On the Road with Dirk – 09.12.21

We Supply America RV

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Dang! How do those that do, get out there and run all those miles each day!? These days I’m happy when I get down to my basement and power up Apple Fitness+ to do a brisk 30 minute walk with Emily, Scott, or one of the other Apple trainers on the treadmill.

There was a day however when rather than the basement, I’d cover miles upon miles running or biking the roads of northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin training for my next long-distance triathlon.

It always amazed me back then when someone would say to me as they asked about the miles I put in ….

“I only run 3 miles.”

I hated hearing that.  I mean, like really hated it!

“Go get in your car,” I’d say to them, “and drive 3 miles.  That is a long long way!”

Why do we feel compelled to diminish ourselves?

The fact that someone else runs a bit longer doesn’t diminish what you have accomplished.  What you find joy in doing.  What makes you – you!

So why do I tell you that story since I haven’t run outside in years?

Well …. Thanks for asking! 🙂

You see, as I traveled the United States this summer on the We Supply America tour, I was fortunate to meet hundreds and hundreds of individuals.

You name the title, tenure, role, job, function … if there is a job in distribution, I got to meet the people who do those jobs.

From the warehouse to the c-suite.  From the cab of the truck to the brand-infused marketing offices.  And from those administration and finance positions to those who keep the technology humming along.

And here is the thing …

Too often, when I asked these individuals, “What do you do for the company?” too often I heard …

“I’m just a <fill in the blank>.”

“I’m just a picker.”

“I’m just in accounts receivables.”

“I’m just a driver.”

“I’m just a <fill in the blank>.”

I hated hearing that.  I mean, like really hated it!

I heard it too often.

And you know what, hearing it just once, is too often.

Have you ever heard anyone you know Stephanie, anyone you work with, ever utter the phrase …

“I’m just a <fill in the blank>.”

We all have!  Haven’t we?

And I think it’s time we obliterate from our lexicon the phrase “I’m just a…”
3 miles is a long way to run!  No matter how far others run.  3 miles is far!

And … here is the point here …

Every job is noble.

Every job has meaning.  And significance.

Every job is perfect for someone.

Every job contributes to supplying America.

The next time you hear someone uttering the thought “I’m just a …” let’s remind them of how far 3 miles really is.

Let’s remind them of how important they are.

Let’s remind them of how this business doesn’t function without them.

Let’s remind them that they are needed and appreciated.

Let’s remind them of the dignity of what it is they do.

Let’s remind them that what they do is in fact noble.

Let’s remind them that they are supplying America.

Let’s ask them to never use the term “I’m just a” ever again.

Here’s to obliterating “Just a …” from our lexicon!


PS:  Here is a video of me thinking through this thought that you might want to share with others.

Thank you to our sponsors

Infor is proud to be a Gold Sponsor of the We Supply America tour in partnership with Dirk Beveridge and UnleashWD. Infor is a global leader in business cloud software specialized by industry, with a special focus on wholesale distribution. We use data-driven insights to solve emerging industry challenges and provide our customers with the modern tools they need to innovate and transform their businesses.

Proton is proud to be a Gold Sponsor of the We Supply America tour in partnership with Dirk Beveridge and UnleashWD. Proton’s innovative artificial intelligence platform provides turn-by-turn directions for sales reps that sell various products by telling them which customers to talk with, when, and about what through our intuitive web app.

One Response

  1. Was great to meet you in Kettle Moraine Mauthe Lake. I find this very interesting and feel your passion in this. I will follow your journey and hope for the best for your adventure as everything is an adventure.

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