I can’t believe it’s been over two years since I lost my dad.

Over the holiday weekend, I couldn’t help but think about all the great (and not so great) moments with my dad.

I celebrated Father’s Day with my family at a place called Peddler’s Village in Pennsylvania. It felt like I was on a Disney vacation with my parents which brought back all kinds of nice memories. Some of those memories are lessons that stick in my mind as I apply them to business and share with my children. Here are some of my favorites.

Establish Important Relationships
Obvious when it comes to business networking. Dad always knew the names of the people he dealt with, the kid at the deli counter, mechanic, bank teller, the list goes on. When you call people by name, it’s so much easier to solve a problem or get the side of cole slaw on the house.

Stand Your Ground
When I was in grade school, I would often get picked on. And not the social media kind of picked on. Dad told me not to let myself get pushed around by anyone. And when the time came, I didn’t.

Stay Focused
My dad never let an issue go (for better or worse!) until it was resolved. Often, if we focus on solving the one problem or the biggest problem, it’s easier to handle the smaller stuff.

Be On Time
When you’re early for meetings or events, people respect you. More importantly, it takes the stress out of rushing to get somewhere. Besides, when you’re early, there is time to review notes, grab a cup of coffee, get a table, check email, and handle other tasks.

Work Hard
There is no substitute for hard work. My dad used to tell me to work on being the best I could be at whatever I was doing.

Take Care of Yourself
Dad lifted weights and made sure he was in tip top shape to handle bad guys as a NYC police officer. Taking care of yourself will make you feel good, be more confident, and be more disciplined in other areas of life.

Look Back Before Leaving
If you look behind you (or around) before leaving wherever you are, you will almost never forget anything. Before walking away, look back to see if you left the lights on, a door open, or your phone on the roof. What a great habit!

Never Let Anyone Drive Your Car
Ever get anxious when someone is on your tail when you’re driving? How does it make you react? How often do we let others influence what we do? If you truly believe you’re doing the right thing, stand your ground.

Help Without Expecting Anything in Return
Hold a door open, carry a bag, pay for someone’s coffee, make a valuable introduction, refer someone business. And smile. Who couldn’t use a smile to help them through the day?

Although my dad never meant these lessons to be applied to business, they absolutely do. Apply them and see what happens.

It might remind you of your dad.


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