Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life. – Steve Jobs
I remember this clearly. It was a few years ago. I was in Philadelphia for NAFCU’s Management and Leadership Institute. As I looked out the 33rd floor window at the city skyline, a buried memory rushed to the surface. I worked in Philadelphia in the summer of 1993. I lived with my cousin Sean, and we spent our nights exploring the city and rooting on the Phils.
That’s where I worked in 1993.
I wrote for my college newspaper, and I thought I was a fantastic writer. So I was attracted to one job opening in particular – a “gopher” position inside a Philadelphia publishing house. I pulled out a resume and pounded out a cover letter.
A few days later, they called to set up an interview. On the big day, I had a fantastic visit. The job would be perfect. Many of the tasks would be basic, but if I stuck it out, there’d be press releases I could write. Plus I could sit quietly in staff meetings and soak it all in. I was excited.
As the interview neared its end, the gentleman pulled out my resume and my cover letter. As he turned them around, my heart dropped. I clearly saw three typos circled on my cover letter.
“Anthony, you’re a great kid. But we’re in the writing business. There’s no way we can hire someone with three typos in their cover letter. I’m hoping that someday, you’ll thank me.”
I was embarrassed. And a bit angry. Why would someone bring me down and put me through a complete interview only to let me know that I never had the job.
Fast forward 20-some years. As I looked out that window high above Philadelphia, I realized the man was a champ. He took the time to teach me some very important lessons. You get one chance to make a first impression. Your words represent you. I remember that day clearly, and how I felt as I took the elevator down to the street.
I wonder if he ever thinks about what he did. In any event, I apologize for the tardiness.
Wherever you are…many thanks.