I recently wrote on this blog about mission statements. The basic premise was that the overly wordy, pompous mission statement hanging in the lobby was little used, never remembered or quoted, and not inspiring.
Last night on the way home from work I saw a bunch of tents in the parking lot of the brand new Chick-Fil-A restaurant near my home (the company had actually been on that same corner for years but they tore down the old building and built a new one). The grand opening is today.
Curious, I went home, picked up my wife and son, and we returned to see what was going on. Turns out that the first 100 people in line at the opening of a new store get free Chick-Fil-A for a year, but the magic was happening inside, not in the parking lot.
Less that a minute into the new restaurant I (literally) bumped into Dan Cathy coming out of the kid’s play area. Mr. Cathy is the President and COO, and son of the founder, of Chick-Fil-A. He stuck his hand out, and said, “Welcome, I’m Dan.” After a few brain cycles I said, “Oh, THAT Dan?!”, and introduced him to my family.
It was well after 10pm when Mr. Cathy served my wife and son free ice cream (he has no idea that I am on local TV, by the way), then stood on a chair for a least 30 minutes and shared some inspirational words with the gathered crowd. This picture is the President and COO playing Happy Birthday to anyone born in August on his trumpet.
His words were about faith, and respect, and serving others, and doing your best to make people feel good. Mr. Cathy slept in his own tent on the pavement right outside the drive through window last night, it is the one hundred thirty-first time he has done so. (Low in the upper 70s and dew point in the 60s in Texas last night)
If you go back and read my previous post you’ll understand why my new mission statement is, “Play the Trumpet”. I hope you find one too!