Monday, June 22, 2009

Heard: Humility Comes with Age and Experience

After my freshman year of college, I had the opportunity to intern at a private lobbying group. I was assigned to a very reluctant lobbyist, X, who basically ignored me, but allowed me to tag along to all his meetings with hill staffers.

I was never sure what I was supposed to do during those meetings, but I was always looking for opportunities to demonstrate all the skills and expertise I had acquired in my one year of college. During one meeting where he and another lobbyist were speaking with a senior staffer, I realized that I actually had some knowledge of what they were discussing. Wanting to contribute but not giving much thought to how I might interject my minuscule knowledge, I interrupted what X was saying, turned to the staffer and said "What X is actually trying to say is...." and proceeded to educate the staffer with the few facts I knew of.

The staffer looked scared and laughed nervously. X, God bless him, never said anything to me, and continued dragging me along to his meetings. Now, as a professional, I always keep the lesson in mind that humility comes with age and experience.