Serving others

For the past few days I’ve been preparing for an auction tonight, 9/25. Seven consignors have brought me items to sell ranging from gold and silver jewelry to primitives to tools to furniture to household items. This will be the largest consignment auction I’ve had this year.

Preparing for this auction has been challenging. My grandson, who usually helps me set up and works the ring, is in Florida for their annual two-month getaway. My daughter also works my auctions so I’ve had to get two people to fill in. The lady who handles food for my auctions has had shoulder surgery and is unable to be there. My wife has helped me set up the auction on her day off. With more furniture than usual and lots of heavy boxes to haul to the auction site, set up wore us both out.

But, it’s all ready to go. The advertising has been sent out, and now we pray that a good crowd will show up ready to buy the items we’re selling. Most of the consignors for this auction were trying to downsize, and this auction will help them get rid of items they no longer need. Some need the payout they’ll receive for personal reasons. Regardless of the reason, this auction will help each consignor reach goals they’ve set for themselves. My ability to serve them in this regard makes the hard work worthwhile.

Regardless of what you do for a living, you need to have a purpose beyond earning a paycheck. Yes, we all need money to survive in this world, but if that is the only reason you are in the career you are in, you’re in it for the wrong reason. A far better purpose for doing what you do is to serve others.

A few years ago I read a marvelous book by Rabbi Daniel Lapin. In Thou Shall Prosper: Ten Commandments for Making Money¬†he explained that when your clients give you money they are giving you certificates of appreciation for serving them well. What a marvelous way of looking at one’s career! Whether you own your business or work for someone else you are given certificates of appreciation for serving. In theory, the better you serve the more certificates you’ll receive.

That’s why I don’t apologize when I tell people my fees for conducting an auction. I can’t promise anyone they will get the most money when they sell at my auctions. No honest auctioneer can promise that. I can promise them that no one will work harder to serve them and help them achieve their goals.

In an earlier business I owned I kept a sign in the lobby that read “We offer the best products in town, the best service available, and the lowest prices. You can now pick two of the three.” When you offer a good product and excellent service you never have to be ashamed when they reward you for that.

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