Just a Little Magic in the Details

I have friends and colleagues who can make an ordinary venue turn into something spectacular. If I didn’t know better, I’d swear they have some pixie dust in their fingers. They notice everything. They envision how a venue should appear, where there should be centerpieces, the arrangement of food and entrées, the type of ambiance they want, and everything you can envision, plus more in event planning and coordination. Then there are my friends who work in the corporate world and can secure impossible deals. They are the movers and shakers that can bring others to their knees, wishing they could acquire those skills.

One of my friends works in the world of purchasing. There are many details she has to ensure correct every day. It’s not easy. Some of her vendors are work, yet she makes it look like child’s play. She knows her job well and isn’t afraid to make difficult decisions. It’s a cutthroat world in her line of work, yet she tackles the opportunities that come her way like she’s been doing this her entire life.

Another friend is an artist. She is drawn to horses and can ride like the wind. The only time she ever feels free is when she’s riding like the wind. She’s like a cousin of mine who has become one with the ocean in her free-diving world. Both of these women understand the details that are necessary for their craft. When the artist’s friend paints, she sees the world in a clear, concise manner. Every detail is memorized and painted on the canvas. She looks at how green the meadow is and tries to emulate the color concept. The horse has no hair left behind because it’s part of the masterpiece she’s creating for others to exist in her world, even if it’s for just a brief moment in time. My cousin dances through the ocean, exploring every nook and cranny. She uses her camera to capture her visits with the sharks, turtles, stingrays, dolphins, and other mystifying animals in the depths of the ocean. I envy her. She has a free spirit like me but doesn’t let fear keep her from exploring the unknown. I’ve gotten better about it over the years, but she amazes me with her willingness to propel herself forward.

Several friends are police officers, and I don’t envy them at this time in history. They train to notice everything. Some of them have seen police officers do things that were not acceptable, while others have tried to maintain peace and order in a career that disorder exists in spades. When I’ve asked them about the details they look for, the standard answer is “everything.” They look for anything out of the normal. They watch people’s body reactions and language. The cops who do their jobs well are the first to tell you that it’s not a job for the faint of heart. These men and women sacrifice their lives both physically and emotionally for a job currently in the news for the horrific actions of others.

I think that’s why when I look at any job that people do, it amazes me at the details each one of us has in providing exceptional experiences. In the world of self-storage, we have to keep the property looking pristine, with an attractive curb appeal, litter-free driveways, and spotless property views. We must clean every unit before showing it to another potential customer. We treat our customers’ needs because they matter because the phone and front door are often the most commonly used approaches customers have to interact with the manager on site.

Challenges surround any job or event. But presentation can mean the difference in making something a success or failure. I have many friends who are pastors. They have so many details to deal with to ensure they are coming through for their congregations. They have to make sure they pay attention to what the parishioner’s needs are. Some people do not wish to have others know when they are facing a medical crisis. Some folks gossip because they have nothing better to do.

Becoming aware of the details we use daily is only part of the equation. The truth is that if you don’t care how things look, then why do you expect anyone else to care about what they do or how others present themselves and their projects? You wouldn’t want to go to a coffee shop where the baristas don’t care how their products look. If you love to pair things with coffee, how delicious would it look if the pastry case looks disheveled and you couldn’t tell which item was which? I am pretty confident that you wouldn’t want to try what you couldn’t figure out. Whether we like the fact that the image we present is pivotal to success is not relevant. People are visual, and they remember the details even if we don’t choose to acknowledge this fact.

Another critical issue about details is that ignoring important information can ruin a person’s credibility. If you don’t believe me, take a look at some of the jobs where people glossed over safety protocols. All it takes is an accident to happen for someone to have a career ruined. The public isn’t very forgiving. Many mistakes occur in various companies that resulted in accidents, whether they involved safety or making a mess of a project. Here is my hope for you today. Open your eyes to the environments around you. What do you see that you can improve? Are there projects that you might have forgotten important details? If so, can you apply those details to make the project better, or is it great on its own? No matter what you do today, I feel that you won’t let the details slide. Each of you brings something unique to the table. Let the world see the brightness you bring to it, and have a great day, everyone!

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