The bulk of what I’ve learned that means the most has come from my parents.
This page is dedicated to my dad.
The older I get, the more my folks mean to me but the more I also try to emulate and honor them.
My dad is one of the hardest working people I know.
He’s one of the last of a dying breed. John Wayne stuff. Put your head down and do it stuff.
He taught me this stuff:
- Work as hard as it takes for as long as it takes to get the job done
- Work smart not hard
- Become your best. Settle for nothing less
- Care to give your best on every job or don’t even bother starting
- Be patient
- Be good to others with no expectation of reward. It all comes back to you anyhow
- Give. Willingly. Frequently
- Stand by your word, no matter how much that may sometimes hurt
- Relax. Getting mad or anxious adds two problems to a list that used to be only one item deep
- Negotiate, don’t argue
- Maneuver, don’t resist
- Do favors
- You gotta give before you get
- Compromise when necessary so that everyone wins as much as possible in the deal
- Go the extra mile in every situation
- Be organized and neat
- Take care of your tools
- Take care of your network
- Take care of your team
- Be willing to take charge when no one else will or can
- Stand up for your values, regardless of the size of the opposition
- Don’t throw out the old or broken part until the new one’s been installed
- Keep an eye out for opportunities
- Never say no to a gift
- Pay your bills on time
- Be honest
- NEVER cross a picket line! (Know when to say when)
- NEVER spend your money before it’s in your hands
- Stay flexible and be reasonable
OK. Some of this may seem contradictory so that last item trumps all. This is a big list but it really boils down to one thing:
Honor yourself and others throughout all your actions
Be a good guy. Someone people can count on, depend upon, and trust.
In the Marines, we took that stuff very seriously. My guys had a chance to meet my dad once when we were all still in. To be blunt, he impressed the living shit out of all of them.
I must stress that this was a hard thing to do. We did not impress easily as a group. EVERYBODY had to prove their worth to us! (You truly have no idea.) My dad did it without even trying.
And he was (and still is) just a damned good guy.
I do my best to be the same way. I am not the same as him. My life has been some kind of wildly different than his in almost every way. But his teachings are what guided me through it all and still do.
My dad gave and still gives to me and my family on a level that makes me proud to be his son.
I want people to look at me the way everyone who knows my dad looks at him
And that is why I feel you can allow me to help you. I don’t know how to give any less of myself than what you’ve just read. It would be a dishonoring of what my dad expects of me.