Last week I stumbled across this post. I’d written it two years ago about my trips to Arizona for Spring Training and all the amazing people with whom I’ve been blessed to spend time. It seems high time to share it.
Earlier this year, I was in Peoria, Arizona for Spring Training to cover an event for the Seattle Mariners RBI Club. This is a nonprofit with which I help. The trip was fantastic. It was baseball, baseball, baseball the way baseball is supposed to be. I sat on the grass and soaked up the sun. I watched big leaguers and not so big leaguers face one another. Little kids ran in circles. Twenty-somethings drank beer and made jokes. Grandparents bought gifts to send home. There were hot dogs with grilled onions and garlic fries with WAY too much garlic. (I avoided said fries.)
While I could keep gushing about all things Spring Training – including the handsome young men, large cups of cold beer, and warm weather – I have something else I’d like to share with you. I stayed with one of the club’s members and his wife. They’re a couple who are older than I. They split their time between Mariners games in Arizona and Mariners games in Seattle.
Being a 20-something, I don’t spend a lot of time with older individuals. However, each night I found myself enjoying a cocktail and fantastic conversation. We discussed abortion, marriage equality, and gun rights. We talked about airplane travel and the checked bag dilemma. The pros and cons of a new sports arena in Seattle were weighed. We oohed and aahed over Chinese food and a fantastic selection of cheese.
My final night as I was falling asleep, I couldn’t help but ask myself what made this couple so wonderful to be with. And then it hit me. Graciousness.
Since then I have spent a lot of time thinking about graciousness and how its warmth and kindness can envelope you. It’s not a quality we often talk about in regard to business. But it is so important. Don’t you think? Showing your clients, prospects, and colleagues they are important to you, builds the relationships which lead to your success.
How in the business world can you put this lesson into practice? How about sending notes? From the simple thank you note to the, “I’m just thinking of you” email, you can help these connections continue to grow and strengthen. There are a lot of other ways to be gracious. What are some of the ways you are gracious in business?