How Our Kids Make Us Better CEOs

If you know me personally, I’m sure you’ve heard countless stories about my kids: their activities, their funny stories, and how their sports teams that I typically coach are doing.  When founding PureSpectrum, I made a personal commitment to not let the rigor of running a startup diminish my family life. One of the ways I’ve gone about that is to maintain the headquarters close to my home, 4.1 miles to be exact.  Being close by allows me to maximize my office time without spending the extra 45 to 90 minutes in one-way commutes. I’ve endured that for most of my career. This also allows me to drive my oldest son to school most days.

Even though the ride to school usually only takes 10 minutes, I really love that time. We discuss a variety of topics: from music to sports to video games, and sometimes…PureSpectrum.  As my son has matured, he asks a lot more about the business but I have always give him what I believe to be an appropriate amount of detail.

About a month ago, I learned that one of his class assignments was to write a business letter to the CEO of a company that he admired.  Most of the time the students will write to large corporations like Nike, Nintendo, or a sports franchise. I was blown away when I received the following letter from him. It turns out he totally encompassed the core values of the company and of my way of leading. Most importantly, he knows what matters most to me…family.

“Dear Mr. Michael McCrary,

It has come to a high priority of attention that you have a very distinguished business that I admire. I am writing to offer you praise for your great company, PureSpectrum. This company should be praised by everybody for the following three reasons.

First, I am a huge fan of your business because no matter what circumstance, you have gone for great and amazing quality with your sample and surveys. In addition, I have had the privilege to hear that you love customers and show your gratitude by giving them free Yeti drinking cups and the big customers have been taken out to fancy dinners by you.

Secondly, I dearly love your company because you are able to trust everyone you work with and hire, but more importantly, you have become friends with them. I think you have made very wise choices about who you hire because the business is growing very fast with you employees.

Lastly, I am proud to know about your business because you take risk, but you make sure that the choices you take do not create chances to hurt the business. I mainly love that you and your business do not get in the way of family or seem less important.

I hope that you keep growing the business the best and safest ways possible just like you already have. You are a great person, the best.”

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