Today begins my own version of #MarchMadness. I’m still a college basketball fan, and I will be following the teams representing my powerhouse undergraduate schools (the University of Kentucky, where I played softball, and the University of Louisville, which granted me a Bachelor of Science degree). Yet I have decided to spend this month also playing my #GratitudeGame* with the many corporations and organizations that make my life easier.
In this world where we love to demonize those who we perceive as having “too much”: influence, money or power, I want to thank those who have taken the risks that most of us avoid. I want to acknowledge the courage and persistence of the founders who were told at least once to stop chasing their dreams and to “get a ‘real’ job.” I want to show compassion for them in the face of bad decisions, errors and the small problems they allowed to persist and grow into disastrous financial losses, injuries, lawsuits, media coverage, and processes.
I want to stop expecting perfection–from business, governments, humans, or myself–yet without abandoning accountability and responsibility. In some ways this is also a social experiment. Will these organizations focus on creating more of what we love about them, if we acknowledge them for it? We shall see.
I start with @Chase bank, with which I have a love-hate relationship many days of each week.
#HappyWorthDay! Today, I am celebrating the value you have brought to my life.
Thank you for:
1. Making it very convenient for me to run my business. I complain when your services occasionally aren’t as effective as I expect them to be, but I acknowledge that it’s very easy for me to find an automated teller machine (“ATM”) in New York City and to conduct transactions 24 hours per day. I don’t have to close my business to visit a branch during “normal business hours” for approximately 99% of my transactions. I take that for granted. #thingsitakeforgranted
2. Being highly effective at identifying fraudulent transactions on my accounts. I almost always get a call within the hour of suspicious activity. You are probably better than I am at seeing this, and I am very good at pattern recognition and behavior trending.
3. Doing a relatively good job at keeping data and funds secure. It is no small feat in this technology age to have so many incident-free days, especially considering the number of transactions that are processed each day. I will try to remember this the next time I panic when I learn of an error and need to call customer service.
In short, you make a difference, even when you doubt you do. I hope you will put your focus on making an even bigger difference.