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On a recent speaking trip to Dallas, I had a free afternoon.

I spent that time going back in history by driving to Ft. Worth and taking a trip down memory lane. My first stop was at an old house on Hemphill Street and then to a small one-story commercial building down the street.

It was at that old house, in 1972, that my then wife and I adopted our daughter, Reena from the Edna Gladney Home. We then came back in 1975 to adopt Adam. The old house was where the main Gladney office was and the one-story building was the small hospital where, in the past, the babies were born.

After reminiscing about those amazing moments so many years ago, I drove about 10 miles across Ft. Worth to the much-larger and very modern present-day Gladney facility. It is now called The Gladney Center for Adoption and is right across the street from a large hospital.

Gladney has been in existence for over 120 years. It was a tenacious woman named Edna Gladney who served as Superintendent of the then Texas Children’s Home and Aid Society for 33 years. In 1936 she was instrumental in getting the Texas legislature to remove the word “illegitimate” from birth records.

A movie was made in 1941 about Edna Gladney and The Home. It was called “Blossoms in the Dust” and starred Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon. To give you an idea of the scope of the modern-day Gladney story, they were adopting out about 300 babies a year in the early 1970′s.

Thus, as I mentioned, we adopted Reena when she was a week old from Gladney in 1972. Then, in 1975, we came back to adopt Adam.

Now we get to the main point of this message.

The kind folks at Gladney did something so special on that July day in 1975 that I believe can be an important lesson in making people feel important. And isn’t that the core of all great relationships.

My wife and I were brought into a beautifully-decorated room that was called “The Delivery Room”. A nurse then took Reena and the two of them went to that little hospital a couple blocks away to go get Adam.

Then, with the assistance of the nurse, Reena “delivered” her new baby brother to us in the “Delivery Room”.

Talk about brilliance. Talk about an amazing level of customer service.
Rather than a new sibling becoming a distraction, Reena took great pride in the fact that she got to see her new brother first and she brought him to us.

What can you and I do, in our everyday lives, to make other people feel important? If you run a company, what more can you do to make your employees and your customers feel important?

Writing “Thank You” notes to people is one way. Making phone calls of appreciation is another way. Calling family meetings or meetings at work where the only purpose is to tell everyone how much you appreciate them is another way.

I believe that we can all “deliver” some appreciation every day and thus make other people feel important.

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A Feel Important Affirmation
I tell people around me how much I appreciate them on a regular basis.
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