In this day and age, where nothing is easy, we’ve accomplished a great deal as a business over the past few years. Last month we hit several milestones sooner than we had anticipated. One of the things I love about our company is that whenever we’re at a meeting and we’re discussing something big that we’ve done, there’s always talk of how and when we’re going to celebrate.
Last night we went to dinner at a “trendy” wine bar in Albany. It was possibly the best meal I’ve ever had in my life. The whole thing took almost four hours. It wasn’t just dinner, it was an experience, and for us it was a celebration. The wine was great and the food was great. The place knew just how long to wait between the first bottle of wine and the appetizers, the appetizers and the entree, and the entree and dessert. We never felt rushed. We just sat back and had a great time. Other than a toast in the beginning, business wasn’t even a topic of conversation.
For me, it’s rare that I’ll spend that long doing anything. It’s all about being efficient and squeezing the most out of every day, and most of the time that’s a good thing. But man, I sure do love kicking back from time to time and just appreciating the hard work and success that’s come our way.
One of the things I always notice entrepreneurs mention in retrospect is that they wish they took more time to enjoy the ride. I think there’s an underlying assumption that everything will be better/easier for the business owner as times goes on. To some extent that’s true, but mostly you just have a new set of problems as you start to hire employees and expand. Unless you sell off for millions, there’s never that one moment where everything is “perfect”. If you don’t celebrate along the way, there’s a chance that you never will.
I’m glad that we have nights like last night where we do take a step back and admire where we’re at. Furthermore, I’m glad that the company picks up the tab. It shows that we view these nights as good investments of company time and money. What fun is anything in life if you can’t enjoy what you’ve accomplished?