What does it mean to be Fearless?
Taking risks? Being bold? What does it mean to be Fearless in your work life?
This morning, during the opening keynote at Marketo Marketing Nation Summit, Marketo CEO Steve Lucas introduced the theme: The Fearless Marketer.
It is a marketing conference, after all. And yes, wedged into his inspiring opening keynote address was a bit of a sales pitch – be Fearless, and Marketo is the platform that will help get you there. But something else resonated with me that went beyond my role as a content marketer or business consultant.
He talked about the ideas Marketo is built on: Plan, Engage, Measure. That, he said, is fearless.
But then Diane Greene, CEO of Google Cloud, joined him on stage, and she challenged his idea:
“Plan, Engage, Measure – those are tools,” she said. “To me, being fearless, is facing reality.”
Despite what the word itself means, reality looks different for all of us. What does your day look like today? What fires are you putting out? What about tomorrow? Ask yourself – are your customers happy? Are you really giving them what they want?
Facing your reality, sometimes by admitting failures or asking tough questions, can be terrifying. Maybe that campaign was a total bust. Maybe you delivered a proposal that the client didn’t go for. Maybe they did, and now you’re faced with putting together the biggest project you’ve ever done for the biggest client you’ve ever had. But being fearless in these times, and having the mindset to move ahead no matter what, is what allows us all to grow – personally and professionally.
And yes, you might use tools to help you do that. But you can’t hide behind those tools, and the tools certainly can’t be fearless for you.
When you stand up and say, “I can do this”, regardless of what the day holds or what might be asked of you, you empower yourself to be better than yesterday. You might be shaking in your boots – but that’s not what’s important. What’s important is that you stood up at all and took on those new challenges.
That’s what makes you fearless.