A Strong Work Ethic

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A Strong Work Ethic

He was just an average guy. Nothing special to most people, I guess. But to me, my dad exemplified the epitome of a hard-working, loyal employee. He hardly ever called in sick; and if he did, he was really sick. He never dreamed of arriving late, clocking out early, or shirking his duties. He was glad to have a job that provided for his family and spoke proudly of his job with General Motors.

I can still recall him going off to work in his freshly-laundered, navy blue uniform. Mom would pack Dad a nutritious lunch and carefully slip it inside his gray, metal lunch box. Then he’d kiss her good-bye and strut proudly out the door.

Dad worked all kinds of crazy schedules. Sometimes he worked the late shift, so we would eat together as a family when us kids arrived home from school. Then Dad would go off to work. This schedule was extremely difficult in the summer because Mom would have a tough time keeping us quiet so Dad could sleep. Even on those occasions when my brother and I would have one of our spats and wake Dad out of a sound sleep, he seemed to take it all in stride. It was amazing how quiet we got when we heard the bedroom door creak open. My mom would be frazzled and say, “Sorry, Honey, I know you need your rest.” Dad would shrug his shoulders and say, “Don’t worry about it.”

Dad never really complained about much. He worked hard to make ends meet so Mom could stay home with me and my brother. Of course, that was pretty much how it was in most households back then. We didn’t have a lot of money, but Mom and Dad always put us kids first. They rarely bought anything for themselves that wasn’t considered a necessity but always made sure we had what we wanted. Dad wa...

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...ut we can instill in our children an appreciation for hard work and doing a good job at whatever they do. A little less complaining and more willingness to give a little on both employees’ and employers’ parts would certainly go a long way. Treating each other with respect and appreciation helps to create a meaningful working relationship and fosters loyalty that is so often lacking in today’s workforce.

As I look back on my life, I can picture Dad going out the door to work, just like it was yesterday. His flawless example and strong work ethic have influenced my life in so many areas. I have always admired him for putting his family first but am just beginning to realize how his attitudes toward work impacted my own life. His values and work ethic are now being passed on to my own children, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.
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