Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Sincerity of Taking Risks

The earflaps of his hat were flipped down for the cold. His fingerless gloves seemed appropriate. He was holding a guitar after all.

"Can I play a song for you?"

If he had been on a street corner, my mom would have thought "panhandler" and walked on by. But here he was standing at her front door with a guitar and a satchel full of CD's.

"Can I play a song for you?

"I've produced a CD and I'm selling them door-to-door. I'd like to play a song for you if I can. Your sheriff neighbor liked it and bought a CD."

In today's world of instant connections to thousands of people through Facebook, Twitter, and Email he was going door-to-door to make his CD sales for Christmas. Ten dollars per CD, one door at a time.

Was it efficient? Probably not. One song per door, plus walking, plus explanation, plus rejection meant a lot of time invested for a small amount of sales.

Was it risky? Sure. He put his reputation on the line with every strum of the guitar. He had to face the rejections head on. He had to brave the elements, too.

Was it sincere? As sincere as it gets. One man, one guitar, willing to put his reputation and self-esteem on the line for you just to get a $10 sale.

Did it work? Mom only had a $20 bill. She gave one CD to me, one to my uncle.

Sometimes sincerity and risk outweigh efficiency. If he hadn't taken such a risk, I never would have heard his CD... ...and it's pretty good.

What are you willing to risk?

-Phil

PS The artist in this story is Rob Vischer. Check him out.

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