It’s graduation season, and I can’t tell you how much that means to me personally this year, as my oldest is graduating from High School. I just finished shooting a little video, as I am unable to make it to the ceremony in person this year at other schools, as I’ll be playing the role of Dad / MLA at my son’s ceremony. The message that I gave to the students is one that I’d like to share with you as well; they are based on observations that I’ve had over the years, things that have helped me to put things into perspective in both my work and personal lives.
1. Time is the most precious thing that anyone can give you. Respect that, cherish it, and don’t squander that gift. We all are born, and we will all die, the biggest variable is how much time we have on God’s green earth. The time we take for others, and for ourselves, is meaningful, so let’s make the most of it.
2. Three basic nonnegotiable rules that I had for anyone joining one of our project teams or offices:
a. Work Hard
b. Have Fun
c. Don’t let the team down
These rules were essential, not only for the success of the project, but for the success of the individual as well.
Working hard, not hardly working; if you are doing a job, do it well. You should obviously work smart, but also make sure that you put in a good honest effort. If you work hard, and are disciplined, you will not only achieve your goals, but will help many more along the way.
Have fun: whistle while you work, enjoy the moment, enjoy your downtime, look on the bright side. There are so many people that want to concentrate on the bad stuff, but we need to learn to see life for the fun it can be, for the small miracles around us, and share that enthusiasm. Don’t forget to smile, it is contagious. And above all, have fun…it’s way better than the other option.
Do not let the team down. Being an army of one may sound cool, but quite frankly, unless you are part of a team, your goals will not be achieved. Again, people have invested time into you, giving the same commitment back to them is vital. Knowing that what you do will have an impact on others; they trust you, they have spent time with you and for you: do not let them down. If you master steps one and two, this third one will fall into place.
I look forward to hearing all about the trials and tribulations, hopes and dreams. Graduation season is invigorating to me; it truly is inspiring when I see the new crop of young Albertans take their place and make their mark in our province. I know that the time others have contributed was not wasted, because these young Albertans are going to take us further than we ever could have imagined; we just need to make sure they have the best chance possible, and they will take it from there.
They are a resilient and gritty group who have weathered a pandemic and made it to the finish line of graduation when all the odds were stacked against them. Let’s continue to do our part, knocking down as many obstacles as possible, and get out of their way, because they will all too soon be grabbing the torch and leading the charge.
Congrats to all our 2022 graduates.