I’m a fan of The Voice. I didn’t know Pharrell Williams until he became a coach on the show. Now I’m a huge fan of this man who is deeply in service, a person who cares profoundly about others. Who he is shows in many ways. Here’s what I learned from watching Pharrell on The Voice.
Pharrell encourages artists to sing from their heart
Whatever our field, we know that our best work comes from our heart, from being true to our own passion and from sharing generously of ourselves. Pharrell tells the singers he coaches that when they sing from their heart, the rest will follow. When you write a blog post, are you singing from your heart? When you create a course or coach a client or lead a webinar, are you singing from your heart?
Pharrell offers people a strong helping hand
There’s a very subtle way in which I’ve seen Pharrell serve others. In the knockout rounds on The Voice, the coaches have to choose between two people on their own team who they’ve paired together and coached. One of the motivations for the choice a coach makes could be to choose the artist that most likely could win the competition for the coach’s team. But that’s not where Pharrell seems to be coming from. Several times, when he has a choice between two singers, I saw him choose the one who is really good but needs more time or more coaching. He releases the one he knows will be picked up by another coach. He chooses the singers for whom he can make the most difference. He is totally in service to the contestants and keeps himself deeply focused on their success.
Pharrell recognizes and addresses the needs of the people around him
Pharrell is a singer/songwriter, rapper, record producer, and fashion designer. He constantly seeks to meet the needs of the communities he serves. He looks for the concerns, the problems, the wishes and desires of the people he wants to reach. When one member of his team lost, he took her into the studio to explore how she felt and a new song emerged from the collaborative experience. We all try to understand the emotions of our community. It’s fascinating to watch where and how Pharrell searches for inspiration.
Pharrell is generous with his talent and knowledge
He’s a world-class musician and he gave one of his team’s finalists one of his original songs to sing for her final round. That’s hugely generous. But he felt the match. He knew she was the right artist to deliver his song. He’s excited by new talent and new possibilities. He loves to mentor.
Pharrell is deeply in service
Contestants in the blind auditions get to choose from the coaches that turn around for them. Each coach “pitches” the contestants to get them on their team. Pharrell never talks about his team, or winning; he always talks about what he sees in the artists and how he wants to help them fulfill their dream. It is fascinating to watch what he says. It is always about the contestant.
What I learned from Pharrell:
- Communicate from your heart
- Give everything you have
- Do your best to help the other person succeed
- Don’t be concerned about winning; be focused on how you can help the other person do their very, very best. Their success is your big win.
Watching Pharrell share the stage with the other coaches, watching him honor the people he’s working with is just more evidence of his generosity of spirit.
I know Pharrell wins major music awards. I know people love his music. His team member won The Voice one season, but that’s not the point. My life got better when I observed a loving heart in action and the effect it has on everyone around him. You know that all of his music comes from his heart—just as his life does. Thank you, Pharrell, for living with an open heart and coming from a deep place of service. You inspire me to sing a deeper song.
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