This week I was fortunate to have attended the VAMFF Buisness Seminar, an event organised largely for those in the Fashion industry, but nonetheless still valuable to me as one working in the business of Media and Entertainment. Both worlds after all, are made up of similar issues and challenges, often behind the mask that is what we term ‘glitz and glamour.’
Learning and accumulating knowledge from others who are better and different to myself, has always been of deep interest, and the conference/seminar environment in particular, is one that I’ve always enjoyed and seek out to experience as much as I can. There is always (at the very least), one positive thing that I can take away from each event that I have attended of this nature.
However this time around, there was more than just a single takeaway, though each of the nuggets of inspiration that I accrued at the seminar did come from the one man – James ‘JC’ Curleigh. JC is more than just the President of the Levi’s brand. He is a global leader, innovative thinker, passionate doer.
Needless to say, I was inspired from the moment he walked onto the stage. With a video graphic of a swinging pendulum in the background, JC opened his talk by defining Newton’s Three Laws of Motion. Seamlessly, he went on to connect the science of Physics with the business world, how for every action, there is an opposite reaction, how Mass (being your product/brand) multiplied by Acceleration (your marketing strategy) equals Force (the strength and energy of your business).
He demystified the notion that we must always choose between one thing or another. To be Iconic or Innovative, Accessible or Aspirational, Simple or Sophisticated – he challenged us to replace the word ‘or’ with ‘and’ because striving for both leads to progress and puts you and your business in better stead for the future.
It was clear to me that JC’s presentation stood out from the rest. He spoke with passion, expertise, spirit and conviction. He was as perfect an ambassador for his brand as any president should be. In context of the seminar, it was a true case of saving the best for last.
Perhaps my admiration is heightened because of how much JC’s presentation resonated with my life at this very point.
He spoke of momentum; specifically, finding and acknowledging the moments that create momentum. For me, hearing this has become key to my development career-wise as well as on a personal level. I learned to never underestimate the moments in my life that have contributed to where I am now, even though I am not yet quite where I want to be.
Since establishing my resolutions to better look after myself this year, physically, mentally and emotionally, I can confidently report that I do feel, right now, that I have the momentum. I am learning to embrace the present whilst making good progress towards the future.
As JC puts it, I am ‘protecting my core but expanding for more.’
And it feels great.