-Cindy Jones-Nyland, CMO *Originally posted on LinkedIn
The seeds of my relationship with Jane Mosbacher Morris and TO THE MARKET (TTM) were planted during a trip to Malawi. I was beyond lucky to lead a delegation of female leaders (rockstars) (and Joe - who is also a superstar!) on a Heifer International Program visit. These women (and Joe!) and the people we met in Malawi altered my journey. The visit opened the door to new and unexpected opportunities and our bonds continue to enrich my life. Every day that shared experience grows even more fruitful and the everlasting energy keeps pouring out. Rachel Faucett was one of the women on our trip, she generously introduced me to Jane at a Disney dinner a few years ago at the Orlando Mom 2.0 Summit. Jane is the Founder and CEO of TO THE MARKET and author of Buy the Change You Want to See. It has been an incredible opportunity to work with Jane and her team at TTM and it has taught me even more about life's path and the importance of showing up to what shows up.
Last week we launched Jane's book, Buy the Change You Want to See, in New York. It was a week filled with passion, perseverance, and teamwork. I also learned three important things about Jane, TO THE MARKET, and what it takes to seize every moment. We started publication day with a voice mail from one of her dear friends and she quoted Gloria Estefan. "Get on your feet, get up and make it happen." It was perfect.
The harder you work, the luckier you get. No question. Jane hustles. Hustle is the oxygen that fuels even more energy. A few years ago I attended a workshop with Plenty Consulting. Many things have stuck with me, but this one more than everything else - and it's a thread for my life. "Show up to what shows up." It's hustle, it's your attitude, it's your edge. We showed up at Barnes & Noble on 46th and 5th at 8AM - Jane's book went on sale and we wanted to see it in person before we kicked off the day. It was not on the shelves. By the time we left the shop, the business book manager had impromptu greeted us, put it on the shelves (in the front of the store) and wanted Jane to sign books. It set the tone for the entire day. Hustle matters. It can be the difference between success in a defining moment or missing a huge opportunity.
Angela Duckworth talks about grit and the importance of it in achieving success. She defines it as “passion and perseverance over time.” She writes that gritty individuals approach things as a marathon, not a sprint and optimize success with added stamina. As a new author and female founder, grit mixed with grace, can be a powerful combination. It means pushing on after potential setbacks, finding solutions to unexpected challenges and knowing that details matter. It combines sheer will and a deep commitment to what you are trying to achieve. Jane certainly rises to the occasion. On launch day, we packed the day to the last single minute. We covered 20,000+ steps, practiced interview questions in every corner of the day – including the women’s lounge in a department store (avoiding the cold rain), and getting shoes stuck in subway grates running from one place to the next. Every minute mattered. Grit (and peanut M&M’s) kept us moving.
3. Sense of Humor
Running a company, raising capital and launching a book definitely come with stress and anxiety (for anyone). Laughter is contagious and can lift moods immediately. It can get silly and still be serious. It’s an important quality to not take yourself too seriously and give light to humor, humility and kindness for keeping perspective. Our last stop of media interviews for the day was planned with Carol Massar and Jason Kelly on Bloomberg Businessweek. (*interview at the 6 minute mark) We had been swept away to the green room halfway through snagging a lunch of popcorn and chocolate from their open “food court” (it’s amazing!) We grabbed a seat to take a small break and then out of nowhere, we found ourselves in an eruption of laughter – I can only say it was out of sheer relief. It immediately relaxed the moment and provided levity. It opened the door for joy and gratitude.
During the launch week, laughter was a secret ingredient.
Jane’s book gives us a way to engage and understand our purchasing power differently. It inspires us to use our buying behavior as a superpower and commit to becoming a more conscious consumer. But, I also think it is a lesson in grit, hustle, sense of humor and a deep commitment to integrity and values. Opportunities can show up in unlikely places. It’s our job to rise up to meet them.