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My life has changed since starting Talent Plus over 25 years ago. Every day I learn something to apply to my everyday living. One of those life changes is the feeling of gratitude. It inspires me to remember special times with associates, their families, our clients and community pillars.

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Discretionary effort is the level of effort one is capable of giving to a task, assignment or mission above and beyond the minimum required. Here’s an example. My associate, Cindi Keister, creates the warm welcome experience for visitors to my company’s headquarters. This includes people who call on the phone as well as those whose visit in person. Coincidentally, our phone number is very similar to the phone number of a local hospital, which results in frequent wrong numbers.

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Yesterday several of my associates participated in a “polar plunge” to raise money for the Special Olympics. This group of meshugenahs jumped into an ice-cold lake on February 23 in Lincoln, Nebraska. Ice had to be cleared before they could go in. None of them had ever done this before, and I assure you they were definitely outside their comfort zones.

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“Now, here,” the Red Queen explains to Alice, “it takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place.” Through the Looking Glass, and What Alice Found There, by Lewis Carroll, 1871.

A new associate at my company told me the following story. “Two weeks ago I learned how to use the Lead Contact list (a data base necessary for his role). I just found out that we’re migrating all that information to our Salesforce platform. So what I just learned two weeks ago has become obsolete!” That’s the theme of this post. We’re always going to be behind. I wish I could remember where I read that profoundly important insight so I could give credit appropriately.

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