We recently walked the streets of Athens. The city is an amazing contradiction. Half of Greece resides in Athens now and they are not one. They beg you to patronize their establishments and drive you out in the process. The citizens seem to be oblivious to their golden era and all the tourists want to see the Acropolis, Parthenon, and hear stories of the Greek God’s without understanding why it matters to them. I will not be back to Athens but will tour Greece again. I want to meet the Spartan, Theban, and the Cretan. I want to go back to Santorini and hang with our friend, George, who knows his opus is not flying high but laying low with his TC Villa guests. You see, friend, we cannot live well by living in our past. The golden age of Greece, America, or any other community is not found by living in your past. The good old days are not where you hang and hang well. Today is all you’ve got. If you want to live well, stop living in the past. Learn from it. Live in the present and build a vision for the future, and honor the past.
Honor the past. Celebrate the present. Build a vision for the future.
These are the big three values of vibrant communities. Performance cultures honor their past. They honor those that paved the way but they do not live in 500 BC or even in 1977. Honor the past, don’t live in it. Vibrant communities celebrate the present. They celebrate small wins and love getting tired together doing what matters. And, they look forward and get excited. They don’t beg you or I to patronize them. They give us great service, world class products, and one of a kind kinda experiences. We flock toward them. They cannot serve us all so they pick a price point that insures they serve those who value what they do. They live in the present and make us want to be with them not because they’re begging but because they’re better. Build better, leader, wherever you belong. Build better.
We’re celebrating son Jordan’s 35th tonight. We’ll patronize a place that doesn’t need us to be there. It will be freakin’ magic in the making. We’ll be back in Amalfi and Santorini; Athens not so much. I mean the ruins are great but we’ve been there, done that. Live and learn, friends. Your business is either heading toward being the best or begging. You will not become the best if you keep fighting within. This is why we believe one, distinct and deeply connected is the one you want. Honor the past, don’t live in it. Celebrate the present. Build a vision for the future and go freakin’ get it. You don’t get the team you want, you get the team you deserve. Want a better team? Become a better leader. Stop begging. Build better. Good.
Live hard. Love harder (Thanks, Teeks)…