college grads searching for employment I asked David "How can great work help college students make an impact with their studies and then in their search for employment upon graduation?"
Freshman coming in, quickly discern what does it mean to be a college student, as David puts it "They register, study, take and do well on tests." David states "College is a time for learning and not just taking classes." Ask questions of yourself; "What else can I experience?" further giving the advice "Go and talk to other people in the profession that you are studying to get a rich experience on that education beyond text books and class. David loves the idea of how internships connect students with a real world setting
David urges "Students need to get out of their circle for conversation; to think more broadly about learning." As he explains "Improve the mix by making small changes to the existing mix and be thoughtful about classes you take. Take a class outside traditional track to broaden the view." David gave me the example of how Apple founder, Steve Jobs, took calligraphy class that brought new creative ideas such as new fonts when he created Apple. Outside influences allow thinking which can broaden career opportunities.
As David puts it "Art of innovation is connecting stuff that hasn't been connected before; associating two pieces of information that haven't been associated before. Learning is adding a new connection that creates innovation."
With the job market such a battlefield these days I questioned David "Is there great work that someone without the benefit of a college degree can do to rise above those with degrees positioning for the same job?"
David answered by explaining "Most entering an interview ask themselves 'Can I conform to what they need?' David says "Instead bring all of your experience with you, not just what the job is looking for. Don't edit out other experiences that will set you apart from others." Further explaining "Sometimes people who don't have a degree marginalize themselves; instead play on your strengths, abilities, passion and experience to get the job. It is most important to play to your strengths and life experiences."
I asked of David "Is there one single most important question for one to ask of themselves and/or others that will start them on the road to becoming a difference maker?"
David answered with one simple statement "Asking 'What will people love?' will work in family, volunteer, college".
Climbing out of a comfort zone can be challenging so I wanted David to tell me "What is most important when one is attempting to grow out of the comfort boundaries of their inner circle of friends in order to grow more acquaintances to help in attaining goals?"
David explained to me that there are two parts to the answer to this question:
Number one: "Considering 'the who'; who is it that I could talk to who will give me a new idea." David further explains "The who creates a path".
In explaining "the who" David gave me an example "My partner was doing workshop for a races training organization. There was a person who manages volunteers there and Mark posed the question to her 'Who can you talk to about this?' in which she answered with the obvious answers naming people in her company. Mark suggested speaking with an outside organization; she started thinking but could not come up with any ideas. He suggested speaking with one of the people who managed the Olympics. She had never thought that she could even approach an outside influential source like that. Once she pursued this path the person she contacted from the Olympics was happy to share what he knew. The woman was shown how important 'the who' is and the need to be deliberately thinking who she would love to talk about in a different space than what she was used to."
Number two: "Just have a conversation. Keep it simple and don't tense up. Just ask about thoughts and perspectives from their own experience turning it into a fun conversation."
My final question to David "Can opening yourself up to new people hurt you ever, and if so how does one overcome that hurt on their quest to achieving a difference?"
It is common for someone to be nervous about reaching out because of the fear of getting hurt so David suggests "Start in your inner circle and build out from there." David gave me the example of how to ask a question in such a way as to get the answer one is looking for; "Hey, I was just thinking about this and just want your opinion?"
As David ended our question and answer session he reiterated "'The Who'; step out of your comfort zone and ask. Just do it. All it takes is one conversation to get value out of it to carry you to want to do more."
With his book "Great Work" David Sturt teaches how one can give themselves a "great work" pat on their own back for a job well done. Simply by using what one already knows and then building on that knowledge by being inventive, skillful and inquisitive Sturt's "Great Work" teaches important lessons in order to use your abilities and life's passions to get noticed and achieve your dreams.
Get going on becoming a difference maker in your own life; never be afraid to dance!
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