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Social Graces

November 19, 2012

Before becoming an entrepreneur I worked as the Assistant Alumni Director at Le Moyne College.  One of my duties involved coordinating and managing alumni receptions around the country. I typically accompanied the College President, but one event I escorted one of the college’s most popular past presidents, Father Reilley.

On the car ride to an alumni event in Binghamton, Father asked me a number of questions about my education, career and role as a mother. We discussed his belief that everyone’s social graces were learned by the time they are 7.  He felt if someone didn’t master politeness, respect and manners by that age, they never would. Coming from an upbringing where I was taught early to keep my elbows off the table, not chew gum in church, be respectful of elders and say thank you every time I should, helped me in early leadership roles and in my career. I agreed with Father Reilley and never forgot the statement from this wise and gentle priest; especially as I raised my two sons.

Today’s message is a simple one, it’s to remind you that as entrepreneurs we must remember our social graces – especially the grace of thanking our clients, employees and business associates for their involvement with us and our companies. Being grateful for our lives, in a world filled with so much hardship for so many people, is an easy choice. We mustn’t get caught up in the small and large frustrations of running a business that we forget to be kind and appreciative to those who work for and with us.

On Thanksgiving I hope you’ll take time to look inside yourself and be thankful for your intellect, your passion, your belief in your life’s purpose; look outside of yourself and recognize the people who have helped you along your journey; look above and recognize the importance of faith, grace and guidance leading you forward; and look below you at your healthy feet, legs and body that support you every day and help you walk down your destined path.

 
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