Sounds like a pretty self-serving title doesn’t it? But it is also kind of catchy, maybe that’s just because it’s me. But the thing is, I didn’t think of it. And that’s what’s kind of unique about it.
When I was working voraciously in the community college to climb the rungs into leadership, one of the deans said to me sort of jokingly, “Its the Craven Effect,” when I’d tell her about something new that was happening in my life that was taking me to another level. But every level that was reached was by way of connecting with people.
I landed a full-time job with benefits at the college in an administrative position of leadership because I had a three minute conversation with the college president over meatballs. The conversation did not involve me pleading with him to give me full-time work. We were really just talking about food and meatballs. I also learned that his favorite snack was Barbecue Fritos. Three days later, I was offered a full-time position.
In the conversation he asked me what I did at the college and if I had previously been a student there. I answered but kept the conversation open for both of us to speak. It wasn’t solely about me and how great I was. It was partially how great I was and how great he was.
That last line probably rubbed someone the wrong way, which is to be expected because we’re told to be humble and modest and never think that we actually have anything great to offer. Well, I think it’s pretty damn important to know your value and know the things you’ve been gifted to do. The moment you walk into the territory of believing yourself to be superior to others because of your gifts and talents, that’s when you’ve gone too far. But recognizing what’s great within yourself and especially what’s great within others, that’s a call on all of our spirits we should heed. If I think I suck, how can I call out greatness in someone else. I don’t even believe greatness to be a part of me, how can I see it in another. And how in the world could I ever pull it out of another. I can’t. I have to recognize what’s great within me in order to help someone pull out what’s great within them.
When I talked about the meatball story to my dean friend she simply put her hands in the air and said, “The Craven Effect.”