Actor and newly-minted Golden Globe Award winner Jeffrey Tambor took the stage on Tuesday with an unassuming manner and dry wit. His message, though, to the PPAI Expo audience was one of inspiration and motivation to grow their businesses and improve their lives.
“Eighty percent of people have stopped. They’ve stopped creating and have settled for more comfortable lives,” said Tambor, who has starred in television shows such as Arrested Development and Transparent, for which he won a Golden Globe award on Sunday. “I’m about discomfort. You owe it to all of us to get on with what you’re good at. The joy of life is doing your job as best as you possibly can all the time. Half-assed doesn’t cut it.”
Dressed in a white checked button-down shirt, gray sweater-vest and black jeans, Tambor, 70, entertained and motivated the PPAI Expo crowd by weaving his trying personal story into his overarching message of overcoming fear and reaching your full potential. Tambor admitted to being sober for 15 years now after struggling with alcohol addiction for much of his adult life.
“Don’t let fear define you and get in your way,” said Tambor. “Don’t let your negative qualities hold you back. Don’t let it hold you back from being great. Be courageous and be an adventurer. Find out what there is that’s keeping you back. Then you can work to overcome that.”
Ultimately, Tambor said, the key to success today is being able to stand out. But to him, the only way to really separate yourself from the crowd is to take risks and embrace failure.
“You have to be prepared to be wrong 50% of the time,” he said. “Take risks and operate quickly. Don’t get stuck doing the same thing over and over again. Stop trying to please people and actually start doing things the way you think they’re right. Let risk be your guide. Failure is the gift that keeps on giving. Failure is a part of necessary change. We don’t live to be average. The last thing we want to be is just enough, mediocre, getting by.”