There's More to Work than Business

Everybody has bills to pay. We all know that.

But how we go about fulfilling those obligations leaves room for choice. I've noticed that some folks have a broader view of their job than others. And as a result, conduct themselves differently.

For example, here in the Bay Area, we have a young man playing basketball for the Golden State Warriors named Stephen Curry. Among his many accomplishments, he's a two-time all star, NBA MVP, world champion, husband, and father of two daughters. I visit him at his office as much as possible. In fact, I'm a season ticket holder. 

Professional basketball is an expensive pastime. I signed up when the Warriors were a losing team. That story is interesting in itself, but I'll save it for another time. My motivation was to spend quality evenings with my teenage boys. Mission accomplished. I have many great memories with them at Oracle Arena.

In order to support my visits to Mr. Curry's office, I have to sell he bulk of my tickets each season. This arrangement has had its own benefits, chief among them is meeting other dads with young ones who have the same intentions as mine.

Last night, one of those dads, Joe, took his son to see the Warriors for his birthday.  I advised Joe to go early while the players were warming up, and to show his son where to position himself to get autographs. My boys loved doing this.

"But don't get you hopes up," I cautioned. Most players don't sign, and you never know what, if anything, you'll get. I crossed my fingers for them and waited to hear back the next day.

Stephen Curry signing autographs at Oracle Arena. Photo by Joe Ghio.

Joe wrote me and said they had a great time. He thanked me for the tip and said his son was very happy. Attached to the email was this photo of Stephen Curry signing. The stars were shining for them last night.

Some people are better at their jobs than others. We pay Stephen to help us win basketball games. He does that very well. But he takes it upon himself to go beyond that. 

On these nights, while he's preparing to battle men much larger than himself, he looks up and sees a line of young fans standing along the edge of the tunnel, clutching Sharpies in hand. And on many of those nights, he stops for a moment to create as many memories as possible.

Is it because he's a father too? I don't know. But I believe what makes some people special goes beyond the definition of their job. It's what I call court vision. Seeing that there's more to work than just business.