More Cowbell

APR 25, 2013

“I put my pants on just like the rest of you, one leg at a time.  Except once my pants are on, I make gold records.” Bruce Dickenson aka The Bruce Dickenson (aka Christopher Walken on SNL skit “Gotta Have More Cowbell”)  Watch the clip below.

I just got back from doing a town hall meeting with my exec team.  We did the meetings in both Denver and Phoenix.  There was talk about how important it was for management to be present in the satellite offices and how it helps for inspiration, culture and overall direction.  We then left the meetings and went to dinner as a group.  I had one of the people come up to me and say that is was exciting to have a Trace3 celebrity in town and we had a laugh.  I heard this type of theme from so many I was lucky enough to spend time with.  I have seen these type of comments at Trace3 and with other company’s management teams.  Management visits and people hope to make a good impression or get those precious few seconds to talk strategy or futures…or to gripe about problems.

Fast forward a bit and I get home to a wife that has developed a cold and 3 boys running to give me hugs.  My wife is holding my baby girl who is seven months old.  I have two huge concerns with the baby (Brinley).  The first is she will forget who I am if I leave for more than a day or two.  The second is that she will do a “first _____” while I am gone.  Mason, my first son, took his first step while I was on a trip…  Lucky for me, Brinley remembered me.  She gave me a huge smile, then immediately had a blow out diaper emergency that traveled halfway up her back.   I grab her and go upstairs while my wife works on dinner.  Changing her proves to be a squirmy challenge and a bit of a disaster.  After finishing I grab Brinley and her soiled clothes to head to the laundry room.  I unsuccessfully attempt to spray all the clothes down in hopes of not having to throw them away.  Brin is naked and still squirming.  I am spraying down clothes and think I bet she pees on me…   Exactly at that moment she throws/spits up all over my shoulder and arm.  I stop everything and look at her.  She gives me a big smile.  I cannot help but start to laugh.  I have poop and puke all over me, but I am home and I am happy.

Not exactly the image of a “celebrity.”  I have a job as a CEO and I do it to the best of my ability.  I study the art of it.  I read to get better.  I try not to fail at the same thing twice.  I try and surround myself with peers and advisors that also “Strive for Greatness.”  I love my job, but honestly, I consider myself to be a pretty normal guy rather than a huge success in life.  If I had my way, that is also how I would want people to treat me.  I think most managers/bosses feel that way.  There needs to be respect, but awe or fear is a waste of everyone’s time.  I have always thought being yourself is what makes people stand out when “celebrities” are in town.  Being yourself might even be inspiring enough to have a real conversation.

At the town hall meetings I was told my job was to say something inspiring…

Have you ever tried to do that?  What if I told you that tomorrow you need to go into work and do something that inspired everyone around you to be better or to strive harder?  What would you do?  What would the “culture” in the office be like if 10 people in the office made the decision to do that?

I don’t think celebrities are very special or deserve too much praise.  I think they are just normal people that deal with poop, puke, and all the other realities of life; but after they do it, they make a daily choice to go out and make gold records.

That said, Bruce Dickenson is my hero.

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