Derek Sivers was not exactly my hero, although he is the author of one of my ALL-TIME Top 5 favorite business books:
- Linchpin Seth Godin
- How to Drive Your Competition Crazy Guy Kawasaki
- Delivering Happiness Tony Hsieh
- Anything you want Derek Sivers
- Onwards Howard Schultz
(Money back guarantee from me, if any of the above doesn’t impact you as a person, or change your business for the better.)
I had the rare privilege of meeting Derek at a conference today. Often, when you get to meet people whom you admire, one of two things happen: You either get really disappointed or really inspired.
There’s no in-between.
The good news for me was – I got REALLY inspired! Because:
- Listening to him made me feel smarter about myself.
- He looked me in the eyes the whole time we spoke, as if I was the only person that mattered.
- He was absolutely accommodating with my stupid questions. I knew I should have asked something more sophisticated like the recent Wall Street demonstration event or something about innovation in Silicon Valley. Instead, all I uttered out was “What’s fun about Singapore?” Duh!
Of course he didn’t need to show the graciousness he did today:
- He’s a millionaire (he doesn’t need my book money).
- He could have had a bad day (it’s tough to be on the road and speak few days in a row).
- He’s done his job on stage.
Notice all my ‘judgmental view’ about Derek has everything to do with how he makes me feel, and nothing about what he’s spoken on stage (Brilliant! Brilliant! Brilliant!) or how well his thoughts were on paper.
Shallow as I might have sounded, if you’re really honest with yourself, you’d have asked the same questions in your head.
Perhaps what makes a celebrity a hero have much to do with how they make you feel, when you finally get to meet them (Ladies & Gentlemen, today I shook hand with the guy who gave away USD 22M to charity).
Did I say, he made me feel smarter about myself?
Derek Sivers. Hero. Like!