Today was a not so good day for Buttin.
No matter what a misfit does - it's always difficult to let them go. As an owner, you must put the best interest of the company ahead of any individual, without much regard to their personal circumstances. However, as a human (especially a kind one, like Buttin) this is nearly impossible to do. An individual has a family, a story and is (for the most part) good. A company (although made up of many individuals with their own families, etc.) is more of a thing. It's easier to walk in the shoes of a person than it is a company. We understand the BIG PICTURE, but it doesn't make it any easier.
Buttin loves me an incredible amount. I know this because (among other things) he tries to shield me from most of the extremely stressful sbo responsibilities - especially letting a misfit go. I've never had to do it.
Buttin always tells me that the day he stops feeling for the misfits we let go, is the day he has lost his humanity and the ability to be a excellent father and husband. I agree. The alternative to feeling empathy for people is feeling nothing for them - AND -that's no way to live.
It's hard on days like today to remind Buttin that he IS good, but I'm going to try.
September 3, 2010
This is just a quick note to thank you so much for your kind letter and your return of my self imposed late fee. It overwhelmed me that there are still wonderful people like you in the world.
I respectfully beg to differ with you, as it was my responsibility for the payment and so the fault for the delay lies squarely upon my shoulders. However I thank you for understanding what I was going through personally that took my focus away from my financial responsibilities.
The above note was from a customer whose husband died right after we put flooring in her home. She paid her invoice about three months late and included a self imposed late fee. Buttin returned her late fee along with a sympathy card.
Perhaps, the BEST business decision (if made by say, Donald Trump) would have been to keep the late fee. However, that's not the way Buttin and I think. The day this business makes us people we no longer want to know is a day I never want to see.
OK, Buttin - if my little sappy note didn't make you smile. Maybe this will.