First of all…Greensboro is finally getting a Trader Joe’s.
So, we may be a tad excited about this event. It’s like Santa Claus is real, and he’s bringing seasonally appropriate Joe Joe’s cookies for everybody.
I may have listened to the “Inside Trader Joe’s” podcast on my way to school yesterday to re-myelinate those Fearless Flyer neurons.
I am excited!
What I LEARNED by listening to the podcast was that TJ’s has seven core values.
And I thought to myself, “Self, what if an artist were to apply these seven values to his or her life and career?”
So let’s talk about that.
Trader Joe’s version of Drumstick roll, please……()
INTEGRITY: In the way we operate stores and the way we deal with people. Act as if the customer was looking over your shoulder all the time.
You know how your mama told you, “Character is who you are when nobody is looking”?
Well, TJ asks their team to pretend that someone is indeed looking.
What if we approached our art and life in the same way?
Even now as I type, I’m looking a lot more professional and focused pretending you’re sitting here scrutinizing my every key stroke.
Integrity speaks of integration. That means what I say, what I believe, and what I value cohere with what I do.
That’s where the somebody’s waaaatchin’ mee-eeeee principle comes in.
We all spot these areas of dis-integration if we’re paying any kind of attention to our behavior–our actions don’t exhibit what we say we want or believe.
Sometimes that means that we actually need to track it back and examine what our values truly are.
We often live on auto-pilot, animated by background software programmed by influencers with whom we never resonated.
That’s why the intonation is off. We’re not in tune.
So if you’re standing in an audition room, and you think your priority is working in the theatre or getting a job, but your real core value is integrity or respect, you won’t be connected to what naturally keeps your fire going.
The real question should be, “How can I integrate my truest values into what I’m doing here today? Into this song, this poem, this dance, this sink full of dishes?”
Let’s take integrity and respect and put them into an audition.
You can enter the room having done the work, learned the sides, made authentic choices rooted in your point of view and your understanding of the author’s intentions.
From there, you can collaborate and offer your heart energetically and generously for the solution to the role you’re playing in that moment.
When you leave the room, you’ve come through for yourself. The outcome is (and has always been) out of your hands.
You feel satisfied that you’ve done excellent work that’s authentic to you and integral to your values. You’ve respected yourself and the table people.
Back to TJ: If you are thinking of how you can best serve your customers in everything you do, how would that change your art? If you think about who it is for, how will that inform what you do?
It’s already highlighting some areas I want to change.
Happy integration, you all! Stay tuned for tomorrow’s value: Product-driven.
***A career coach led me to a great resource that helped me clarify my values. It’s a forced choice matrix that helps things become very clear. Here you go:
And FYI here are my top ten:
|1. Faith||(17 votes)|
|2. Peace||(16 votes)|
|3. Gratitude||(16 votes)|
|4. Kindness||(15 votes)|
|5. Significance||(13 votes)|
|6. Trust||(13 votes)|
|7. Wisdom||(13 votes)|
|8. Joy||(10 votes)|
|9. Respect||(10 votes)|
|10. Growth||(8 votes)|