One confused friend once asked over and over why have a blog. Who is going to read it? Another dear friend said it like talking to me, isn’t it?. One colleague said it is like looking into Rich’s mind and it is *scary!?*.
On this day after Thanksgiving Day, I think the answer is. Who cares who reads it, I have to express it. Ironically a random post is far truer to my basic nature than an off hand “Good Day”. And yes every mind is complicated and contradictory. Both filled with good, bad and the dark. It is only a question I whether you known it.
Everyone has a different kind of Thanksgiving I’m sure. Some spent it in good cheer. Others hiding under a bed in Mumbai. Others wondering how they would make the mortgage payment this month.
But I had a chance to visit three different families yesterday. Each different and unique. I was honored that each family welcomed me. And overwhelmed by the love in each house. Surely not every home was perfect but each had and expressed love in it’s own way. Whether it was watching YouTube videos together of Barack parodies. Or the sweet smells of onions and wine on their way to a great meal. Or the excitement of midnight shopping on Black Friday.
Finally I’ve had a long running argument about whether business colleagues can be true friends. One dear friend thinks it is impossible. There is a line that cannot be crossed. But I’ve found quite the opposite. It is tricky and dangerous. But knowing someone has stood the true test of fire and stayed true to him or herself and the team is pretty fundamental to my definition of true friend.
They say in the military that you can never tell how people really will react under fire. In business I agree with that. Someone who seems honorable and a good person can crack at the first stress. Whereas the biggest blow hard person can actually be the most amazing under fire. You just can never tell.
While this is complicated in a traditional corporation, in a business partnership of equals, things are even more complicated. There is no hierarchy. There is no boss. So then each person has to live up to vague standards of honor and “doing the right thing.” Certainly, it is very hard to make these things work. Trying to make it work with 4 people is really tough. I don’t know how people make it work with 100 people.
Reflecting on Thanksgiving, I’m really lucky that there are so many true partners in my life. The last eight years have been difficult, not to mention the last two, not to mention the last two months. Many business partnerships and many friendships are going to crack I think over the next year as the stresses grow both personally and professionally. But I know that the ones I’ve formed and the families I’ve seen won’t.
And on this day free Thanksgiving I can say knowing that there are so many good families and good partners in the world is truly a blessing.