In the herd, the buffalo usually run when the lion pounces for the kill. Sometimes the herd is bold. Sometimes a group stands up and fights the lion so that valuable herd member survives. Will the herd protect you, even to their own peril?

Sometimes I don’t fit in with the herd. I don’t always follow the rules. I don’t consider myself a rebel, but I’m not a blind follower. I don’t agree with “the way we’ve always done it” or “best practices” or “goals”. Sometimes I get strange looks when I say these things, but my herd has my back because I’ve got theirs.

Has anyone ever said these things at a funeral/retirement party/going away party? 

“We loved him/her because
– she was so good at following the rules”.
– he scored high on his audits”.
– she met the deadlines”.
– he wrote good posts on LinkedIn”.
– she was just like everyone else”.
Probably not.

What will they say
– about that thing she built?
– about his latest creation?
– when she leaves office?
– when she is out if the room?
– when the lights go down?
– about what she meant to the world?
– about his ability to connect? How he made people feel?
– in 10 years?
– when she is dying?
– after he is dead?

They might say:
“She will be missed because she
– created that thing”.
– always made me laugh”.
– made me/them/the world better”.
– connected with everyone”.
– was honest”.
– cared about me”.

“I mean, they say you die twice. One time when you stop breathing and a second time, a bit later on, when somebody says your name for the last time.” – Banksy

Will they say anything? Did she make an impact? Was it positive? Who will be listening when they say it? How do you want to be remembered?

Have the courage to write your eulogy and work backwards. Have the courage to be who you want to be, not just who they expect you to be. Be the buffalo that matters.

What will they say about you? I’d love to hear it in the comments.
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