Giving Back During Tough Economic Times, Part 7

This final way to give back during tough economic times is the most personal.

Business can be stressful. Life can be stressful. The holidays – especially if you’re in retail – certainly bring this to the fore.

Do your part to reduce the world’s daily stresses – and your own – by spending more quality time with friends and family. Part of destressing during the holidays may be setting boundaries and seeing less of your family or only as much as you can reasonably handle, but if you have grandkids or your wife needs to get away for a weekend, or whatever the case, set up time to see people and be social.

You may say either, “I’m not stressed so why make this special effort,” or “I really can’t handle more family right now,” but that’s what makes this a “giving back” activity.

You have no idea how this tough economic environment is treating others. They could be stressed about finances, business, life and everything else. Your friends and family could need nothing more than to sit down for a drink, a fun dinner or a relaxing movie night. You can facilitate that by including friends and family in “for no reason” activities and really listening to them and what’s going on in their lives.

Life is too short to stress too much about jobs and family relationships, and tough economic times only tax these relationships more. If your family has hit rough spots, whether interpersonally or financially, you need to move forward after these speed bumps of life.

I promise that you’ll be a better person for this shared time, and the positive effects will be reflected in everything else you do – not to mention the effects your time and kindness will have on other people.

This concludes my Giving Back During Tough Economic Times 7-Part Series. I hope you enjoyed it and that you got some valuable ideas for how you can give back, both now and when times aren’t so tough. Even when things are looking up for you, your family or the US economy, there are always people in need everywhere. Just think creatively about what you can do to help them.

Are there ways that you give back that you’d like to share with us so that we can get good ideas? Please share anything I haven’t mentioned so far below or feel free to comment on anything I did mention.

Not Keeping It in Your Pants can be Very Expensive

Here’s something stupid that CEOs, presidents and business owners do: they fail to keep it in their pants.

The biggest case in recent memory concerned the dear old president of these United States, William Jefferson Clinton – or Ol’ Willy as the stories will one day be told.

His failure to keep it locked down had to do with so many issues: his ego, his self esteem, his power, and the simple urges of simple men – or for short, men. Interestingly enough, it’s these same forces – ego, esteem, power and manly urges – that drive men to start companies and become presidents in the first place (money could be added to the list, too), but that’s no reason to get led around by your lesser brain.

If for no other reason (and when I’m talking about neglecting reasons I include things like the sanctity of marriage, practical morality, metaphysical morality, putting your family or business first, etc.) than to avoid getting caught, do not cheat on your wife or spouse while running a company.

Don’t cheat on them anyway but especially if you’re running a company it’s a bad idea. You will get caught – especially if your company is facing a crisis.

It always comes out . . . and not in the way to which you may have grown accustomed.

What’s worse is that these issues always have a way of arising when things are already headed south . . . and not in the way to which you may have grown accustomed.

I was dealing with a guy who was originally in the business of manufacturing apparel. He couldn’t keep focused on his core business, however, because he had a dream of designing the perfect yacht.

Lucky for him, he succeeded in making such a great yacht that he ended up on the cover of a major yachting magazine for his unbelievable hull design.

Unlucky for him, when he and his yacht were photographed for the cover shoot his scantily clad girlfriend, simply busting with joy and enthusiasm, ended up on the yacht in the background of the photo.

When his wife saw the cover of the magazine, she filed for divorce and took the company with her. After all, the business was started with her daddy’s money.

Another quickie, so to speak. The CEO and Chairman of the Board of a retail establishment – in the middle of his company’s bankruptcy – got caught with his kids’ babysitter. The messiness that ensued caused him to lose focus on the company’s issues, which ultimately had to be sold off in pieces.

Both of these men (and I’ve got 20 more of these stories) lost everything – businesses, money, families, and the lives they had built – because they couldn’t keep it in their pants.

Not keeping it in your pants can be very expensive.

Know anything about this and want to share a story?