Posted February 1st, 2018
February can be cold and rainy. It still gets dark early. It is the last full month of winter. It can be sort of drab!
OR!!!!!! February can be FABULOUS!!!
It is the shortest month of the year, so we better enjoy it while it is here because it will be gone soon. There are a lot of cool things about February.
One cool thing is that it is Black History Month – “the opportunity to honor the accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history”. What a cool opportunity!
There is also a really unique day of observance in February. The date is February17 and it is called “Random Acts of Kindness Day”. It is a day to “celebrate kindness and the whole pay it forward mentality’. WOW!!! That sounds right up our alley at Chick-fil-A. I want to participate in this day, and practice random acts of kindness on February 17.
In fact, I want to consider the entire month of February a “random act of kindness month”. I am going to be intentional about being kind to people with random acts this entire month.
I want to challenge everyone reading this. Let’s try to say three positive things to others for every one negative thing we say. That is 3:1! Let’s practice this while we are on the job with our co-workers. I am even going to point out three positive things this month to our leaders for every one area of correction that I make. Do you think I can do it? Do you think you can do it?
For 2018, let’s rename February and call it FAB-uary!!! It is going to be a FABULOUS month!!
The Gift of 2018
Posted January 1st, 2018
We should all begin the new year by remembering that we are HERE and we have been given a gift. Our gift is life, and breath, and hope. Our future is a blank canvas. We get to determine how our life from this moment forward will be lived. We get to determine how we will make a positive impact on this world.
The cool thing about our life is that God has wired each of us with individual talents, strengths and possibilities. In the history of the world there has never ever been another YOU! It is so counter productive to spend even a nano second thinking about who we are NOT.
Not smart enough.
Not tall enough.
Not organized enough.
Not fast enough.
Not social enough.
We should also not spend one nano second in comparing ourselves to others. President Theodore Roosevelt said, “Comparison is the robber of joy”. There will always be someone smarter, more educated, more gifted, prettier, quicker, etc. But there will NEVER EVER be someone better at being YOU!!! You and your life are a GIFT.
As we begin 2018, I want to challenge you to have the courage to be the very best YOU that you can be. You may be shocked at how great you are at it!!!
Yesterday is over. Tomorrow is uncertain. But TODAY is a gift from God that we have been given. 2018 is our gift! Let’s choose to be GREAT!
Happy New Year!!
Mercies & Kindnesses
Posted December 1st, 2017
“Thank the Lord for his mercies and kindnesses. Amen.”
Growing up, this is the blessing that my family said at the table at every meal right before we began to eat. When I was little I loved this blessing, because it is so short and I didn’t want to take any more time than necessary to begin eating my mother’s home cooked delicacies.
As I became older, I started to feel just a little guilty when we said this blessing, because I felt like it was far too short of a “thank you” to God for all that he has provided for us.
But now, as an adult with a family of my own, business responsibilities, friends, and lots and lots of blessings – I realize that this very short blessing that I have been reciting my entire life – says all that needs to be said. “Thank you Lord for being merciful to me by not giving me what I deserve, and thank you for being kind to me by giving me so many blessings that I do not deserve.”
Christmas is the most awesome time of the year. It is among the food, candies, gifts, family, friends, music and decorations that we are reminded of God’s kindnesses.
And then there is the story of Christmas itself. That God became human. That he sent Jesus to walk among us, to teach us, and to heal us. And ultimately to extend to us the greatest mercy of all – regardless of our sin and our shortcomings – that God’s love has no boundaries. God loves us in spite of ourselves. He pursues us every single day and he finds joy in forgiving us for our transgressions.
Christmas is knowing that God is merciful and kind. I pray that you can find Christmas this year. It is right there in your heart. “Thank the Lord for his mercies and kindnesses. Amen.”
Things I am thankful for…..
Posted November 1st, 2017
The mess to clean up after a party because it means I am surrounded by friends….
The taxes I pay because it means I have a job….
The clothes that fit a little snug because it means I have food to eat…
A lawn that needs mowing, windows that need cleaning, and gutters that need fixing because it means I have a home…..
The space I find at the end of the parking lot because it means I am capable of walking….
My big heating bill because it means I am warm….
The lady behind me at church that sings off key because it means she is worshiping and it means I can hear….
The piles of laundry because it means I have clothes to wear…
Weariness and aching muscles at the end of the day because it means I have been productive….
The alarm that goes off in the early hours of the morning because it means I am alive!
The Genius of the “And”: Top Gun!
Posted October 1st, 2017
It doesn’t take long to figure out that doing one thing well is not very difficult. Most of us are smart enough that if we concentrate on one single thing – we will be good at it. Well, we know that both life and business require for us to be successful at more than one thing. In fact, at Chick-fil-A, we consider many things important, and we work hard to be our best in many different areas. It takes talent, skill and effort to win in multiple areas. You could say that to be good in many things actually takes “genius”. Sometimes, our Athens Chick-fil-A leaders refer to “the genius of the AND”. That means we are winning at this AND that AND this AND the other. And we’re proud to say we are!
We have just been notified that our two stores, Barnett Shoals and Beechwood, have been awarded the “Top Gun” award from CFA, Inc. In fact we are at the very top of the list – #1 – in the chain for being both fast AND accurate!!! We are at the top of the chain in speed of service to our customers while also being among the most accurate restaurants in all of Chick-fil-A. This is REALLY hard to do… both FAST and ACCURATE at the same time. But our team is doing it!!
We’re so thankful to each of our team members for working with urgency to serve guests fast AND concentrating to fill the orders correctly!! Team, you are TOP GUN!!! You are also GENIUS!!
Honor, Dignity and Respect
Posted September 1st, 2017
In Athens, we have a tremendous impact on our guests and our community when we operate at a high level. One of the ways we impact so many people is by treating them with honor and dignity and respect.
“Yes ma’am”. “My pleasure”. “I would be delighted to carry that for you.” Speaking to people with kindness and with respectful lingo brings honor to them.
Holding doors for our guests. Removing trays from tables. Making eye contact when we speak. These gestures of kindness show dignity to our guests and our teammates.
The world desperately needs kindness! We can practice kindness in all parts of our life. At the grocery store parking lot, we can offer to roll the cart back to the store for someone. In a fast food drive thru we can speak kindly to the worker in the window.
At Chick-fil-A, we highly value treating people with honor, dignity and respect. We’re so grateful to our team for modeling this for the world to see and for our customers to experience. These actions are contagious!! This kindness makes the world a better place.
Have a great September!!
Posted August 1st, 2017
Our mission at Chick-fil-A is simply “to be the best that we can be…”
We have the opportunity to SERVE guests at an extremely high level. With warm and engaging greetings, eye contact, smiles, enthusiastic tone of voice, and a fond farewell. We get to do this to thousands of guests every day!!! We get to go the “second mile” by following our warm-hearted impulses to serve above and beyond. We get to be a bright light in a dark world. Recently, one of our managers actually changed a customer’s flat tire in our parking lot. Now THAT is going the second mile!!!
We have the opportunity to INFLUENCE each other in a positive way. For our team to receive positive instruction and communication from our leaders. For each of us to speak kindly to each other and encourage each other. For each one of us to work hard and “pull our weight” so that no one has to carry too much of the load alone. For us to challenge each other to be the best that we can be on each and every shift. For everyone of us to experience fulfillment at work.
We have the opportunity to BUILD our business and let our light shine throughout this entire community. By serving crave-able food, delivering to customers that otherwise would not eat with us, and by being fun and relevant on social media we can create new business opportunities. We get to look for new business ventures every day so as to create more jobs and meet the needs of more people.
SERVE, INFLUENCE and BUILD is what it means to be the best that we can be. This is what we get to do. This is our mission!
Posted July 1st, 2017
My two favorite team sports are football and basketball. The two have a a lot in common: offense, defense, great plays, great players, great coaches, upsets, comebacks, and… halftime. Some sports, like baseball, do not have a half time, but football and basketball do. Halftime is a time to get a little rest and regroup. It is a time to consider the performance of the first half and make necessary adjustments for the second half. Sometimes, halftime is even a time to recalibrate the goals that were set before the game.
For many of you, May represents the beginning of halftime for the year of 2017. Many of you have been in school for the entire year to this point and will resume in August. Some of you will continue to go to school this summer, but at a slightly slower pace. Others of us are not in school, but Memorial Day is the unofficial beginning of summer in which we look forward to a little down time.
I hope that each of you will be able to take advantage of your “halftime” to prepare for the second half. Make a commitment to better yourself this summer, to experience something new, to recalibrate your goals, to rest in the Lord for a while, to hang out with old friends, to make new friends, to go to the beach or the mountains, to eat a fresh tomato sandwich, and to love life!
Halftime exists for a reason. No, life does not stop. The bills continue to come in. The responsibilities still exist. But, halftime can be a little different pace than the rest of the year. I hope and pray that you come out of halftime refreshed and ready to win the second half of 2017!
Make A Difference
Posted March 1st, 2017
My two sons play basketball, and these are my words to them whenever they have practice or a game: “Hustle your ‘backside’ off. Obey your coach. Make a difference.” These are simple words, but very profound – and I believe it is great advice for any athlete or anyone who is part of a team. Ultimately, we all want our efforts to make a difference. It would be terrible if we put a lot of effort into something and it not make a difference.
This week I received a four paragraph email from a guest explaining to me how much his visit to our store made a difference in his day. His daughter had broken her arm and as soon as she left her hospital in her new cast, she wanted to go to Chick-fil-A. Well, her visit to our store turned a terrible day into a good day for her, because we had a team member “make a difference” by taking an interest in the little girl. The team member even offered her a free milkshake, and her father was so touched that he sent me an email to let me know.
This example is just one of so many examples of ways that we are able to make a difference in the lives of guests every day by the way our team treats them with honor, dignity and respect and by the way our team serves them.
It’s an honor to serve you and work to make a difference for you, our guests, every day at Chick-fil-A!!