by Achim Nowak

This Labor Day, I Have Some Thoughts.

September 3, 2023

Labor Day.

Penultimate American holiday. Long week-end. Summer shifts toward fall.

There is a deeper meaning, of course. Truth is, I usually don’t give it all that much thought. This year feels a little different.

Every first Friday of the month, I hold a virtual drop-in for folks who have been involved in my Mastermind community. I call it First Fridays. Just an hour. I never know who will show up. Only Mastermind “graduates” are invited.

That’s what kicked off this Labor Day weekend for me. Friday, 2 pm.

The beauty of a First Fridays is that amazing peeps who were in one Mastermind hang out with other exceptional peeps who were not in their Mastermind.

And we mastermind around whatever wants to be discussed.

I thought to myself on Friday, I just love these folks. How blessed are we that we get to hang out with each other.

It’s the people, stupid. It always is.

This particular tribe has mastered a conversational form that allows for depth, for honesty, vulnerability, wisdom. We know this form. Know how to fill it. And we do.

How blessed am I.

To hang out with smart, accomplished, and conscious fellow humans. To have the courage to have Big Talk (a term coined by Karina Silverman as an antithesis to “small talk”).

How fortunate am I that I get to do this for a living. That’s how my Labor Day weekend began.

The Rewards of Mentorship

Friday night, Leandra Campbell and I went out for a meal at the marvelous Carmela’s in Hollywood/Florida where I live.

Leandra is a Licensed Social Worker in private practice. For 8 years, she was the Relationship Manager in my first firm. I hired Leandra when she was a young woman of 24. While helping run my firm, Leandra went back to school to get her MSW.

Our conversation at Carmela’s was many things. It most certainly was a trip down memory lane.

8 years is a long run.

I can be a mercurial boss. But my Relationship Managers all stay with me for a long time. Leandra and I reflect on Dan Oropesa who preceded her and Hugo Sanchez who works with me now. I am confident that each is a better person because we worked together. I know that I urge them to grow, continue to learn, return to school, pursue their passions.

I mentor well. And I encourage my peeps to leave for their next act when it’s time.

On Labor Day weekend, this feels immensely gratifying.

Yes, blessed.

It’s Not Just Business, It’s Life

An individual I coach just got married. Last week was Ben’s (not his real name) first week back at work.

One of the joys of being an Executive Coach for CEOs and C-Suite leaders is that I get to coach folks who are already very successful.

We have formal coaching goals for our work, and the goals are rarely about being “more successful.” They are, invariably, about being a more vulnerable, more authentic, more strategic, more caring leader. A more fully human leader which, in turn, allows others to be the same.

Because that’s when we tend to do our best work.

I sometimes take the fact that I get to do this sort of work for granted. A few months ago, when I checked in with Ben about how he was applying the skills we were working on, he said: I have been using them all weekend in my personal life.

How very cool is that.

My clients and I get to play in the personal excellence playground. We do this at work. It’s always about all of life.

Work is about people, stupid. It always is.

That is what I celebrate this Labor Day. With appreciation and immense gratitude.

Onward, for more.

(954) 921-3014
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram