Have You Identified Your Unique Contribution?

What do you do more effectively than anybody else?


Brian Wells, co-founder of Flashlight Entertainment, challenges leaders and followers alike to stop and consider the unique value they bring to their teams and organizations. He recalls that it took years for him to realize his differentiating contribution. Once he did, he was able to drive innovation and simplicity within his organizational culture. 

When leaders communicate the unique value each team member brings, they allow those around them to make a difference and create positive employee engagement.

Watch this video and evaluate your role in your organization.

I remember when we first started making movies. Probably in about the third movie or so, I got so frustrated because it was just, it was so hard, so hard. Like one of the things I didn't realize, I wasn't naive, I knew going in that, you know, it's hard to make a good movie. What I didn't know was it's hard to make a bad movie. It's like a miracle anybody makes anything. But even making a bad movie is excruciatingly difficult. And I started to get kind of this attitude until, you know, one day I realized and I looked around at the team that we were working with and the director and the writer and the whole production team and everything, and I realized, "What's my contribution to this as a producer?"

And I realized that I'm kind of here to solve problems. That's my thing. As a matter of fact, if there aren't any problems, I'm not needed. So it was an acute realization to me that, you know what, as a producer, as a leader of something, problems are my paycheck. I think for me, when I made that shift, what I started to see was, actually, you'd like to think things worked better. What I actually started to see was I got more problems brought to me. I got more problems. But I found what was going on was people were bringing them to me because they found that I was actually empowering them to make a difference. It wasn't a problem for them to bring me a problem.

As a matter of fact, I remember the very first movie we did. It was the day before our first day of shooting. I was at the hotel, up in the wildness of Quebec, getting ready to shoot the next day and had breakfast with my director. He tells me that his guild has contacted him and told him to pull off the project because all the paperwork had not been signed properly. I've got a $10 million budget here, and they're pulling my director off it the day before. And realizing, I had to kind of go back to my room and kind of deal with that kind of that paranoia there, and then say, "Okay, now, who is going to solve this?"

I started looking for the phone for who I was going to call to solve that, and I realize, well, that's actually me. I am kind of the guy to do that. That was kind of the first realization, for me, that these are the times when actually my job kind of kicks in, where I am supposed to do it.

And then on the back end of stuff like that, not that it always works out perfectly, the back end of that is this huge payoff when you actually do make a difference in that, and you see, "Wow, without me here, that wouldn't have happened."

Brian Wells

Brian Wells’ entrepreneurial ventures kicked off at the age of nine when his mom caught him selling his deceased grandfather’s belongings to the neighbor kids out of the family garage. It was Brian’s first lesson in how even the most ...

Take Action

Complete the following Action Items to put the insights in this video into practice,
and share them with your team to continue your leadership growth.

Perfect your new leadership skills every day with these exclusive Leadercast exercises, available to Subscribers! Click here to become a Subscriber.

Liquid error: No such template 'platform/programs/search-modal'