More About Everyday Heroes

April 27, 2010 at 5:34 pm 3 comments

Click on me!

Sam (not his name) works at the local oil change franchise. He’s been there a long time. My wife started going there in 1992 when she moved to Overland Park, KS and Sam was there then. Sam is a hero to me.

Sam works three jobs. He works full time days at the oil change place, nights at the Post Office and on weekends at a local BBQ franchise. Today I went in for an oil change and for the first time I saw Sam sitting. He told me that business was really slow and that they were just trying to keep the doors open.

Usually Sam is busy cleaning the restroom, sweeping the floor, waiting on customers, and/or helping the guys with the oil changing. He’s always in motion normally. Maybe he moves a little slower of late because Sam also needs not one but two hip replacements. You can tell by the way he walks that he’s in a lot of pain, yet he still has an ear-to-ear smile, a warm greeting and wants to know how the “Missus” is doing.

Sam is not only a hard worker but also a man of honor. For years he supported his ill wife and stayed married to her despite the marriage being beyond repair. Unlike some of our politicians and leaders who ditch their wives when they get sick or don’t happen to be the Washington or corporate type, Sam stayed with her until she was well enough to be on her own. Then and only then did they divorce and Sam moved on by remarrying. He’s very happy now and is looking forward to moving soon to Dallas to start a new life.

How many of us have that kind of integrity? How many of us would work three jobs to pay off debts and build a new life? I’ve never had to, but if faced with it, I don’t know, as I would have it in me to take on that kind of load. Yet, there he is, year after year, shuffling around the shop keeping busy and smiling.

Sam is an everyday hero to me. He just keep plugging along like the Energizer Bunny. Nothing stops him from smiling. I want to be more like him. I think I know how.

Be Thankful
Sam looks to be thankful for each and everyday. I know he’s thankful for his used car because he keeps it spotless. That tells a lot about somebody when they take care of what they’ve been blessed to have.

Be Cheerful
I’ve never seen Sam down. He’s always got a smile and a kind word. We need more of that in this world right now.

Be Forgiving
I’ve had differences with Sam in the past. Though I was in the right at the time I handled it totally wrong. Sam never held it against me, and never mentions the situation. He has a forgiving nature and that goes a long way in my book. As a human I need a lot of forgiveness day in and day out from my fellow man.

Sam has taught me a lot by taking me back to the basics. Basics he probably learned as a child. Basics we all should have learned as a child. We just need to remember them and to start practicing them daily.

Going back to these basics in the business world is a great idea. Follow Sam’s example and keep your customers coming back. I can help you spread the word just give me a call. My contact info is:

Michael Irvin
Creative Project Manager
913.677.7060 cell: 913.530.7030

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Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Chuck Franks  |  April 27, 2010 at 11:01 pm

    Forgiveness is apparently quite the theme. I just finished a day long seminar “The Art and Science of Forgiveness” and I’m sitting here pondering what I learned today in a coffee shop in St. Louis. I hope I can measure up to Sam’s ability to forgive in my business.

    Thanks Michael

    • 2. mirvin1129  |  April 28, 2010 at 4:01 pm

      Letting go is the hard part of forgiveness. I beat myself up for the way I treated people in the distant past even though if I was to see them today they have forgotten about it. I have a thing attached to my mirror that says I forgive myself and others and move on in love leaving the past behind. Good words, tough action.

      Thanks for the kind words.

  • 3. Christina Irvin  |  April 28, 2010 at 2:29 pm

    Yup, I am the wife. Some added info about “Sam” – I kept going back because of “Sams’s” business integrity and commitment to excellent customer service. He did and is all those things Michael wrote – and takes it one step further – when you are in his lobby and he is talking with you about your car or wrapping up your service he is Focused on you – not the noise in the shop, not the kid screaming in the lobby, not the blaring TV — you. You have his full attention — clear up to hopping around the corner of the counter to make it to the door so he can open it and wish you a sincerely spoke very good day, complete with a huge smile. He is indeed an everyday hero and understands what it takes to maintain his returning customer base since 1992. Oh, and the shop is not his. He is “just” an employee; yet I go there because I am “his” customer because he “takes care” of me and my car, and now my husbands. I love everyday hero’s!


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