November 25, 2009

101 Reasons Why I Am Here - Part II

(Read Post I of III first)

Welcome back. These Thanksgiving edition posts are a way for me to recognize and thank those people who have played a major role in my life. In the first post I recognized those people from my family and school years who have had a huge impact on my success. In this post, we'll focus on the people who have affected me in the work force.

Welcome to the Real World...Now Get a Job!

39) Bill Knapp's - No, this isn't a real person, but it was my first actual employment. As a bus boy, I started learning the impact every person has in a service industry - from the greeter to the waitresses, the cooks to the dishwashers, the bus boys to the cashiers. Everyone contributes to the customer experience.

40) Stan Cooke - Director of Golf at World Woods Golf Club - Welcomed me into the golf business and gave me an opportunity to learn the joys of working with the public.

41) Dominic Antenucci - Dom was the head pro of a private club outside of Cleveland. On a visit to Central Florida for the PGA Merchandise Show, we luckily connected. After a round of golf and a great dinner, I was on my way to Northern Ohio to work for Avon Oaks Country Club. Dom is the best boss I have ever had when it comes to dealing with people. His style, class and demeanor taught me more about handling personal relationships than any class or book ever could. He was a master at handling an irate customer or member. He would simply listen, pause and then, in a hushed, understanding tone say "I'm sorry that happened to you. What can I do to make it right?" A lesson and a leader I will never forget.

Time to Build a Career in Real Estate because "Nobody Knows Homes Like a Carpenter"

42)Bonnie Nyikes - I loved my career as a beer salesman for a Miller and Coors distributor but I didn't really get a chance to be a true "salesman." I was more of an order-taker. Ronda and I had really enjoyed the process of buying our first home so I reached out to Bonnie, who was our Realtor. I asked her if she thought I could be successful in real estate. The rest, as they say, is history. Thanks for being honest with me and helping me get started on my way.

43) Bob Kidwell - My first manager (and also my parent's Realtor way back in 1970 when they bought their home in Upper Arlington that my brothers and I grew up in). The "Captain" as he is better known, is a true character and a great mentor.

44) Pat Grabill, (45) Mike Huntley, (46) Joe King, (47) Jerry White, (48)Glen Wilson & (49) Joe Reis - These guys have all been, in some form or fashion, my bosses these last 13 years in real estate. Each of them has helped to guide me and teach me how to succeed in the real estate arena. While each of them has their own style of leadership, they all have been able to share ideas, experiences and wisdom. They also have provided continuous support and appreciation for my contributions and efforts.

50) Alice DeHoff - My real estate trainer when I first began my career. Hard to imagine back then that I would now hold that same responsibility with our company.

51) Nancy Trout - Another mentor of mine who helped build the role I now hold. Nancy teaches with passion and a raw emotion that is evident to all who took a class with her. I am thrilled that she is back in a management position with a broker in North Carolina. I hope she's enjoying her new role and the proximity to her grandchildren.

52) Leslie Zimmerman, 53) Kathy Shiflet, 54) Jessica Hogg, 55) Fred Kierner, 56) Gloria Cannon, (57) Barbie Hoyt, (58) Patrick Guanciale, (59) Andrew Guanciale & (60) Gretchen McKay - A tremendous group of Realtors and friends. We sure have shared some good times these last few years, huh? I am so proud of all of you and always happy to help you achieve the levels of success you deserve

61) Molly McGovern Rawdon - My first assistant who helped me reach new levels of success while helping me learn to be the "boss man."

62) Mary Brummel - One of the best executive assistants ever. Mary worked tirelessly to make #44-#49 above look good and she did it with a smile on her face. She had a way to make you feel like everything she did was extra special...just for you.

63) Michelle Smurthwaite, (64) Marilyn Stace & (65) Kathi Doppelt - The best staff an office manager could have. Supportive, loyal and fun. They all aimed to take care of the customer first. Thanks for making me look good the way Mary Brummel made her bosses look good.

66) Larry Metzger - The fearless Executive Officer of the Columbus Board of Realtors and one of the best representatives of our industry, Larry is best buddies with #43) Bob Kidwell. As an active volunteer with the CBR for most of my first 10 years as a Realtor, I was able to serve in a Board of Directors role and work closely with Larry. If you want to learn how to be a great ambassador for a group, cause or effort, spend five minutes with Larry Metzger.

67) Jane Nipps, (68) Jim Wimmers, (69) Rick Walker, (70)Randy Wax & (71) Dori Gehling - Some of my "guiding lights" since I have been in my leadership role with my company. Along with many other unnamed managers and department leaders, these people have served as mentors, sounding boards, shoulders of support and much, much more. They are each brilliant and skilled in what they do and are always willing to share to make the whole better than the sum of it's parts. I am proud to be on your team.

72) Jim Stevenson - To have had a chance to work with a brilliant mind like Jim's must have been similar to caddying for Ben Hogan or being Muhammad Ali's sparring partner. You know you're around a rare talent and you enjoy every second of it. Onward!

73) Sarah Poston & (74) Susan Trefilek - These two ladies are the Training Coordinators for the two companies I work for. That means they do all the things it takes to make me look good. Sarah covers the Columbus company and Susan handles the Cincinnati company. As the engineer, I get to hang my head out and wave to the children and people watching the big engine roll by. These ladies are the heart and soul of my career - continually putting the coal in the engines to keep me moving forward and always making sure I am on the right track. Thanks ladies for helping me "become better!"

Obviously with 20+ years in the work force, there are many who deserve thanks and recognition. I sincerely have enjoyed every opportunity I have been given in my life and know that each moment has been a learning opportunity for the enxt.

In the third and final post, I'll recognize and appreciate some of the other people who have played a major role in helping me get to where I am today.