"After catching up some of the desk items that piled up the last couple weeks, it was time to work on finalizing some of my presentations for the big shows – and the main focus was on the deck I am presenting for the ConnectWise Partner Summit which follows our HTG event immediately in the same hotel. As I worked to reduce the content I had pulled together it occurred to me that much has changed in the 25 years I have worked in IT. My topic for two breakout sessions I am leading is “10 Things I Accidentally Learned Along the Way”. It is the top ten list of learning’s I have had leading a company the past quarter century. Remember that we are a technology company – have always been one – and as I pondered and prayed about what ten things mattered it was a bit shocking. Not one of the top ten things I have learned really has anything to do with technology at all. Over the last 25 years I have spent thousands of hours learning speeds and feeds, sat through hundreds of presentations on the latest and coolest gadgets and hardware, seen the development of things like the Internet, mobile phones, notebook computers, PDA’s and dozens of really useful and cool technologies. But when I boiled down the things that really matter – technology didn’t even make the list. I am not sure it would even make the list in the top twenty things I have learned.
So what did? In a word – every learning that really makes a difference has to do with people. That caught me a bit off guard. The keys to success and growth have not been about chasing the latest cool and shiny objects – it has been around taking care of business which inevitably means people stuff. I expected that the top items would focus that way – but never expected all ten of my top learning’s would be about everything except technology. It will be interesting to see what the response is to my presentation. It is a technology event after all, and attendees may expect some words around that topic. But the reality is that we live and serve people and the technology is just a tool to get that job done.
Sunday night in small group we finished our series on work. The lesson was rather powerful as we were challenged to get our life-work balance in order. The key point is that there are only a few things that we alone can do. That no one else can come close to replacing us in. I submit there are but three:
1. Our relationship with God
2. Our relationship with our spouse
3. Our relationship with our kids
Andy Stanley makes the point a few dozen times that when we make the CHOICE to spend our time on work and effectively ignore our other responsibilities – we are cheating those we love of what they deserve. We are in fact cheating them of what God intends. No one can have your personal relationship with God, spouse or kids but YOU. So while we try and justify the reasons why we spend so much time on other things, there is no excuse. It is a choice. We try and make it sound spiritual by asking God to step in and replace us at home – but it doesn’t cut it. We have to take back our time and our focus. There is enough time for all that matters if we make the right choices. Are you? I know often I didn’t and still don’t. But I have made some major changes and am confident that God is honoring that effort."
I totally agree with all of this and can say I have made some changes in the past few years and have even more to make. I think this is all about the daily choices. It's great to have an anniversary date or an annual vacation with your family. But what do you do daily? Do you know what's going on in your kid's life? Do you tell your spouse daily that you love them and appreciate them? Do you come home and actually engage with family members or do you head to the TV or computer? What do YOU think?