Lessons Learned in Good Company


November 21, 2009. A brisk Saturday evening much like any other cool Chicago night. Little did I know – this seemingly harmless evening would result in something much greater, much more terrifyingly awesome, than any of us would have ever expected.

In short, my Saturday night was probably definitely better than yours.

  • Maybe it was the delicious cupcakes.
  • Or the Mongolian feast
  • Or the Yellow-skintight-turtleneck-wearing Fabio
  • Or putting my car seat back and pretending to be seven feet tall
  • Or the ice cream social
  • Or “Slap Jack”
  • Or MASHING (the teenage girl slumber party MASH)
  • Or Graphic tee, pleated khaki, one-sided-braid-sporting 50 year olds
  • Or winding up at one of the most random underground hair salon swinger parties ever

Whatever it was. There was something magical about Saturday, November 21st. On that fateful night, through all of the terrifyingly random shenanigans, I walked away with a valuable lesson:

No matter how random, scary, or ridiculous a situation may get, when you surround yourself with the right people – when you travel in good company – everything seems to work itself out. Anything is possible.

Think about Zappos. A little over 10 years ago a group of friends decided to start a business. A few friends set out to make money together, and have fun doing it. Through the years, they maintained that community spirit and committed themselves to building relationships. Back in July, Zappos sold to Amazon for over $850 million. They must have gotten something right.

They realized the power of the collective spirit. They took things in stride and made the best of every situation. They understood that having fun and loving what you do is one of, if not the most important ingredient to success.

One ridiculous night out in #DTA (downtown Aurora) taught me a lot about how I look at both personal and professional relationships. With most – I would have considered Saturday night to be a complete disaster – but with the right people, with some great friends – it was a night I’ll truly never forget.

Are you surrounding yourself with the right people?

P.S. MASH Results: I’m marrying Mari in Africa, honeymooning in Europe, and living in Naperville with our 7 kids and pet turtle. Not to mention, I drive a Corvette. Sweet.