Forbes recently ran an interesting story about a real estate executive who noticed that while empty nesters consistently said they wanted one thing in a house (no dining room, a large guest bedroom), they then turned around and bought the opposite (homes with large dining rooms). People thought they wanted one thing, but in reality they wanted something else altogether.
This is true in any aspect of life, not just home design.
In order to determine what you really want, you have to dig down to not just the core of your business, but the core of your values. You have to dig beyond what seems like a good concept on the surface and root out what brings you real joy. In the case of the home buyers, it was not the value of a new chapter in life but the value of family and the associated memories that drove their decisions.
What are the common threads among the memories you savor? What lights you up? What would cause you not to work with or to pull all your business from a company? (Your values aren't really values until they impact your wallet.) These may seem like trite questions, but honest answers to them typically don't come easy. Until you define what you value in life, you'll have a difficult time getting what you want.
Originally published May 2012