I just got back from one of the coolest events I’ve ever been to – The Fashion Institute of Technology Gala in New York. It was cool because the fashion industry really knows how to throw a party. But two things made it even more memorable. One, I got to share the evening with my 12-year-old daughter, who loves all things fashion. And two, I got to see a friend honored for his contributions to the industry.
In the glitz and buzz that surrounds high fashion and New York, I was reminded that a good guy who makes the most of his gifts can inspire and lead others to great things. That’s Bill Dillard III – or as his friends call him, B3.
During the event, B3 took the stage and did what B3 always does – he stepped forward displaying humility and grace. He said thank you to people who’ve helped him along the way. He challenged the progressive industry and he inspired the most influential executives in the fashion business.
I’m not in the fashion industry, but B3 has had the same influence on me. I admire his humility and grace, his thoughtfulness, his savvy business presence and his edge. Because he’s my friend, I get to see his heart, as well.
From my perspective, it is easy to see that B3’s success has nothing to do with luck. He’s just gifted. B3 is one of the good guys – good motives, good talent, good character. Good guys (and gals) aren’t lucky. They are good and they are gifted. These people have been blessed with extraordinary skills and they don’t waste their talent – they maximize it. They have the courage to step up when others shy away or retreat. And they have the right motives that can be trusted.
We can all become one of the “good guys” who inspire others and succeed in business. To do so, we must constantly check our motives by asking ourselves, “are my intentions right and good, or are they behind self-centered power plays.” We must also develop by stretching ourselves and prioritizing our continuous improvement. And we must have the character to be trusted by others. That means we need to be consistent in our behaviors and authentic in who we are as leaders.
It was great to see such a leader honored. Thanks for being a wonderful example for me, B3. You’re a good man. Congratulations.