What’s Your Aroma?

Last August, our daughter, Collins, had the opportunity to shadow Ainsley Earhardt at Fox and Friends in New York City. It was a very special time…up at 3 a.m. In a cab at 4 a.m. Going through major security at 4:30. It was very eye opening to watch the “behind the scenes” of such a big production…and see the REAL WORK that goes into her job before she ever goes on camera.

When the moment of “lights, camera, action” finally came….the “game on” was a ton of pressure to GET IT RIGHT. I got to tag along…and I loved it. I took it all in. I especially loved how extremely KIND everyone was–from Hannity to the makeup artist…to Ainsley’s co-hosts to the camera men. It was the most positive experience. It created a picture in my mind I will never forget. What I came away with that day was the feeling that…..”everyone who worked there” loved their job, even at 4:30 a.m.!

Scrolling back to months before when Collins and I had lunch with Ainsley in Columbia, I can’t help but reflect on all that Ainsley shared about her journey from college to her work path that had led her to the Big Apple to the Big Stage of her career. It was fascinating….to listen and trace her life path. The one thing that really resonated with me was when she shared about the interview that landed her the job with Fox.

She had flown to New York for the interview and started the interview process by talking with an intermediate person who did an extensive interview. She was left waiting on the big interview by the decision maker. While she waited, a lady walked into the office where she was waiting. This lady picked up a few papers, grabbed some coffee and then offered Ainsley some…they had some small talk and she left. The person who did the first interview with Ainsley suddenly walked back in and offered her the job.

Of course Ainsley was thinking….”What about the interview with the decision maker?” The guy must have read her mind because he told her, “OH…you just had it…that was her that you talked to…..!” You get it…..the lady walked in like a nobody…she wanted to see the real Ainsley…..the one “NOT ON GUARD!” Ainsley tells the story better obviously….but the point of the story is that her final interview with the decision maker was an “Off guard” interview that came when she didn’t even have a clue!

Collins and I walked away from our lunch…talking about many things that we learned from Ainsley…that day. Not only was she warm, kind and smart, but she was willing to share things with us that I know will impact Collins and me for a lifetime. The one thing we still talk about is….how important it is to treat all people the same….from the President of something to the ….waiter/waitress at our table…to the clerk at a store. WE never know who….we may influence or make an “impression” on that will not only affect them but us as well.

I once read that the president of a company always made sure he got the opinion of the “doorman” of their office building. He would ask his opinion of the person coming in for a job interview or someone they were considering doing business with….making sure…of his trusted doorman’s impression of how the “interviewee” treated…him….to get the “real” picture of the person…he was considering hiring or working with!

I think that is a fabulous idea…if you want to know….really know a person…. we can all put on a “show” when the lights are on…but the real question is…..”HOW do we act when the cameras are off?” “How do we treat strangers or people that we come in contact with in our daily lives?” What kind of impression do we leave behind? Is it a “positive aroma” or do people need to light a “Yankee candle” to get rid of the stench we leave behind?

If we live by how God tells us to behave in scripture, then none of us would ever have a problem landing the job or the business deal. Ephesians 5:1, “Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”

Or Galatians 6:9, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to ALL people……”

And James 2:1-5, “My brothers, show no partiality as you hold the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory. For if a man wearing a gold ring and fine clothing comes into your assembly, and a poor man in shabby clothing also comes in, and if you pay attention to the one who wears the fine clothing and say, ‘You sit here in a good place,’ while you say to the poor man, ‘You stand over there,’ or, ‘Sit down at my feet,’ have you not then made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? Listen, my beloved brothers, has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom, which he has promised to those who love him?”

Today, look for the opportunity to be intentional about leaving a “positive aroma” where it is least expected.

I will leave you with a quote from one of my all time favorite people…Barbara Bush, “Never lose sight of the fact that the most important yardstick of your success will be how you treat other people – your family, friends, and co-workers, and even strangers you meet along the way.”

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  • Right on Sherry! Another great example of this is our friend Jane Robelot DeCarvahlo–she treats EVERYONE with kindness whether or not they’re a CEO or the garbage man. I saw this first hand when she was the CBS This Morning anchor. She greeted everyone there with a smile and genuine concern listening when she asked how they were-then the next day, she was ask the janitor she had spoken to in the hall the day before how his wife was feeling…it was amazing and humbling. I’ve been blessed to work for wonderful people like this as well–Bob Bradley was the epitome of such a man. He was Clemson’s Sports Information Director for close to 40 years and he didn’t care if you were the sports writer for the New York Times or the Greer Gazette–he took everyone out to the Hwy 52 Fish Camp for supper the night before the Tigers played football. He treated everyone with respect.

    Our world could use a few more Ainsleys, Janes and Bob Bradleys…..