Lessons Learned Beyond Self Storage

Lessons Learned Beyond Self Storage

The Self Storage Association Spring Conference and Trade Show has come and gone, but we take with us some lasting memories. As always, it’s nice to meet and greet fellow storage aficionados. Networking of course, is vital in any business field and USSelfStorageLocator.com has hopefully attracted some key relationships.

As TRADE SHOWS/CONFERENCES/and EXPOS go, you had the usual: Exhibits, social chat-N-chew/cocktail time, seminars, and guests speakers. The keynote speaker was NASCAR Team owner Joe Gibbs. The former two-time Washington Redskins head coach gave an enlightening ‘pep talk’ to a standing-room crowd that filled a humongous hall – which seemed larger than a football field. The title of the address was appropriately “Building Your Game Plan for Life.” What Gibbs spoke of is useful and can be applied beyond the self storage industry and business as a whole. Gibbs detailed his personal experiences of targeting individuals with solid qualities and abilities. He spoke of molding talent, leading staff personnel, having a group of individuals become team-oriented, to have that team believe in the leader, and to ultimately achieve success. The Christian-principled, Enka, North Carolina-born Gibbs spoke more like an uncle at a family gathering—simply telling stories to all those within earshot; more so than an orator delivering a Les Brown/Tony Robbins-type motivation speech. The crowd of self storage owners, exhibitors, and managers, appeared very attentive of his musings from his past and current NFL and NASCAR triumphs and missteps.

Overall the former gridiron tactician articulated his beliefs of what builds winners. Years of prioritizing his career, as being most important in his life, has taught Gibbs a valuable lesson. The real ‘game of life’ ordained Gibbs to understand that God and Family supersede all else.

At the conclusion of Mr. Gibbs’ speech, there was a question-and-answer session. I posed the question to Mr. Gibbs concerning his greatest failures in life and what were they? He quickly reflected on being absence from so many family photos and video/DVDs. He revealed that he put his career before family as a younger man and advised against those that are on that same path today. He later thanked me for my question, as he exited the hall.

In retrospect, I would guess that Gibbs would probably trade at least one of his three Super Bowl victories to have been more active in the lives of his wife and children.

When Gibbs spoke about family and God, it was as if he no longer were standing before business-minded individuals seeking a golden nugget to grow their businesses. I guess coach was giving us his most valuable ‘play call’ from his Playbook of Life. Take heed to the coaches’ words of wisdom, as we pursue greener pastures in the self storage landscape.