It Takes More Than Brains To Succeed
by Joe Bonura, CSP
Six weeks ago I was in San Angelo, Texas, where I completed a successful
field day with four sales people. The sales manager drove me to
the airport for my 5:00 PM flight to Dallas, and then home to Louisville.
I had not checked my voicemail all day -- something I never do.
When I received the message, my whole world turned upside down.
My wife said that she was at the hospital with our oldest son. Doctors
discovered that he had a brain tumor the size of a golf ball on
the right side of his brain. That was the bad news; the good news
was the tumor was benign.
How could that be? He was in great physical condition. He was running
five miles a day, three days a week. He lifted weights, bench pressing
NO GO TONIGHT
I was scheduled to return home to Louisville by 10:30 PM. I was
already making plans to go straight to the hospital upon my arrival
in Louisville. We boarded the plane on schedule, and the plane backed
off from the gate.
I knew there was a problem when they shut the engine down, and
the pilot made an announcement that the airport mechanics were on
their way. After four or five delay announcements, the airline cancelled
the flight. If I remained in San Angelo, I would not arrive home
until five the next day.
WHERE THERE'S A WILL, THERE'S A WAY
When I asked the airline person if he could get me home earlier
if I left out of Dallas, he said yes and booked me on the 6:00 AM
flight out of Dallas with an arrival time of 8:00 AM in Louisville.
It was the only option, so I took it.
ATTITUDE = ALTITUDE
I spoke to my son and he was very upbeat and positive about the
whole situation. In fact, he was taking the news better than I was.
I told him I loved him and would see him in the morning.
ANGELS AMONG US
The next problem was to make the four-hour drive from San Angelo
to Dallas. When I asked if anyone wanted to share a rental car with
me to Dallas, a young man named Chase volunteered to share the car
and the driving with me. After I told him my story, he said that
he was going to Dallas anyway, and he would pay for the car. I asked
him to at least let me share the driving, but he declined and drove
the entire four and one-half hours. When we arrived in Dallas, he
asked to pray with me. God sends angels when we need them, and he
was my angel that night. In my weakened mental state, I don't know
if I could have found my way out of San Angelo, much less find a
hotel in Dallas that was close to the airport. Chase knew the highways,
and he knew Dallas as home.
My son had surgery three days later, and the operation went better
than the doctor had anticipated. Friends and relatives all over
the world were praying for him, and his recovery was nothing short
MAKE CALLS, MAKE MORE CALLS, MAKE MANY MORE CALLS
The doctor predicted that my son would be out of commission for
at least thirteen weeks. Ten days after the surgery, he was on the
telephone making sales calls.
GET OUT OF HERE
Fourteen days after surgery the physical therapist released him
from the hospital, saying that they could devote their time to those
who most needed it.
RECORDS ARE MADE TO BE BROKEN
He was told that he could be out of work for three months. He was
back to work within four weeks. He was told that he would not drive
for three months. He was back behind the wheel in six weeks.
DEDICATION DOES IT
My son has always been a very dedicated sales person, and his ordeal
brought out the best in him. It has also brought out the best in
many of us who have watched him cope and grow.
LISTEN FOR YOURSELF
If you click to the following link, you can listen to a telephone
message that he left me one morning when he was making his sales
calls. (if link is not clickable, please copy and paste into your
PROUD AS I CAN BE
Do I sound like a proud father! Yes, you bet! I am proud of him,
his wife, and his three teenage children for the support they gave
throughout his recovery.
WHAT'S YOUR PROBLEM?
Now when I hear sales people complain about making sales calls,
I say, "My son had brain surgery and was making calls -- What's
© 2007 Joe Bonura & Associates, Inc.