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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Amazing Weekend

So this weekend upcoming has got to rank right up there with the best. For me, to be able to spend it with two people that literally changed my life. I am spending the weekend with my first mentor, or maybe it's a tie for first, but I digress........Anyhoo I am jetting off to honor another mentor who is being inducted into the hall of leaders. Many moons ago in a far off land, Cleveland to be exact, I was minding my own business at a Fashion Focus in Cleveland Ohio trying to get my CEU's and a plan. I noticed one of my nail gurus, Vicki Peters, was teaching a class on goal setting. Perfect! I soaked up all the information I could mesmorized by this living legend whose articles I read like a religion. It totally dusted off the squirrels in my brain and got me thinking, I definitely need to talk to this lady. I waited after the class through the well wishers, photos and such for my moment to ask my question. "I have been in this industry for so many years, done so many things, but am unsure what's next for me." I lamented. She looked me square in the face, not knowing me from Eve and said point blank, "YOU need to be an educator, walk with me." On the way down to the show floor, she did share with me that although her class was goal setting she really had not a clue what she was doing tomorrow. She was so down to earth and accessable I could not believe my good fortune. Surely, I must have caught her on a good day. She can't possibly be this generous all the time, with a complete stranger no less. Little did I know at that time, generosity was her middle name. Vicki walked me right down to the show floor and introduced me to several regional managers from top manufacturers and said I would be sending a resume. Well, talk about a kick in the butt!! I thanked her for the inspiration and the introductions and promised to follow up. And follow up I did. By the fall show I was working as a manufacturers educator and was looking forward to seeing Vicki to share my story. I bought her a lighthouse candle holder and gave her a note, thanking her for her belief in me. That was truly the beginning of my new path. To grow enough to help others. Vicki and I will be attending a very special event this weekend of another mentor of mine, Geno Stampora, who is being inducted to the NAHA Hall of Leaders. It was about the same time back in the far off land of Cleveland that I met Geno. I was hooked from the start. I could learn a lot from this guy, I remember thinking. We saw each other each show, year after year and I watched him grow at an amazing rate. I needed to know what he was reading and who he was studying. Every show we managed to find a few minutes to connect and be there for each other. How proud I am to be in the company of such giving and talented individuals. How fitting just this morning I read about Steve Farbers book "Greater Than Yourself" In it he states “The greatest leaders that I’ve seen, the best extreme leaders that I’ve met over the years are the ones that never seek credit for their own greatness, but instead, invest themselves in such a way as to make other people around them greater than they are. So instead of shining the light on themselves, they lift other people up and build a track record of creating superstar after superstar.” This is what true leaders do. I had the opportunity to speak to Geno on the eve of this great honor and he is so appreciative. To have worked so hard and finally looked up to take a pause to see that yes, we were paying attention. I shared a quote from June Carder Cash that in her life she was "Just trying to matter". I assured him, yes, you matter and we are all better for it.

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