I haven’t had a meaningfully important 7:00 a.m. meeting in a long, long time…maybe since K-State landscape architecture construction lecture classes with DJ. Oh the agony of those! You dared not doze off in his class either, or else you got a chalked-up eraser pitched at your chest. Wait a minute…I wasn’t going there.
Myself and 4 others in our company got an invitation from Mark (our CEO) to attend a 2 1/2 hour networking conference at a mid-cities country club this morning. The Outlook calendar said be there at 7:00 a.m.
Now I do 7:00 a.m. rather well. I have meetings everyday at that time – some are business related, some are business development coffees/breakfasts, some are with a sunrise and chirping birds. For the most part, those meeting are relaxed and pretty much on my terms.
Who else has had that gut-sock feeling – you’re awake, the day has started, but your stride has yet to hit any kind of consistent pace. Then suddenly you remember – “I have an appointment!”. You have 1 hour to get there, the commute is 45 minutes, and you’re standing in the middle of the kitchen in your undershorts. You know that almost-nauseous feeling:
The kind that makes you curse the unset alarm.
The kind that makes you say aloud and with conviction, a TMI body function.
The kind that makes you sniff your armpits and decide “not bad” and the morning shower gets skipped.
The kind that makes you remember your travel cup mug of coffee, but forget the lid, only to spill half the dag-gum cup getting into the truck.
The kind that makes you turn off the car radio in hopes the quietness and absence of the radio guy’s voice telling you what time it is, will not make you late.
The kind that makes you text and drive some cockamamy excuse to everyone but the boss man.
The kind that makes you hit every dreadfully-long red light, and you repeatedly thump the steering wheel, repeating in an ever-increasing angry tone: “come on, come on”. (BTW, I now realize when you’re running late, there is no such thing as a yellow light).
The kind of feeling that makes you wonder why kids along your route have to start classes so frickin’ early in the morning.
The kind that makes you unbuckle your seatbelt while driving into the parking lot, thinking your multitasking is going to save your valuable seconds in your late arrival.
The kind that makes you curse the unset alarm…oh wait, I already said that. Hey! Maybe it was because of a power outage that the alarm did not go off…hey yeah, that’s it.
I made it to my meeting 10 minutes after 7:00. Other folks were arriving at the same time as me. None of them had a stressful sense of urgency on their face, nor about their mannerisms. This gave me hope that I would not be singled out by the presenter as I walked into the room.
I hustled up to the table and checked in with the registration ladies. They had only pleasant smiles of welcome for me. I’m thinking, “I’m good!” (in an “OK” sense of “good”).
So I slap on the name sticker, smile back at the ladies, and then hear this “Well Good Morning!” behind me. Suddenly that feeling started to churn deep within…you know, the kind that makes you slightly buckle at the waist.
Deep breath, I bravely turned to face up to wrath of my tardiness. It was the conference presenter, Tony Jeary, for crying out loud! He welcomed me to the meeting and thanked me for taking time from my day to be here with him. I’m thinking, “this guy is good!” (in a “good” sense of “good”).
The conference was to start at 7:45! I was not late at all. In fact, I beat Mark to the meeting. Therefore, all was well!
Tony Jeary is truly a dynamic personality. He’s touted as a CEO coach and he definitely is one. He’s the kind of man that makes early morning rot-gut feelings go away with a wave, “good morning”, and a handshake that oozes confidence. What he shared with 50 people (besides one of his 38 books) was a song everyone in the room could harmonize with – Vision, Focus, and Execution. But y’all, that’s another post coming once I finish reading the “To Tim” autographed book I took home (well maybe I won’t wait that long – I have a couple pages of notes).