WE DID IT !
Australind Veterinary Hospital was humbled to receive Employer of the Year and Dr Rob was awarded Business Person of the Year at the recent South West Small Business Awards.
We were proud but humble to be recognised for treating our staff well, developing their interests, providing them with autonomy and a purpose motive. We are assembling a happy team devoted to best practice and outstanding customer service.
We were so excited about winning that award that we didn’t even think it was possible to win another award. Dr Rob was also awarded Business Person of the Year for 2012. This is an outstanding achievement when you consider the number of high quality businesses in the entire South west of WA.
We live in a great country. It is conceivable that you can rise to be truly great in whatever your talent determines. There is so much opportunity. It breaks my heart to see the senseless waste of young lives who choose antisocial behaviour; choose drugs; choose mediocrity and choose to be unemployed.
Our quality of life is determined by the choices we make.
I actually had a very humble beginning. I grew up in South Grafton in NSW. I lost my father when I was a small boy. My mother was widowed very young and was a primary school teacher. We weren’t well off at all. My neighbour in those early years was a kid called Troy Daley who would become Troy Cassar-Daley and a famous Australian country singer. Troy made me feel rich in those days. He was what we call underprivileged. Troy became great “against all odds” and Australians love an underdog punching above their weight. Troy moved away when he was about 11 and I didn’t see him again for about 6 years. He had been travelling to Tamworth where he busked on the street as a teenager. He then formed a band called Little Eagle. I bumped into him in a Grafton Hotel where he was playing. He told me of his dream and he was taking his band to the country music festival in Tamworth…the rest is history. Troy chose to be successful.
I couldn’t play music. I went to university since youth unemployment was about 20% in Grafton in those days. As well as 40 hours of lectures and practical labs per week and countless hours of study, I worked in many jobs to fund food and shelter. I worked the grave yard shift in an Ampol service station. I worked in a factory. I worked on building sites in the city. I worked for a furniture removal company. I worked for a landscaper. I mowed lawns. I worked loading trucks in the Meyer warehouse loading boxes of goods onto trucks and unloading them at the other end. I worked as a bouncer at the Brisbane Broncos Rugby League club and I worked occasionally behind the bar at Lang Park as it was known in those days.
I became a vet. I have made every mistake it is possible to make in business so I was very humbled to be awarded Business Person of the Year for 2012. I live by the rule that the only people that never make mistakes don’t try anything.
I have read literally hundreds of books about successful people; business people; and businesses of all kinds. It is important to look outside of the box because sometimes a problem can be solved by joining the dots between different ideas from outside of your immediate environment.
The thing that struck me most was that success can be learned like most things in life. We all have good luck and bad luck in equal proportions but luck favours the persistent. There is a great poem called Invictus by William Ernest Henley that inspired Nelson Mandela during his long and brutal incarceration. It closes with the lines :
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul
You can choose to be happy and you can choose to be successful.
“ We are not imprisoned by our circumstances. We are not imprisoned by the luck we get or the inherent unfairness of life. We are not imprisoned by crushing setbacks, self inflicted mistakes or our past success. We are not imprisoned by the times in which we live, by the number of hours within a day or even the number of hours we’re granted in our very short lives. In the end, we can control only a tiny sliver of what happens to us. But even so, we are free to choose….free to become great by choice” – Jim Collins