Follow You Anywhere

It was almost exactly a year ago when I emailed my mentor and former boss yet another thank you note after completing a huge project for my first Canadian client. His response: "always pay it forward." Today, I found myself teaching others what he taught me... Paying it forward.

I wish he was here with me to see what he's done. He started something and he should be here to see it, not to accept our applause, but to silence it and push me -- all of us -- to do more. Not more in quantity but more in listening, more in art, more in humility, more in encouragement and more in service to others.

Today would have been his 54th birthday. I am reminded that building leaders means holding others to a higher standard, and this starts with holding ourselves to a higher standard.

Maybe more starts with less. Do you think? Less distraction. Less gossip. Less excuses. Less procrastination. Less indignation. Less apathy. Less satisfaction. Satisfaction? Yeah, its the enemy of progress.

Hold yourself to a higher standard, Kyle. Don't be satisfied by your success, Brent, because it's not success it's just progress, Bonnie. Be validated, Erin, and inspired by it, Brian. The world needs your art and your approach, Sarah. When should you stop, Bry? Stop when Mike stopped, Mark. You can stop when God says you've done it, Jason.

You lit the fire inside all these people and now the fire needs oxygen to burn. God's way of fueling a fire inside you is to make you gasp for air and that's exactly what we all did when he took Mike McLaran. Breathe it in, pilgrims. Let it fuel you. It burns forever and you can either complain about the heat or light someone else's fire.

// Kyle Sexton is a marketing strategist and international speaker. His innovations have been featured in The Wall Street Journal, and his book ReMembership: New Thinking for Tomorrow's Membership Organization is fueling transformations in membership organizations throughout North America. He can be reached at 888.899.8374 or get his free resources at