I had a quick conversation with my father the other night right after I had learned that my youngest had fallen off of our zipline in the backyard and really busted up her ankle and leg.
I had just landed in Houston to spend 4 days with the local team here to help launch our new campuses as we take over the great state of Texas (and eat some great Texas-sized food) and my family needed me back home asap.
Ah, what to do, what to do!
I’d be lying to you if I didn’t admit that I did hesitate for a moment as I thought through my options; shoot, I was really excited about hanging with the team that we’ve assembled here as well as checking out the neat spaces that we’ve been entertaining to house our next software cohorts.
But the choice was clear and obvious and I booked the soonest possible flight back home so that I could be present and helpful as well as give my youngest the hugs that she needed!
The original plan had also included spending a day in Austin and to spend a night at my parents’ home in the beautiful Hill Country and I was calling my dad to let him know that I wouldn’t be showing up Tuesday night.
He asked how Sue and Arden were doing and quickly asked if it was okay with my team that I had to jump-ship on such an important trip with such short notice. Before I could answer he let me know his thoughts plainly:
… because if they are not okay with that then they aren’t worth working for.
I reassured him that my team was great and more than capable of handling the work without me and, most importantly, that no one was going to give me any grief about this decision.
As I had some time to think on my plane ride back my thoughts wandered back to this short exchange and it made me smile to think that I do in fact have a team who’s priorities are aligned intimately with mine and that we have created a culture through action, not just words, that supports the family dynamic; not all of my previous partners nor employers have been like that as they may have given it lip-service but failed the litmus test when truly tested.
Life is far too short to work with people who are, as my father put it, not worth working for (or with). If you ever find yourself in that position it behooves you to find some place else to go.
[Update: She broke her leg and got a Purple Cast!]