This week North Americans are celebrating national holidays of freedom and independence.
July 1, known as Canada Day, commemorates the 1867 formation of the Dominion of Canada, when the British colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Canada united and became a “kingdom in its own right.” This was an important step toward the eventual passing of the 1982 Constitution Act, finally making Canada a nation independent from Britain.
In the United States, July 4 is celebrated as Independence Day. On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Continental Congress, including this unforgettable phrase, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Seven years later, the American colonies won true independence from Britain.
No matter which part of North America you reside, this week is a time for parades, celebrations, backyard barbeques, and plenty of fireworks lighting up the night sky. I encourage you to enjoy the holidays with your family and friends, and commit to be a safety champion. I will do the same, and in the spirit of CBS, have 3 commitments to share:
1. Kids: Missy and I are blessed with three young, energetic, competitive children. We will likely find a small town parade to attend, which includes old vehicles, some animals, and candy being thrown towards the edge of the streets. Temptations abound. I will make sure our kids know the boundaries, literally do not cross this line.
2. The Grill: Missy already bought the steaks for tomorrow afternoon. Like any proud American (& Texan) man, I will be firing up the grill to sear those hunks of meat. I will make sure to inspect the grill before use and have the proper tools to keep from burning myself and the steaks.
3. Summer PPE: Both of the above activities include being outside. I will wear the proper “summer personal protective equipment” from head to toe – wide brimmed hat, sunglasses, clothing that breathes and protects, and sunscreen. And I will drink lots of water (140+ ounces).
We have many things on our immediate schedules after these summer holidays. Our Leadership Team and some extended leadership staff will be meeting the week of July 9-13 here in Pasadena, and then the Superintendent Conference begins in late August. I am excited to bring our teams together as we aggressively prepare for H2 2018, focused on improving our performance and chasing perfection.
Specific to our Leadership meeting next week, and in keeping with our cultural pillar of OPEN & Transparent, I have attached our agenda. As you will read, we have a Field Focus. I welcome your thoughts, as we need all hands on deck to deliver greatness, excellence, the “pinnacle”.
Focus on the field resources that execute, and what behaviors we want to drive for excellence.
Focus on the field resources that lead, and how we develop, retain, and evaluate excellence.
Focus on the people that serve the field, and how we make decisions on strategy, investments, and vision, all with the eye on delivering excellence.
I thank all of you for your hard word through H1. Enjoy your holidays.
- APM President Jake Locklear