Preparation

There is an order to things.

There is an order to things. Make sure you are prepared.

I heard this quote the other day. Sorry, I can’t give any credit to its author.

It’s hard to prepare for something when you’re not ready for it.

Wait . . . isn’t that why we prepare?

Whether it is for an exam in school or a job interview, being prepared for the unexpected is at the very core of being prepared. You just know that curve ball is coming at you. That’s the teacher’s/interviewer’s mode of operation. It doesn’t mean you’ll pass/land the job, but you can minimize failure by being prepared.

I was a boy scout and our motto is “Be Prepared.” Scouting as an organization was founded by Robert Baden-Powell in the early 20th century. Upon his retirement from active scouting, B-P had this to say:

“Try and leave this world a little better than you found it and when your turn comes to die, you can die happy in feeling that at any rate you have not wasted your time but have done your best. ‘Be Prepared’ in this way, to live happy and to die happy — stick to your Scout Promise always — even after you have ceased to be a boy — and God help you to do it.”

What are you doing to be prepared? The scout motto of “Be Prepared” means that you are always in a state of readiness in mind and body to do your duty.

So I guess this post is about knowing your duty. Because if you know your duty, then you know what you have to do in order to be prepared.

Posted in Duty, Preparedness | Leave a comment

New life out of tragedy

The path is well worn and defined. But it's not too late to make a new one.

The path is well-worn and defined. But it’s not too late to make a new one.

A customer came in last night looking for a particular item. It was going to be a special order item and the customer was willing to wait. No problem she said.

It was the way she said it that caught my attention. For some unknown reason, I immediately thought to myself, “I bet this woman is a real estate agent.” We talked about the item for a moment and then I got the courage to ask her if she was an agent. Maybe it was the way she presented herself or the way she was dressed. I just had a feeling.

And I was right. Without asking, she proceeded to tell her story of how she became an agent. After 30+ years as a flight attendant with a major airline, the events of 9/11 are an integral part of where she is today. Sitting in a training class, a supervisor addressed the employees about the need to make big personnel cuts in the wake of the terrible events from that day. Before she had time to talk herself out of a profession she truly loved, she took the early retirement deal and left to join her husband in the real estate world. End of story.

But it wasn’t the story that itself that piqued my interest. It was the way she spoke of her former employer. She wasn’t bitter about being pushed out. She was grateful for the 30+ years in a job she loved. She held no ill will for the CEO that announced the cuts. She spoke of him fondly as if he were a childhood friend. She wasn’t angry at the tragedy that changed the lives of so many around the world. She was thankful for the new life she now leads.

I told her she needs to write a book about her experience. It’s the kind of inspiration that could be a valuable lesson to a generation of 50-somethings that have to start a new career due to forces out of their control.

She’s already working on it. :)

Posted in Career, Change, Chaos | 2 Comments

Appraisals

Clean. Serene. Pristine. How much is it worth?

Clean. Serene. Pristine. How much is it worth?

A common term in the real estate business. Banking too.

You don’t work in either of these industries? No problem.

How often do you get an appraisal on your business? On yourself?

A good friend asked me a beautiful question the other day about my writing.

Are you writing to be heard by an audience? Or are you writing for your conscience to hear?

So I’ve been pondering this question for a while. And my answer is this.

Yes!

It’s a combination of both. Maybe I thought I had an audience in the beginning who would want to hear what I had to write. I do believe there are things that people need to hear. But who am I to force it on them? So now I guess I’m writing so my conscience has an outlet in order to be heard.

But is that healthy? As in healthy for me and my audience. Some things are better left unsaid.

But this blog wouldn’t be anything without you, the reader. So thank you for taking a minute or two out of your day and stopping to read something I hope will make you think, encourage you or motivate you to take action. Because doing so, you’ve helped me with my appraisal.

Posted in Appraisal, Business Growth | 6 Comments

Future leaders

Local business owners and leaders making connections.

Local business owners and leaders making connections.

Is a leader born knowing how to lead? A simple question but a complicated answer.

While you ponder that, a group from a local business association of which I’m a part, decided to work with local elementary schools through a reading program. We go in once every few months and are assigned a class in the K-2 range and read them a book.

A question I’m asking myself . . . can we make a difference with just a periodic influence? Maybe we should increase our presence to once a month. What about once a week? Every day perhaps?

It’s not about another accomplishment on my LinkedIn profile. It’s not screaming “look at me, look at me” . . .

What are you doing to build the next generation of leaders? Don’t let your (my) obsession with electronic gadgetry (put the phone down) get in the way of personal connections.

Posted in Education, Leadership, Training | Leave a comment

Get out

The stage is ready.

The stage is ready.

It’s not about leaving your comfort zone. Although if you are uncomfortable doing this, get comfortable in your uncomfortableness.

Getting out of the confines of your business are important to reach a new audience and expand your territory. And expand yourself.

Guess it’s time to buy bigger pants.

Posted in Business Growth, Growth, Opportunity | 4 Comments