There are patterns that you can spot in the most successful people. They are the little things that make them stand out as exceptional.
I had the privilege of seeing Hans Zimmer perform live with some of the world’s best musicians last Thursday at the Wembley Arena in London.
We arrived in plenty of time but actually missed the start of the show (8pm) because there were so many people still outside waiting to get in. There are, understandably, lots of extra security checks at most events in London at the moment. But the show must go on and it did.
During the performance, it was so very clear to see how much Hans Zimmer absolutely loves what he does and all the people he’s doing it with. You can spot patterns in the behaviour of lots of extremely successful people, but more specifically, there are 5 lessons that were reaffirmed for me that night…
1) Give to others much more than you take
There was a dreadful fire in London last week (14th June 2017). I cannot even begin to comprehend the impact that this has had and will continue to have on so many people’s lives.
Mr. Zimmer describes London as his “second home” and it was clear to see how deeply moved he was by the suffering of so many in his community. During one of his speeches to the audience, he decided to donate all the proceeds of his concert to the victims of the fire. It was very clear that this was completely unrehearsed and just something he had to do.
An incredibly noble act.
2) You will have a successful career if you live to serve
At end of each ‘movie segment’, Hans takes a brief interlude to tell some stories about his compositions, but absolutely none of it is about how great he is. He highlights the musicianship and quality of his band/orchestra and the directors he’s worked with over the years much more than anything he has to say about himself. He’ll bring someone up to the front of the stage with him, talk about their amazing career, their background and how long they’ve been working together. Then he embraces them and thanks them in front of everyone.
He’s even working with the children of the people he’s worked with! Nile Marr (Johnny’s son) is one of his guitarists and he performed with both Lebo M. and his daughter on the night.
By aiming to serve others as best as he possibly can, Hans Zimmer has become one of the most influential film composers of all time.
3) Put other people’s interests first
People don’t stay working with one company or one employer for many years if they don’t like what they’re doing. Or if they do, they’d have to ask themselves some serious questions!
It is clear that some of best musicians in the world have been brought together by Hans Zimmer to serve the music he has been asked to write and then perform that music for his audience. They’ve been playing together for many years and the bond is strong. His orchestra and band are serving the original concept for the music and making sure the audience comes first.
Not only that, but they’re there to have a good time. “To play”, as he puts it. He wants everyone involved to have fun and his influential positive energy is infectious.
4) Your most valuable gift is you
The little anecdotes and rambling stories are fascinating. He gets lost in thought, ideas, concepts and trying to get his point across. But he is real.
People have every right to feel disillusioned with the way the world works right now, but nothing shines brighter than positivity and authenticity.
Hans Zimmer is not the only wildly successful person to display these attributes.
Be real. Be you. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
5) Learn from your mistakes
One of the worst kept secrets is that Hans was a session musician in London back in the day and performed on ‘The Buggles’ track, ‘Video Killed The Radio Star’. On the night, he told a story about when, some time ago, Trevor Horn wanted Hans to join him in London to play the song live once again. Hans recalled that “he was grumpy and in the middle of a movie, so he didn’t go”. A friend of his called him on the night of the concert and played the song down the phone and Hans felt intense regret and sadness in the pit of his stomach.
Trevor Horn joined Hans Zimmer onstage last Thursday to perform ‘Video Killed The Radio Star’. I need say no more.
When you examine his volume of work and the sheer versatility of what he’s done over the years at such a high level, it seems almost impossible. That’s because it’s not just one man, but an entire network of amazing people that have worked with him and added value to each other over many years.
Some food for thought for us all…
An action step for you:
How can you take just one of these lessons/concepts and implement them into your life today? What can you do today to make a difference?
Leave a comment below to let me know what you’re going to do!
professional sounding mix every time…