Thanksgiving week is my favorite week of the year. While a time to give thanks isn’t limited to a day or a week, this series of days seems to call for more reflection and thought about what I am truly thankful for in my life.

Aside from that, this week also serves up the biggest rivalry in college football as the Michigan Wolverines battle the Ohio State Buckeyes. For the Buckeye Fans in our Thoughtwave Community, of which there are many, I offer my respect for your impressive domination of my beloved Wolverines over the last 13 years.

As I reflect, one of the things that I’m most thankful for are the numerous people who I’ve had the opportunity to challenge and support in their growth and development. It’s truly humbling to consider the privilege of helping people think beyond boundaries and maximize their potential and capacity as they define their evolution both personally and professionally. People and companies across this country have been, and continue to be, impacted as a result of your leadership.

The Core of Purpose and Growth

People just like you are at the core of my purpose. Whether you are the family in family business, an existing leader in a family-owned, privately-held company, an emerging leader in your company or someone who wants to define their identity; I’m thankful for the opportunity to work with people just like you. Mediocre doesn’t much enjoy hanging out with me and I’m thankful for that as well.

You are someone who wants to grow both personally and professionally. Someone who isn’t comfortable with the status quo when you know more is possible. You continually pursue development because you recognize that true development is never-ending. You challenge me to bring my best to the table. You are a diverse group in thought, gender, age, background, ethnicity and that makes you seriously interesting.

The Awareness of Where You Want to Go and Grow

Could you be the next… (fill in the position name of your choice)? This is a question I ask regularly to help people vision/see something that they may never have considered. This is about setting your sites on something that allows you to maximize your influence and your potential. This is about thinking beyond the boundaries of your own definition. This isn’t about false hope or positional delusion. This is about where you want to grow.

Many of you ask me about how you can continue to advance your career. My response is consistent. “Start thinking at the position/place you see yourself headed toward while appreciating and valuing where you find yourself now.” Maximizing you and your opportunities comes with the awareness that you shouldn’t look past the experiences of your present as a key factor of success in your future. Those experiences may only come around once so be thankful for them and gain advantage from them. Just because you didn’t think/see yourself in a particular position doesn’t mean you shouldn’t engage the opportunity.

When you activate your awareness, mindset and thinking at a different level you’re demonstrating your capacity to advance. The alternative is to sit around and wait for someone to notify you of the required activation. This demonstrates something far different.


You can be more and you can achieve more if you’re willing to ask yourself and others you respect, what you need to start doing now to facilitate individual growth. Do nothing and you can expect the predictable return of nothing.

When I think back on the past year, I’m thankful for many things. The positives, the negatives, the experiences and the lessons. Some of these experiences and lessons were planned, some were definitely not planned. They were all meaningful as a part of my growth and never-ending development. My hope is that you will reflect and feel the same way.

The development and growth of people is serious business and one of the most important things we can do to improve and advance the leadership of others, the performance of companies and the legacy of families in business.

My hope for you this week is that you would be thankful for the people in your life as I am thankful for you.

Go Blue!

P.S. Want to jumpstart your 2019 growth? Join the #ThoughtstarterChallenge