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Message From Gardant CEO – February 2023




From the Desk of the CEO, Rod Burkett

We celebrate President’s Day in February, and I most often think of Abe Lincoln when this day rolls around. Like many people, I have often quoted our 16th President when I have needed a relatable leadership example or a simple but impactful life lesson. While Lincoln struggled periodically with bouts of depression, he was also an avid reader and studied the great minds of world history, often reading by candlelight in his log cabin setting.

Following are several of my favorite leadership lessons originating from Lincoln’s speeches and writings, which also serve as helpful guidelines for life in general:

No one is a winner by themselves. Success is a team effort, even it’s a team of two – “I’m a success today because I had a friend who believed in me and I didn’t have the heart to let him down.”

Persistence is one of the key components to success. The majority of success are developed over long periods of time….overnight success are rare – “I am a slow walker, but I never walk back.”

Sometimes the going get’s rough, and we are tempted to surrender or quit…but think of the people and the objectives that are worth fighting for, and keep going – “When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.”

Preparation is critical…never approach your passion, your dreams or your work with a dull set of skills – “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first 4 hours sharpening my axe.”

Too many times we form a first impression when meeting someone, and we don’t seek to truly understand them before we judge them or choose how to feel about them – “I don’t like that man. I must get to know him better.”

Happiness is a choice…you should give yourself permission to be happy no matter the circumstances of your life and simply will yourself to be happy – “Most folks are as happy as they make up their minds to be.”

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