I barely ever make work-related friends, but I’m lucky to have 4-5 people in my life who have known me forever. One of those guys is Jeff.
Jeff and I shouldn’t be friends. We are political opposites. We don’t live near one another or work together, anymore. But there was this one time when I complained about not being asked about a business-related decision. He said, “You work in HR. You will never be consulted on anything.”
I must’ve seemed devastated because he quickly added, “But don’t worry. I work in communications. Nobody asks me anything, either. We just follow orders, Laurie, but we have great jobs. Be appreciative and don’t sulk.”
Boom. I didn’t need a big brother at work, but I got one. Right there. On the spot. For life.
Jeff and I kept in touch, and I’ve watched his kids grow. One time, his young daughter sold coffee to learn about e-commerce and the internet. I chipped in $50. Jeff followed up and asked about the quality of the beans. His daughter had heard some complaints.
Who the heck would complain about a kid’s coffee bean project?
I told him, “I just bought the coffee because she’s your daughter. I used the beans as a deodorizer in my garbage can in the garage.”
Jeff wrote back and said, “You are such a good friend.”
It’s the little things in life, right? Being there when someone has a life event, which we’ve both experienced. Saying hi for no reason when someone has been quiet for too long. I don’t have much to offer him, but whatever I have in my limited capacity, it’s available to all of my former work friends.
Recently, Jeff asked, “Hey, any chance you can get your friends to go out and vote for Amelia’s video? She is trying to win scholarship money and prize money for her 4H vet science group. She is the one in the blue shirt and black skirt. Folks can vote once a day through March 15, which is National Ag Day.”
4H and vet science scholarship money? National Ag Day? Heck yes! We can do this!
So please vote for Amelia’s video — once, twice, daily, weekly, or not at all. But let’s all take a second and consider how fabulous it is that some work-friendships endure. Marcus Buckingham and Gallup taught me that happiness at work correlates with friendship, and it’s true. I could not have survived Kemper Insurance without Jeff.
And now I’m excited to introduce you to Amelia. She comes from good stock and she will change the world. Thanks for voting!