There’s a very inspiring project created by Dan Savage called It Gets Better, in which people lend their voices to LGBT teens to encourage them in the face of bullying and harassment. I added my own perspective and encourage you to add yours.
Hi. My name is Christopher Penn, Vice President of Strategy and Innovation at Blue Sky Factory, one of the Inc. 5000′s fastest growing companies in America. I have this message for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender kids. It gets better. It gets a lot better.
Here’s why: it gets better because after you leave the little fishbowl of school, there’s an entire world out there that needs your differences. Now, I have no experience of what it’s like to be gay or bisexual, but I do know what it’s like to be different, growing up as a minority in an overwhelming majority. The things that set you apart as different in school are in many cases the things that employers are desperately going to need when you’re out of school.
I work in marketing, and one of the hardest things in the world is to figure out what’s called a unique selling proposition, the thing that makes your product or service different. If you’re a member of the majority that’s never been different or experienced different, this is an incredibly difficult thing to do and it’s why the ads for so many products and services really suck.
If, on the other hand, you can see different, you can create different, you can think different, then you can be incredibly successful in business. Doing what everyone else is doing, trying to be what everyone else is will get you to second place at best. Only those folks who are different, who are willing to step outside the status quo and go where others are afraid to will succeed.
You feel different now and may feel like that’s a negative. It won’t be. Stay with us. Keep going. Keep persevering through other people’s shortsightedness, because in the real world, all of us need your differences on our team to succeed.
It gets better.
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