What Impression Do You Make?

Over the weekend, I read a very moving eulogy on BusinessWorks…, a blog written by Hal Alpiar. The tribute is to a gentleman named Butch Taras.

While no picture was provided, I felt as though I could “see” Butch. Here’s a snippet of the description provided:

“…Butch was a leader through and through because he considered everyone a teammate…[He] was a truly gifted athlete who could do almost everything better than almost everybody. He was arguably the finest all-around performer in our league…[but] he never spoke of his abilities. Friendliness, humility, and courage are the traits I most admired and associated with the Butch Taras I knew. He was a “gentleman” in every sense of the word, on the field and off.”

Butch reminded me of a few people who I feel lucky to have known, even if only for a short time in my life.

Beautiful FlowersOne such person was a man I’ll call “Bob.” The circumstances that led me to get to know Bob were not ideal — I worked for a national health organization, with our local office providing support to individuals and their family members. Bob was involved with our organization because his wife had the disease we were dedicated to eliminating. Bob was very active with the organization, not only in the participation of support groups and other programming that helped families who were living with the effects of the disease, but in his involvement with our fundraisers and other efforts that could help us continue in our mission.

The thing I remember most about Bob is that he always came in to the office with a smile and a handshake for me. He always made me feel like he was so happy to see me, and he treated me with a great deal of respect. It didn’t matter that I was just part of the office staff and still in the first few years of my career. Bob was simply a sweet, sweet man.

It wasn’t until some time later that I overheard someone talking about what Bob used to do before he retired. I found out that he had been a part of the top management of a Fortune 100 company.

That amazed me! Here was this man, someone who was very accomplished, going along in his everyday existence just as humbly as could be. Always a smile and a kind word for everyone, literally everyone. Age, position, place in life — none of it mattered to Bob. You were a person, so you were worthy enough to interact with. He was probably one of the kindest, most down-to-earth person I have ever met.

Even though it has been many years since I worked for that organization, I never forgot Bob and the impression he made on me. I’ve always tried to live up to the role model he set forth. I know I have failed miserably at some many points in my life, but I’m sure Bob would be the first one to encourage me to get up, make it right with the person I may have wronged, and try again.

Think about how you go about your life, in both your professional and personal interactions. What kind of impression do you make?

Image courtesy of InAweofGod’sCreation

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