Depths of Exploration

Gloria Stuart passed away recently. She was 100… born on the Fourth of July in the year our nation celebrated the 134th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. She was a beautiful actress during the early years of ‘talkies,’ and a founding member of the Screen Actors Guild. Then Gloria quit making films to raise a family. Fifty years later she reappeared, playing the aging role of Kate Winslet’s character Rose in Titanic, and became the oldest person to be nominated for an Academy Award.

“When I graduated from Santa Monica High in 1927, I was voted the girl most likely to succeed,” she said. “I didn’t realize it would take so long.”

Stuart touched movie watchers when Rose tossed the ‘Star of the Sea’ sapphire into the ocean at the end of the film. It was a symbolic gesture that served as an exclamation point and soft landing following the intense drama surrounding the depiction of the sinking of the unsinkable ship.

She also should serve as motivation for everyone who wakes up in the morning tired and weary from daunting challenges. After all, if Gloria Stuart – who appeared in films with Boris Karloff, Charles Laughton and a seven-year-old Shirley Temple… all before 1936 – can deliver a wonderful performance as she approached 90, shouldn’t all of us be able to make it through the next day with a little more energy in our step?


Find a Way to Surprise

One more of the Top 10 things I learned in 2009:


A Big Bow Wow – We put down our 16-year-old Golden Retriever in July. Those who have experienced that passage know it’s tough. As we worked through detachment the next several days, our vet surprised us in two ways. First, a nice sympathy card arrived, signed by her entire staff. Then, she gave us a hand-painted casting of Genevieve’s paw print. Those wonderful gestures touched our family. Regardless of the business you’re in, look for opportunities to connect with your customers’ hearts. They’ll remember.


It’s All About Connections

Up next in the Top 10 Things I learned in 2009:


Social Disruption – My generation is known as technology ‘Immigrants’… as opposed to our ‘Native’ kids. We’re learners; they’re naturals. In April, I started Tweeting. In July, I began blogging. Toss in Facebook, Linked In and a few others and – whew –  there are many things to learn and track. Social Marketing is here to stay; the world wants to connect, and all of us need to determine the strategy behind our efforts and the best way to balance everything.