Two people passed away recently who I never personally met, but who had a significant impact on my life nonetheless. The first was Zig Ziglar; this renowned motivational speaker was one of those people who helped shape how I look at the world.
I’m sure graduating seniors would prefer cash, but I give our friends who are graduating three books – “In His Steps” by Charles Monroe Sheldon, Dale Carnegie’s “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” and Ziglar’s “See You at the Top.” These three books aren’t considered literary masterpieces by any means, but they helped change and shape my life.
Ziglar left the world with many great sayings, but one of my favorites is: “You can get everything in life you want, if you only help enough other people get what they want out of life.” It’s the primary driver behind our own seedstock business. Ziglar authored many books and gave countless talks that will continue to impact others for a very long time.
Another late legend is Bud Williams, the pioneer of low-stress stockmanship. He not only helped to change the way we work with our animals, but the way we look at our jobs and our role as stewards of cattle. Perhaps his greatest legacy is that he taught many who will pick up his banner and carry his message and wisdom forward.
There are many others who may not have a similar stature within our industry or the world as these two men, but nonetheless left behind a rich legacy of contributing to this industry and the lifestyle that is ranching. My hope is that we not only recognize their contribution, but embrace the examples they have set.