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"What Would You Do If You Weren’t Doing This?"

Life Lessons Series: Six of One Dozen of the Other- "What Would You Do If You Weren't Doing This?"


Luke Combs' song "Doin' This" is his tribute to his passion for music. He sets the stage with a question he receives: "What would you do if you weren't doing this?" The singer goes on to confess that if he wasn't a chart-topping country music singer, he would still be making music. "I'd have a Friday night crowd in the palm of my hand. Cup of brown liquor, couple buddies in a band. Singing them same damn songs like I am now. I'd be feeling on fire on a hardwood stage. Bright lights like lightning running through my veins.” Combs sings of his love of music and performance.

To me the lyrics are so powerful, they inspire me. I want to enjoy what I do for a living. To respect and appreciate the people I work with. I want to adore my family and the friends that I choose to surround myself with. To create events and memories that leave me smiling and wanting to do them again. I want to have passion for the choices I make and the life I create. Life is a short game; I want to enjoy it both personally and professionally. I am willing to put effort into this to improve my days and those of the people around me.

Have you ever known someone that absolutely loves what they do? Someone who has never worked a day in their life because of their passion for their job. A person who looks forward to Monday morning. I have had the pleasure of meeting two people like this. One was an under-water photographer and the other a teacher. I enjoyed each and every conversation with both of them. When they talked about their work, their eyes were shining and their faces lit up. I could not get enough of listening to them. Neither had two nickels to rub together yet it is like they had found the gold at the end of a double rainbow.

So how do you create this kind of passion for what you do and engage others around you with the same sense of excitement? One three letter word. It is time to bring the FUN back!

Accept that COVID Changed Corporate America

We are still coming out of all the changes that COVID created. One of which is that it is not possible to simply go back to the way things were pre-pandemic and how business and employees were managed. Employees were able to taste a bite of the golden apple, i.e., working remotely from home. Many employees do not want to go back to working in an office- even to a hybrid approach. They want flexibility and a stronger work-life balance. And it is not just employee attrition where this is seen when employers push to the pre-pandemic model. What is worse, is that employees may have begrudgingly come back to the office while they left their attitude of service behind.

Studies have shown excellence in customer service is 80% attitude and 20% skills or knowledge. Cultivating the right employee attitude provides an employee with the approach needed to use their skills and knowledge to their potential, even if they are light on know-how. This attitude of service will earn companies repeat business. It will build loyal customers who not only keep coming back, but also refer other customers. When customers have a good experience, they will tell 3-5 people. When customers have a bad experience, they tell 12-15 people.

The opposite of an attitude of service, is an “attitude of indifference.” And the primary cause for people to quit buying a product or service is an attitude of indifference. After teaching customer service for more than 20 years I look for great service right along with this attitude of indifference. This attitude of indifference is at an all-time high post pandemic. It is so bad I regularly hear employees openly disclosing to customers in face-to-face interactions how little they care about the business and the customers. My husband and I were in a restaurant just last night where we watched customers come in and leave based on the slow and rude the service of the bar tender was. He then complained loudly about the lack of business and his declining tips…that we were watching him lose! Companies whose employees have this attitude of indifference tend to quickly find themselves in dire straits. It can be hard for executives to recognize. Typically it is seen with rapidly declining business. And once it hits, it is extremely difficult to repair.

Employees Don’t Want the Mansion and the Yacht

Ok so maybe employees do want a mansion and a yacht, yet at the same time they know this is not going to happen. Employees want to be recognized the way they feel most comfortable. A good leadership team knows their staff and what this means. Simple things go a long way: a hello, a smile, asking about meaningful things (children, pets, elderly parents, a new house, a car, a vacation, etc) that show you care and are listening. Employees almost always love food as a celebration: donut days, bagel Fridays, pizza parties, monthly cake celebrations for accomplishments, ice cream socials. It does not have to be fancy or expensive. It needs to be personal and include engagement with leadership and staff to be successful and show employees they are an asset and not a liability. Good leaders and managers know how to bring the fun. Fun needs to happen frequently and overtly. Fun goes a long way to overcoming an attitude of indifference. Fun can be easily delivered remotely or in an office.

Fun, Pun Employee Recognition Gift Ideas

Here are a dozen simple and inexpensive Fun, Pun Employee Recognition Gift Ideas to try…I have more for any that are interested in giving these a try- email me at

1. Ball – You’re a ball to work with!

2. Balloon –Thanks for helping us expand and grow!

3. Bandage – Thanks for covering us in a difficult situation.

4. Book – You’re number one in our book.

5. Cake or Cupcakes – You take the cake as an outstanding employee.

6. Candle, Match, Star or Light Bulb – No one can hold a candle to you!

7. Coin – Thanks for your “Good Cents!”

8. Electrical wire or a battery – Thanks for energizing our organization.

9. Fortune Cookie – We are so fortunate to have you as an employee.

10. Glove –Give yourself a warm round of applause for the great

job you do!

11. Gum – Thanks for sticking with us and making such a difference.

12. Heart – Thanks for caring and giving more than you ever receive.


In closing, the question remains, "what would you do if you weren't doing this?" I think we all want to answer that we would be living the same life if we were not doing this. Life gets in the way of that always being possible. It takes a concerted effort and a strong approach to live your best life. Identifying what you actually bring to your personal and professional relationships is a great starting point. Do you really hate your job? If you do, you should look outside for something that gives you more happiness and satisfaction. You owe this to yourself in this short game of life. Staying is a disservice to yourself and those around you- personally and professionally. If you choose to stay and walk in a room and people avoid eye contact, their eyes glaze over, they frown, and or cross their arms- know that you have some work to do to bring the fun back. Listen to people. Hear what they are saying. Extend beyond your comfort zone to improve the experiences for the people in your life both personally and professionally. Continue allowing for out of the box solutions – that launched during the pandemic- to bring back smiles, an attitude of service and the feeling that everyday has brought the brilliance of a rainbow to your day and to those around you.

What is Your Life Lesson…

  1. Have you met a person who has never worked a day in their life?

  2. Do you strive to create passion for what you do and engage others around you with the same sense of excitement?

  3. Do you bring the FUN?

  4. What would you do if you weren't doing this?

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