I recently read an interesting article in an industry publication. Its purpose was to serve as a reminder for those of us who are in the financial services profession. It said that we need to truly believe in what we’re doing as professionals—that is, doing good in the world by serving our clients.
The article went on and stated that it’s too bad we can’t all read our obituaries and determine how other people view our life. There is at least one exception to this and that is Alfred Nobel.
Nobel was the wealthy Swedish businessman who established the Nobel Prize. He had invented dynamite and became one of the world’s largest producers of explosives. When his brother died in a test of explosives, a newspaper mistakenly printed Alfred’s obituary instead of his brother’s. It read:
“The Merchant of Death is dead . . . Dr. Alfred Nobel, who became rich by finding ways to kill more people faster than ever before, died yesterday.”
When Alfred read it and saw that his life amounted to so much destruction and killing, he was devastated. He decided to do something to benefit humanity, and he used his fortune to establish the Nobel Prize for people who do good in the world. Do you believe in the value of what you do?