CUP o’ JOE: Spare Time, What to Do?

This past couple of years, it seems like we don’t spend so much of our time dealer trading, making deliveries…you remember when we used to do dealer trades, don’t you?  Anyway, it seems that we have time to do other things, and that’s not all bad. 

Now we can either spend more time making things happen, letting things happen, or simply gazing out there, stunned, thinking “…WHAT HAPPENED?” 

I can’t control the shortages.  I can’t control the trends that don’t serve my frustrated clients.  I can’t control world events that bring about the outcomes we face. 

But there are things I can control. 

I had the opportunity to spend time with Alan Mulally recently, and observed a few things that are important for me to keep close.  He is faithfully, almost fanatically, positive.  He is always looking to serve: one of his mantras is, “To Live is To Serve.”  And in the way that he carries himself talking to a bunch of us at a Truck Club (Association) meeting, sharing and relating as one of us in the lower altitudes is truly inspirational. 

As I read the book “American Icon” a few years ago, I was thinking about the timeline when Chrysler and General Motors were in deep debt, seeking federal assistance, and Alan was there at the hearings, advocating for their survival: indeed for the survival of the national economy. 

Then, the week before GM filed for bankruptcy, he took the time to come to our Club meeting in Seattle!

He had been having almost daily dialogue with key people in the federal government, with other OEMs, with leaders from other nations in which Ford was a key manufacturer. Crazy times for sure.  But, he made himself available to talk to us blue-collar FordPros, sharing his vision, his confidence, showing an incredible resiliency that created the phenomenal turnaround that we still prosper in today.

Alan seems always to be in command of his optimism: and it’s so contagious.

Now retired (in 2014), and some 75 years in age, Alan is still enthusiastically looking to the future, to a brighter tomorrow for all of us.  And when he returned to talk to some seventy of us, he brought his great optimism to us, once again. 

Thank you, Alan Mulally!  Your light shines as bright as a beacon on a hill!