After a magnificent weekend of learning at a conference in Colorado Springs, I was surprised at even more learning experiences in the 24 hours it took to get home.  Yes, I went to sleep Friday night to a beautiful day of green grass, flowers and gorgeous scenery at the magnificent Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, and woke up to 5 inches of snow. After being booked on 4 different flights, I ended up getting back home at 2 a.m. More on that in a moment.

Over the weekend, I was attending the National Speakers Association CSP/CPAE summit. We broke into small groups of 6 to mastermind with each other, and the 6 of us in my group came from different parts of the speaking world.  We acted as each others’ mentor, coach, adviser and trusted authority.  Each of us came away with many ideas and we gained appreciation for the fact that the same business can be done 100’s of different ways.

This is a big lesson for all of us to remember – to be open minded and learn from the collective wisdom and cooperation of a team. Sometimes we have tunnel vision about ourselves and what we do.  When you wake up and take a look at what’s going on around you, you can learn from people, who may even be in another industry, where a technique they are using could lead you to a whole new methodology to apply to your own problems.

In the airport, there were 4 blind people sitting next to me.  They were great friendly, laughing and happy individuals.  I helped them a little and they couldn’t have been more grateful. But here is the thing I noticed about teamwork: To get on the plane, they all lined up one in back of the other with one hand on the backpack of the person in front of them.  The person in front was guided by an airline employee.  It was a wonderful sight to see where using a simple approach to teamwork can be really helpful as well as efficiently solving a problem.

Then for the first time in many years, I experienced two airlines that cooperated with each other to help me out. Originally booked on American, all flights were cancelled because of storms in Dallas and snow in Colorado Springs.  They sent me to United which had the same problems but they sent me to Denver with a bigger hub and put me on standby to get home, and this finally worked.

So sometimes you need to cooperate with a competitor to make good things happen for your customer, and other times it’s just by watching what is happening in the world around you.  Whatever it is for you, stay open!

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