I confess, I am a Justin Timberlake fan. But, even if you do not have the kind of JT bromance that I do, there is something to learn from his performance during halftime at this year’s Superbowl.
As always, there were critics who called the show “lame”, “mediocre”, and even “boring”. These critics were not watching JT’s face.
I challenge you to watch it again. This time watch through a different lens. Maybe even turn the sound off. Focus on his face. Here’s a direct link: https://youtu.be/2z3EUY1aXdY
Do you see it? Unbridled confidence, without a trace of arrogance.
When I watch JT perform, whether it is this halftime show, or the Netflix special of a previous concert, or perhaps someday actually attending a concert in person, what I most admire and feel drawn to is that absolute confidence that he belongs on that stage.
Coupled with that confidence is an air of welcoming you, the viewer, to come along for the ride. There is a sense of, “Hey, let’s have some fun together.”
Some performers display confidence, but there is also an air of arrogance about it. It’s more exclusionary. It’s more like, “I deserve to be here. I’m better than you. Watch me. Aren’t I great?”
This same attitude plays out in places beyond the stage. Think about how your boss, or others up the executive chain, walk into a meeting room. Do they treat you like a stereotypical Catholic School teacher, telling you to sit down and shut up? Or are they like JT – clearly in charge of the situation, but inviting you to be an active participant?
How do YOU behave in this situation? When you are the one in charge, do you lord it over people? Or do you maintain order while inviting participation?
Exude confidence. But, in the words of Han Solo, “That’s great kid. Don’t get cocky.”