DMC Atlanta President Adam Dorfman Responds to the ALS #icebucketchallengeThroughout the two weeks leading up to August 16th, I received several "nomination" (i.e. dares/bets/challenges/bechawontdoits) to take on the #IceBucketChallenge to raise awareness and money for the ALS Association. The challenge is simple - someone dumps a bucket of ice water on their head and nominates a few other people either to do the dare or donate money to the ALS Association.
The concept seemed like a pretty cool idea, and I had all intentions of donating - and said I would accept the challenge when I had time. I was traveling a good bit, didn't make it a priority, and, quite frankly, REALLY did not want to dump a bucket of ice water on my head. My thought was - if I donate, I don't have to do the dare, right?
My mind changed on Friday August 15th. I was invited to speak at a leadership development conference in Toronto, Canada, along with some good friends I have made over my 12 years in the direct sales industry. While catching up over a couple of drinks with my friend Katie, one of the people who had nominated me, she started giving me a hard time for not following through, at which time I proceeded to tell her all my "reasons" that I "hadn't gotten to it" - when it dawned on me that I was, for lack of a better way of putting it, completely full of it and just making excuses.
Earlier Friday afternoon I had seen that Bill Gates accepted the challenge (in addition to making, what I would imagine to be, a VERY sizable donation) and proceeded to challenge some heavy hitters to accept the challenge as well. Once the conversation started, I quickly asked myself, "who the hell are you to say you don't have time to do this if BILL FREAKING GATES can make the time?"
I decided to follow the advice that I am constantly giving my team - If you're going to do something, do it big, call your shot, make no excuses, ask someone to hold you accountable. My friend Vera and I made the decision right then to accept the challenge, donate, challenge others, and do it in a big way - by asking our Keynote Speaker, former Navy S.E.A.L. and bestselling author Eric Greitens to be the one to dump water on our heads. Once I asked Eric, a man of INCREDIBLE integrity to participate - there was no turning back.
I hope you enjoy the video. Please consider making a donation to this amazing cause.
One final thought: Leadership, by definition, is influence. Bill Gates is SO influential that he is able to get people like Elon Musk, Ryan Seacrest, and Chris Anderson to participate and donate. While we may not be able to make so grand a statement as influencing heavy hitters to follow us, we each have a daily opportunity to choose how we influence those with whom we are in closest contact. Choose your actions and words wisely - you never know when you might change the world one little bit at a time.