“If you’ve got a business-you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.”
President Obama spoke those words this week on the campaign trail in Virginia. After I read it I listened to it in context. And that is what the president said. I was amazed.
I do not believe Sam Walton believes someone else built Wal-Mart. I do not believe Truett Cathy believes someone else made Chick-Fil-A happen. And I know Delton and Jean Traylor did not have someone else building the Pisgah IGA for them.
In 1961 my parents moved from their Detroit home to Alabama to open a small grocery store. All of their worldly goods were poured into that venture. They were partners with a family member. They bought out his interest in a few months. Dad learned to be a butcher. Mom kept the books and ran the register. They hired others in the small business. But they did most of the work.
They opened early and stayed late six days a week. No one else did the work for them. Neither the state of Alabama nor the federal government built the IGA. Those two hard working, taxpaying, God fearing Americans made a living building a small business that rewarded them handsomely.
To tell them someone else made it happen is insulting.
Stephen Covey died this week. He wrote the best seller The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. They are:
1. Be proactive
2. Begin with the end in mind
3. Put first things first
4. Think win-win
5. Seek to understand then to be understood
7. Sharpen the saw- that is undergo frequent self renewal
My folks lived these principles for years and never read the book.
And my parents would add #8-Make the kid work in the store, it is good for him!!