Women Who Mean Business

Have you ever been nominated for an award? Won one? How do you feel when you are the center of attention? If you are at all like me, you probably feel a bit sheepish. Out of sorts. Uncomfortable.

Don’t get me wrong. It’s an honor to be acknowledged for past accomplishments. It feels good to know that you have received a certain level of success. Still, awards and award programs can be a bit much for people who are natural introverts. Even if you like the attention, you can still end up feeling overwhelmed by all those accolades and all that recognition.

If truth be told, I wasn’t particularly looking forward to being honored at the recent “Women Who Mean Business” event. I felt a bit self-conscious by the whole thing, but I got over my own discomfort and decided to embrace it and to focus on all the people who have supported me and encouraged me over the years. I decided to be grateful. And, grateful I am. Not so much for the award, but for all the people who made it possible, starting with Rose Medina who nominated me. Thank you, Rose!

The philosopher, Alfred North Whitehead said, No one who achieves success does so without acknowledging the help of others. The wise and confident acknowledge this help with gratitude.” I want to acknowledge all the helpers in my life and I do so with gratitude.

There are way too many people to name, but thank you to every one who encouraged me to lead at both the state and local levels, to serve on the  Professional Standards Committee and the Education Committee, and to teach ethics. To those who set a high bar and who mentored me, helped me, coached me, taught me, and corrected me, a big mahalo!  You know who you are and your modeling and example of excellence have been, and continue to be, invaluable.

We learn so much by example and the people we know who live integrous lives become our standard and are our inspiration. I am continually grateful for the example of those around me who live their lives with honesty and integrity. Your ethical standards and your willingness to do the right thing regardless of the circumstances inspire me and help me to do the same. Thank you.

Albert Einstein said, Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.” I agree. There are many wonderful women (and men) who mean business. Women and men who have qualities like kindness, empathy, and concern for the greater good. When business men and women manage to hold on to their humanity and their humility, while serving their clients and communities, we are all better off. And, we become better people as a result.

We all enjoy accolades from time to time and recognition can certainly be rewarding. I truly appreciate those who have celebrated me and cheered me on, but shouldn’t the goal in life be to live well and to live rightly whether or not anybody praises you for it? I think so. And, I believe the amazing women I shared the stage with do, too! Perhaps that is why they are all there to begin with — because they live lives in service to others.

So, to all the amazing women who empower others to develop and thrive, who lead with passion, wisdom, vision and purpose, and who make our companies and communities better, I salute you! Thank you for leading by example and for making our world a better place. I.Am.Grateful.

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