Important

In life, we often place merit on someone by the job they have. We may not mean to, but it’s no real fault of ours if we do – it’s been ingrained from us almost since we could walk.

Parents tell us to get an education, or we won’t get a good job.

Teachers tell us to study harder, or we won’t get a good job.

Potential girlfriends and boyfriends can decide whether or not we’re worthy of their attention, based on the job we have and the material things that can bring.

We see someone being chauffered from place-to-place and feel they must be really important.

Ironically, in social media, this feeling can be exacerbated.

Our blogs become popular; we get hundreds of thousands of followers on Twitter; conferences invite us to speak; we have badges of merit that show how smart we are.

When you have that kind of “adulation”, it’s easy to mistake your importance and think your job is something it’s not. Sure, you may have a great job with a personal secretary; or your golf course fees cost more than it takes to send a child through college; or your blog is quoted in the New York Times.

But does that make you owner of the most important job in the world?

Think about it:

If every single blogger in the world stopped blogging tomorrow, we’d still get our news and opinion pieces. They might be watered down a little, but we’d still get them.

If every chauffeur quit tomorrow, we’d still have cabs, buses, trains, motorbikes and even bicycles to get around on.

If every girlfriend or boyfriend dumped their partners tomorrow, we’d still get by on our imaginations. Life would go on.

Now think about some of the jobs we often look at as lesser, and ask the same question:

If every trash collector quit tomorrow, we’d be faced with disease on the streets as the rats came to town.

If every security guard quit tomorrow, our businesses might follow suit, as we see the bad people come to town.

If every sewage worker quit tomorrow, our streets would be overrun by crap.

If every school crossing guard quit tomorrow, how long would our children stay safe at busy intersections?

We look at life through funny lenses. We see people in lesser light when often we should be shining the light on them. We celebrate our own importance when, often, that importance could be survived if it were to disappear overnight.

The point is, we all have important stuff to do and offer. Let’s try remember that more – yes?

image: Auntie P

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Danny Brown
Co-author Influence Marketing: How to Create, Manage and Measure Brand Influencers in Social Media Marketing. #1 marketing blog in world as per HubSpot. Husband. Father. Optimist. Pragmatist. Never says no to a good single malt. You can find me on Twitter - Google+ - LinkedIn.

140 comments
Alvaro
Alvaro

I think each and every person should feel that his job is the most important job in the world. And not only should we say, "This is the most important job in the world." Our behavior / performance should reflect that.

Sydney @ Social Dynamics
Sydney @ Social Dynamics

I wish we have a different system about life and our pursuits. It muddles our brains. Growing up with that kind of thought, we are forced to believe that it's true and a fact of life. So we study and we inevitably look down on certain people and professions. But the truth is, we really shouldn't. If only.

Sydney
Sydney

I wish we have a different system about life and our pursuits. It muddles our brains. Growing up with that kind of thought, we are forced to believe that it's true and a fact of life. So we study and we inevitably look down on certain people and professions. But the truth is, we really shouldn't. If only.

ImagineBeauty_
ImagineBeauty_

I absolutely love this post. This is my very first time that I'm adding my comment here. I'm sure you all will begin to sense that English may NOT be my native language.. and you're right.. it's not. Hope you get the point. of what I'm about to write. :) I agree with bdorman264 on prejudgement. It's true that it's best not to prejudge circumstances or people until we walk in someone's shoes. What seems to be happening outwardly is quite often not exactly what it's actually going on. We tend to prejudge as if we know everything by what we had experienced, not realizing what we had experienced is only a little portion of what happened to the rest of the world as a whole. We just need to learn to develop some sensitive ears, eyes, mouth and heart to get a glimpse of what people may be going thru. It's not that hard, actually. We're all in the same boat and we learn as we go along, to be more sensitive to meet the needs of others. I just want to say, 'thank you,' Danny for your sensitivity and caring for the people who may be in need. I can sense it. We appreciate people like you. I'm pretty new w/ Social Media, especially with/ Twitter. I'm still in the process of learning how to build relationships with people in the social media network. A little bit about my experience w/Twitter so far...I find it very difficult to start the twitter conversation w/ people.. cuz (haha) some people are too busy with what they are doing, or they are not interested. :) So, I end up talking to myself. LOL I'm still going thru 'That Awkward Moment When...' hoping the conversation that I initiated would be responded. haha. I'm sure everyone went thru this before. Being curious about this and that, I often end up browsing thru people's websites or blog sites just to find myself looking like a stalker. -_-;; I apologize for writing such a lengthy comment that is beginning to be almost as lengthy as your blog content. Sorry. Thank you so much for sharing your post, providing us with informative facts and data, knowledges, as well as inspirational content. Your blog is one of the best blogs that I look forward to reading. May God bless you. -Saach W. I.

ImagineBeauty_
ImagineBeauty_

I absolutely love this post. This is my very first time that I'm adding my comment here. I'm sure you all will begin to sense that English may NOT be my native language.. and you're right.. it's not. Hope you get the point. of what I'm about to write. :) I agree with bdorman264 on prejudgement. It's true that it's best not to prejudge circumstances or people until we walk in someone's shoes. What seems to be happening outwardly is quite often not exactly what it's actually going on. We tend to prejudge as if we know everything by what we had experienced, not realizing what we had experienced is only a little portion of what happened to the rest of the world as a whole. We just need to learn to develop some sensitive ears, eyes, mouth and heart to get a glimpse of what people may be going thru. It's not that hard, actually. We're all in the same boat and we learn as we go along, to be more sensitive to meet the needs of others. I just want to say, 'thank you,' Danny for your sensitivity and caring for the people who may be in need. I can sense it. We appreciate people like you. I'm pretty new w/ Social Media, especially with/ Twitter. I'm still in the process of learning how to build relationships with people in the social media network. A little bit about my experience w/Twitter so far...I find it very difficult to start the twitter conversation w/ people.. cuz (haha) some people are too busy with what they are doing, or they are not interested. :) So, I end up talking to myself. LOL I'm still going thru 'That Awkward Moment When...' hoping the conversation that I initiated would be responded. haha. I'm sure everyone went thru this before. Being curious about this and that, I often end up browsing thru people's websites or blog sites just to find myself looking like a stalker. -_-;; I apologize for writing such a lengthy comment that is beginning to be almost as lengthy as your blog content. Sorry. Thank you so much for sharing your post, providing us with informative facts and data, knowledges, as well as inspirational content. Your blog is one of the best blogs that I look forward to reading. May God bless you. -Saach W. I.

bdorman264
bdorman264

It all fits together in this puzzle called life. We are no better or no worse than our fellow man and all should be treated with respect and treated like you would want to be treated. Sometimes it's circumstance and sometimes it's choice and most times it's best not to pre-judge until you walk a mile in someone's shoes.

That's about as philosophical as I can get today, so I will just leave this comment with you today.

bdorman264
bdorman264

It all fits together in this puzzle called life. We are no better or no worse than our fellow man and all should be treated with respect and treated like you would want to be treated. Sometimes it's circumstance and sometimes it's choice and most times it's best not to pre-judge until you walk a mile in someone's shoes. That's about as philosophical as I can get today, so I will just leave this comment with you today.

jasonkonopinski
jasonkonopinski

The Danny Brown perspective is always refreshing - and I always look forward to seeing you pop up in my stream. Social media thrives on ego and a bit of performance art - and we need to remind ourselves that what happens beyond the 140 that has real worth.

Latest blog post: Are You Restless?

jasonkonopinski
jasonkonopinski

The Danny Brown perspective is always refreshing - and I always look forward to seeing you pop up in my stream. Social media thrives on ego and a bit of performance art - and we need to remind ourselves that what happens beyond the 140 that has real worth.

Kneale Mann
Kneale Mann

I was at a client meeting last week at a national coffee chain establishment where they serve fancy hot and cold drinks with green smocks. The dude at the cash was more entertaining than half the people I have seen on TV lately. I asked him if he enjoyed his job and he said "love my job, are you kidding?!"

He make take home something just slightly higher than minimum wage but his share of the tip jar and he loves his job. I asked him about his career aspirations and he is saving to take his MBA and expects it will take him five years. This was not a guy with some plastered fake smile, he truly enjoyed serving customers and brighten our day.

If he quit tomorrow, my coffee machine would work just fine and at pennies on the dollar. I would meet clients and prospects elsewhere. But you cannot put a dollar figure on that interaction. I've been to the aforementioned coffee established once since I met him and as soon as I walked in, there he was greeting and serving customers with the same passion and energy.

I'm not a fan of blanket cliches save to say we are all important, we are all essential and if you think your job is important, it is, no matter what it is as long as you give it your all. That is something I had forgotten for a while. Lovely post, mate. Cheers! km

KnealeMann
KnealeMann

I was at a client meeting last week at a national coffee chain establishment where they serve fancy hot and cold drinks with green smocks. The dude at the cash was more entertaining than half the people I have seen on TV lately. I asked him if he enjoyed his job and he said "love my job, are you kidding?!" He make take home something just slightly higher than minimum wage but his share of the tip jar and he loves his job. I asked him about his career aspirations and he is saving to take his MBA and expects it will take him five years. This was not a guy with some plastered fake smile, he truly enjoyed serving customers and brighten our day. If he quit tomorrow, my coffee machine would work just fine and at pennies on the dollar. I would meet clients and prospects elsewhere. But you cannot put a dollar figure on that interaction. I've been to the aforementioned coffee established once since I met him and as soon as I walked in, there he was greeting and serving customers with the same passion and energy. I'm not a fan of blanket cliches save to say we are all important, we are all essential and if you think your job is important, it is, no matter what it is as long as you give it your all. That is something I had forgotten for a while. Lovely post, mate. Cheers! km

JGoldsborough
JGoldsborough

Solid perspective as always, my friend. Sometimes we need to look beyond our retweet and Facebook share buttons. If I could make a suggestion, I would add something to the list that we often don't consider a job at all -- being a parent. That's a job I hope to have someday and hope I'll do better than any other job I have throughout my career.

JGoldsborough
JGoldsborough

Solid perspective as always, my friend. Sometimes we need to look beyond our retweet and Facebook share buttons. If I could make a suggestion, I would add something to the list that we often don't consider a job at all -- being a parent. That's a job I hope to have someday and hope I'll do better than any other job I have throughout my career.

JudyDunn
JudyDunn

An amazing piece of insight here, Danny. As someone who has been both a teacher and a manager of a nonprofit whose work was creating projects to pull third world families out of poverty, I look at the social media celebrities differently. Many of them just seem a bit shallow to me. I think that "God" (Morgan Freeman) said it best in "Bruce Almighty." It was something like: "There's nothing wrong with hard work, son. Some of the happiest people in the world come home smelling to high heaven at the end of the day."

Of all the jobs in the world, I think that teachers and parents are the most important ones because they absolutely touch the future in an infinite sort of way. Loved this post, my friend. : )

JudyDunn
JudyDunn

An amazing piece of insight here, Danny. As someone who has been both a teacher and a manager of a nonprofit whose work was creating projects to pull third world families out of poverty, I look at the social media celebrities differently. Many of them just seem a bit shallow to me. I think that "God" (Morgan Freeman) said it best in "Bruce Almighty." It was something like: "There's nothing wrong with hard work, son. Some of the happiest people in the world come home smelling to high heaven at the end of the day." Of all the jobs in the world, I think that teachers and parents are the most important ones because they absolutely touch the future in an infinite sort of way. Loved this post, my friend. : )

Liz
Liz

We see people in lesser light when often we should be shining the light on them. Amen!

Liz
Liz

We see people in lesser light when often we should be shining the light on them. Amen!

danperezfilms
danperezfilms

Don't be fooled by the rocks that they got. Well said, Mr. Brown.

danperezfilms
danperezfilms

Don't be fooled by the rocks that they got. Well said, Mr. Brown.

3HatsComm
3HatsComm

I say it all the time, my offline friends haven't heard of almost anyone in the social space, not even Godin or Brogan. Almost all of this is lipstick on a pig to them, ways brands try to dress up and sell them crap. As a former server/bartender, as someone who has teachers and nurses in the family - those we don't pay near enough to clean up our crap, take care of us and today's kids - I can relate to this.

Not saying it's meaningless, what we do. Far from it. But it's a far cry from importance in the grander scheme. I used to joke that I'd never survive an island crash ala LOST; I'm not thin, attractive enough and don't have any survival skills, not much to contribute. On that note I'll quote a Despair poster: 'just because you're necessary, doesn't mean you're important.' FWIW.

3HatsComm
3HatsComm

I say it all the time, my offline friends haven't heard of almost anyone in the social space, not even Godin or Brogan. Almost all of this is lipstick on a pig to them, ways brands try to dress up and sell them crap. As a former server/bartender, as someone who has teachers and nurses in the family - those we don't pay near enough to clean up our crap, take care of us and today's kids - I can relate to this. Not saying it's meaningless, what we do. Far from it. But it's a far cry from importance in the grander scheme. I used to joke that I'd never survive an island crash ala LOST; I'm not thin, attractive enough and don't have any survival skills, not much to contribute. On that note I'll quote a Despair poster: 'just because you're necessary, doesn't mean you're important.' FWIW.

Marcus_Sheridan
Marcus_Sheridan

I love the 'Danny Brown Perspective' articles. You really know how to put things in order my friend. :-)

Thanks for what you do,

Marcus

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

@ImagineBeauty_ Hi there Saach,

Awesome comment, and never be afraid of length - just ask @ingrid abboud ! ;-)

Sorry to hear you feel that Twitter is being difficult - I hear you on making that first step. Perhaps you can listen only for a bit - see what others you are interested in are saying, what they're talking about, if you can help, etc, and then begin chatting with them?

That's the great thing about being "new" to anything - while it might seem a little daunting, there will always be people willing to say "Hi" and help you out. Sometimes you just need to ask. :)

Thanks for the kind words, too, really glad to have you on this part of the web,

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

@ImagineBeauty_ Hi there Saach, Awesome comment, and never be afraid of length - just ask ingrid abboud ! ;-) Sorry to hear you feel that Twitter is being difficult - I hear you on making that first step. Perhaps you can listen only for a bit - see what others you are interested in are saying, what they're talking about, if you can help, etc, and then begin chatting with them? That's the great thing about being "new" to anything - while it might seem a little daunting, there will always be people willing to say "Hi" and help you out. Sometimes you just need to ask. :) Thanks for the kind words, too, really glad to have you on this part of the web,

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

@bdorman264 Wise words, sir. Wise words. :)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

@jasonkonopinski Cheers, sir, and completely agree - when around 99% of the world doesn't know you exist, perhaps your ego is your own making... ;-)

Danny Brown
Danny Brown moderator

@Kneale Mann Awesome example, sir, and I always love it when someone is clearly so happy at their job. Some people are much better than others at being with the public, and if that's the case, why should that be looked down upon?

Imagine your coffee guy gets looked down upon by the CEO of a company whose pay is seven figures. The CEO thinks he's "just a coffee guy."

Thing is, the CEO gets coffee there each day and whether he knows it or not, is put in a better mood because of the infectiousness of the coffee guy. That helps make better decisions, making the CEO and his or her company more money.

Now - does the coffee guy deserve to be looked down upon? ;-)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

@KnealeMann Awesome example, sir, and I always love it when someone is clearly so happy at their job. Some people are much better than others at being with the public, and if that's the case, why should that be looked down upon? Imagine your coffee guy gets looked down upon by the CEO of a company whose pay is seven figures. The CEO thinks he's "just a coffee guy." Thing is, the CEO gets coffee there each day and whether he knows it or not, is put in a better mood because of the infectiousness of the coffee guy. That helps make better decisions, making the CEO and his or her company more money. Now - does the coffee guy deserve to be looked down upon? ;-)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

@JGoldsborough For sure, mate, and as a father to one and with another on the way, parent is definitely up there amongst the gold. :)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

@JudyDunn Haha, gotta love that Bruce Almighty quote, Judy! :) My grandpa used to say something similar, in that, "There's no better sweat than honest sweat." I think he meant pretty much the same thing, and that's always stuck with me. :)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

@3HatsComm Love the Despair quote, Davina. And completely agree - there's a big difference between being important and being self-important. Something a few folks in this "space" would do well to remember more often... ;-)

Craig McBreen
Craig McBreen

@DannyBrown@bdorman264 Bill is wise like that ;)

jasonkonopinski
jasonkonopinski

@DannyBrown And there you have it. Here at Correctnicity, we're not big on titles. 'I'm Jason and I work at Correctnicity.' :)

3HatsComm
3HatsComm

@Danny Brown Good one w/ the 'self-importance' sir, important distinction. Think people in pretty much any industry need to remember that: you may be a 'big' fish in your pond, but other people might not of even heard of those waters, it's all relative.

3HatsComm
3HatsComm

@DannyBrown Good one w/ the 'self-importance' sir, important distinction. Think people in pretty much any industry need to remember that: you may be a 'big' fish in your pond, but other people might not of even heard of those waters, it's all relative.

Craig McBreen
Craig McBreen

@DannyBrown@bdorman264 He defines the word :)

DannyBrown
DannyBrown

@bdorman264@Craig McBreen Modest, too...

bdorman264
bdorman264

@Craig McBreen@DannyBrown I am, aren't I?......:)