This weekend, I'm headed to Charleston to celebrate the 30th anniversary of my dad's company, Gallman Personnel Services. I hope you'll indulge me by sharing my feelings on the occasion, which is also what I wrote about him in a surprise book his staff will present to him tomorrow night.
Don't worry that I'm ruining the surprise. If he reads this blog - and let's be honest, that's a big if - it'll be months from now.
When I was little, whenever anyone would ask me what my dad did for a living, I always answered the same way, "He helps people get jobs."
I really didn't know what I was saying or what that meant, I just thought it was so cool that he was the boss. He had his own leather chair that spun all the way around and pencils with our last name on them. I was proud. He also had a paper shredder that he let my brother Jeff and me "play" with, which I'm pretty sure put him in violation of most child labor laws and all parenting handbooks.
My understanding of what Gallman Personnel Services does and what it means to the people who work there has evolved over time. After all, it's where I earned my own first paycheck, stuffing envelopes, copying applications and yes, shredding boxes of documents that needed shredding. At GPS, I learned the importance of a firm handshakes, solid relationships, and about the pride that comes from a hard day's work.
I don't know that I'll ever truly understand the courage it took for my dad to start his own business 30 years ago. And I'll never fully comprehend the sacrifices he and my mom made over the years to create and sustain a successful business and a loving family, ensuring that Jeff and I never wanted for anything.
But I do know how fortunate I am that my first boss has - so far - been my greatest boss - my own amazing Dad.
Thirty years of helping people get jobs - not too shabby. Congratulations on this tremendous accomplishment. I am so proud to be your daughter.