On Customers:

The customer is always right. But, sometimes we have to educate them on what right is.

Know who your customer is. It isn't always the person who assumes the role!

Know your customer. What do they do? Why do they do it? How long have they done it? What are their needs? What are their wants? Knowing them helps you anticipate the future, exceed the present and savor the past.

Politics will get you a promotion, customers who respect and depend upon you will get you a job you enjoy.

If you want to know if someone is meeting the needs of their customers, see whom they get birthday and Christmas cards from.

On Employees:

Hire good people and pay them too much.

Acknowledge a job well done immediately. Delayed appreciation has the opposite effect desired.

When climbing to the top of the mountain, it is better to pick up those along the way than to run over them. The view from the top of green grasses and beautiful trees is more enjoyable when shared with those who worked with you getting there. Bulldozers leave a very ugly landscape.

When it is done right, give credit where credit is due. When it is done wrong accept responsibility and make it right.

Those working for you know more about your abilities, strengths and weaknesses than those you work for do. Ask those under you how you are doing.

Always! Always! Always! be training your replacement.

Protect those who report to you. Unreasonable expectations only work when the economy is down.

On Bosses and Supervisors:

If your boss cannot accept a justified no or constructive respectful criticism - find another boss.

The best way to make your boss look good is to make those working for you look good.

On Personal Character:

Money cannot buy the ability to look at yourself in the mirror each morning.

Knowledge does not equal experience or wisdom. Pursue experience and wisdom, knowledge is their by-product.

Criticism comes in three flavors and three responses:

100% true - you need to change.

Partially true - you need to change.

100% False - you need to change. You are doing something that caused you to be criticized.

Don't get in the way, change is inevitable. If you decide to stop changing, step to the side so others can move on.

Children need your time not your money. No one has ever said they wish they had spent more time at work.

If your job robs you of family time, QUIT. "Children are 20% of our population but 100% of our future." -author unknown

Have a mentor and be a mentor.

Favorite Quotes:

"Sometimes in life you have to act as you think best. You can't compromise, you can't give in...even if your critics are loud and numerous." George Herbert Walker Bush in a letter to his children December 31, 1990 just before the Persian Gulf War.

Quality is like buying oats! If you want nice, clean oats, you must pay a fair price; however if you can be satisfied with oats that have already been through the horse- that comes a little cheaper!!

"Ego is the anesthesia that deadens the pain of stupidity." Rick Rigsby, Texas A&M University Lecturer

Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs-even though checkered by failure than to take rank with these poor spirits who neither enjoy much or suffer much. Be wise, they live in the gray twilight that know not of victory, nor defeat. Nor true sorrow nor true love. --Theodore Roosevelt

“What doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger.” Ryan Brammer

“Life is a grindstone. Whether it polishes you up or grinds you down depends solely on what your are made of.” Dr. Al Metsker, founder of Kansas City Youth for Christ

“There is no point in doing well that which should not be done at all.” unknown

It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat." Theodore Rosevelt, "Citizenship in a Republic," Speech at the Sorbonne, Paris, April 23, 1910

A few words from Andy Rooney who has the gift of saying so much with so few words. While Andy says he has learned each of these, I confess I am still being taught.

I've learned....

...that the best classroom in the world is at the feet of an elderly person.

...that when you're in love, it shows.

...that just one person saying to me, "You've made my day!" makes my day.

...that having a child fall asleep in your arms is one of the most peaceful feelings in the world.

...that being kind is more important than being right.

...that you should never say no to a gift from a child.

...that I can always pray for someone when I don't have the strength to help him in some other way.

...that no matter how serious your life requires you to be, everyone needs a friend to act goofy with.

...that sometimes all a person needs is a hand to hold and a heart to understand.

...that simple walks with my father around the block on summer nights when I was a child did wonders for me as an adult.

...that life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer it gets to the end, the faster it goes.

...that we should be glad God doesn't give us everything we ask for.

...that money doesn't buy class.

...that it's those small daily happenings ...that make life so spectacular.

...that under everyone's hard shell is someone who wants to be appreciated and loved.

...that the Lord didn't do it all in one day. What makes me think I can?

...that to ignore the facts does not change the facts.

...that when you plan to get even with someone, you are only letting that person continue to hurt you.

...that love, not time, heals all wounds.

...that the easiest way for me to grow as a person is to surround myself with people smarter than I am.

...that everyone you meet deserves to be greeted with a smile.

...that there's nothing sweeter than sleeping with your babies and feeling their breath on your cheeks.

...that no one is perfect until you fall in love with them.

...that life is tough, but I'm tougher.

...that opportunities are never lost; someone will take the ones you miss.

...that when you harbor bitterness, happiness will dock elsewhere.

...that I wish I could have told my Mom ...that I love her one more time before she passed away.

...that one should keep his words both soft and tender, because tomorrow he may have to eat them.

...that a smile is an inexpensive way to improve your looks.

...that I can't choose how I feel, but I can choose what I do about it.

...that when your newly born grandchild holds your little finger in his little fist, ...that you're hooked for life.

...that everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but all the happiness and growth occurs while you're climbing it.

...that it is best to give advice in only two circumstances; when it is requested and when it is a life-threatening situation.

...that the less time I have to work with, the more thingsI get done.

Will Rogers, who died in a plane crash with Wylie Post in 1935, was probably the greatest political sage this country has ever known. Enjoy the following:

1. Never slap a man who's chewing tobacco.

2. Never kick a cow chip on a hot day.

3. There are 2 theories to arguing with a woman...neither works.

4. Never miss a good chance to shut up.

5. Always drink upstream from the herd.

6. If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.

7. The quickest way to double your money is to fold it and put it back in your pocket.

8. There are three kinds of men: The ones that learn by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence and find out for themselves.

9. Good judgment comes from experience, and a lot of that comes from bad judgment.

10. If you're riding' ahead of the herd, take a look back every now and then to make sure it's still there.

11. Lettin' the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier'n puttin' it back.

12. After eating an entire bull, a mountain lion felt so good he started roaring. He kept it up until a hunter came along and shot him. The moral: When you're full of bull, keep your mouth shut.