Is that the best you can do?

Yesterday, I was reading an article in the Wall Street Journal which profiled the CEO of a well-known American company.  When asked to describe the spirit his company was born from, he remarked that it was derived from one simple quote, “is that the best you can do?”   It’s a challenging phrase.  I’ve repeated it several times to myself in the last few days trying to decide if it feels more like a negative criticism or a positive challenge. 

In my opinion, it was perfectly timed this week; having just celebrated our Veterans on Monday, the single day of the year we have set aside for recognizing our service men and women who have returned home. 

Each year a large knot forms in my throat when this holiday arrives.  It starts with the thought of a veteran I know, one of my family members or friends, standing in harm’s way, for the purpose of protecting our country.  Instantly, I am rendered useless.  Perhaps you’ve felt this too and cannot imagine the strength it takes to leave home to do what they’ve done, not knowing what the outcome might be. 

So, “is this the best we can do?” 

Honoring and celebrating the individuals who have given years of their life serving our country in one 24-hour period doesn’t seem like enough.  What would “enough,” be?  What would it look like if we were more aware and thankful each day? 

Maybe it would look like a hug, or a thank you note, given on any day at all, just because it’s due.  Or maybe it would include taking a detour off our regular path to spend a little time refreshing ourselves on the battles we’ve fought as a country; visiting a memorial site or history exhibit or watching something on TV that explains why we fought those battles and what it must have looked like, and felt like, to be in those moments. 

We have many veterans in all departments of Bayer Built and who surround us in our hometowns every day, throughout all of our territories.  For each and every one of you, we are thankful.  Thank you for the time you sacrificed, the bravery you showed and your dedication to our great nation…even though today is just Friday.