Greg Miller Keynote Address
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  • 1. January 25, 2010 Keynote Address to the Utah Nursery and Landscape Association By Greg Miller A bit about me • I was born in Salt Lake City on May 20, 1966. I’m 43 years old • I am the oldest of five kids, four boys and a girl. My sister Karen is fourth • I’ve been married for 23 years to Heidi. I am madly in love with her • I’m proud to say that I still have my first wife and my first car • We have three sons and three daughters • Heidi and I will become grandparents in June of this year • We live in Sandy • When I’m not working I like to spend time in Canyonlands in my Land Cruisers or riding my rode bike • There’s nothing I enjoy more than being a dad • I owned a small tree farm (about 15,000 trees) for a few years and sold it about two years ago • Other than my current job, my dream job is one where I could play in the dirt and drive a tractor all day I was with my dad in April of 1979 when he made the deal to buy his first dealership I have spent time in all parts of our organization • Automotive • Finance • Insurance • Broadcasting • Real estate development • Sports and Entertainment • Racing • Management I feel my career has provided me with tailor made experiences to prepare me for my role as CEO of the LHM organization A bit about our organization. We are about • Freedom and free enterprise o We are blessed to be able to conduct business in a free market economy, which is a wonderful environment in which to bring new ideas to life, and products to market 1
  • 2. o Our level of success is based on our ability to deliver value to the customer, in a professional and timely manner o If we do our jobs well, we generate profits which keep us strong and allow us to grow o We can then use our influence and strength to protect the freedoms that allow us to do business in the first place • Personal growth and development o As a family and an organization, we believe that helping individuals continually increase their skills and knowledge is critical to our collective success o We subscribe strongly to the idea of promoting from within whenever we have a position to fill o Helping our employees grow and develop will only make us better and stronger as an organization • Making our communities better o In order for our companies to be successful in the long run, we must support the communities we do business in, and add value wherever and whenever we can o This can take many forms, from conducting business honestly and ethically, to supporting the high school football team o The people who comprise the communities we work in, are the ones that ultimately give us opportunity o Without their support and patronage we wouldn’t be in business o That’s why it’s important for us to look for and take advantage of opportunities to give back • Developing relationships o We are a relationship-based organization o Think about the way you like to do business o If you’re like me, you like to do business with people you know and trust o We need to provide that same level of comfort with everyone we do business with, whether it’s our customers, lenders, manufacturers, vendors or co-workers o Developing and maintaining strong relationships has served this organization well for many years • Building positive things that last o We plan to be in business a long time o We try to do everything we do with an eye to the future o With every decision we try to determine what will be best for the organization in the long run o We direct our energy and resources toward things that will endure and have a positive influence on the people and communities we’re associated with
  • 3. • Being a force for good in the world o We certainly don’t claim to be perfect, but when faced with the opportunity, as an organization, we try to do what we can to make the world a little better o In fact, my Dad coined the phrase, “Go about doing good until there’s too much good in the world” o This is a timeless idea that we can all practice every day. My responsibilities as CEO • Protect the legal, financial and moral well being of the company • Surround myself with the best and brightest people possible • Articulate my vision of what needs to happen • Eliminate obstacles that prevent people from accomplishing the mission • Provide resources necessary to accomplish the mission • Get out of their way and let them go to work • Inspire everyone to be a little better Lessons I’ve Learned over the Years • Business Related o Identify what you do best and do more of it o Plan- Prepare- Execute  Have a clear image in your mind of what you want to accomplish.  “More important than the will to win is the will to prepare to win.” – Vince Lombardi  Consistent execution of the fundamentals as well as they can be executed is what leads to success or victory o Add value. One of the main reasons we’re in this economic crisis is because too many people were greedy or dishonest, or tried to pursue wealth without adding value through speculation. People contribute to society by producing. As Americans, we can do our part by being the best we can be in all that we do In spite of the crowded and highly competitive market place, there is always room in the world for the best. Bill Child: "Be motivated by excellence, not money. If you are, profits will come." o Keep looking for opportunities to learn until you’re interrupted by an opportunity to sell o Learn to love resolving problems. That way everyday will be full of satisfying activity/experiences, and your skills will always be marketable o Control your expenses: Ed Mansfield: “Your expenses are consistent, they’re consistently $50k/month too high.” • Personal Conduct o We must take responsibility for our own actions and accept the responsibility for the consequences of them 3
  • 4. o Personal accountability is a core value of this organization and the way we operate and manage o "Even with external factors, each of us is still the most responsible for our success or failure." –LHM o Do not let the money and influence you have been blessed with go to your head and turn you in to a heathen. Humility and gratitude are as rare as they are beautiful o Invest in relationships personally and professionally (Dad said I can transfer the ownership and operational knowledge, but you have to build your own relationships) o A person, team, or company is nothing without spirit o Take pride in what you do, and take pride in America. Have respect for one another. It’s a bad thing for this country that we ridicule everyone except firemen: bankers, doctors, CEOs, Policemen o Being anonymous puts us in a position of not accepting responsibility o Self interest and the resulting harm to others has led to over-regulation. Over regulation has bred an environment in which too many people are afraid to take risks, make decisions or in some cases, think for themselves o If I made all the rules, we’d do away with 90% of our laws and replace them with one simple one: IF YOU TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SOMEBODY, YOU GET FLOGGED IN TOWN SQUARE • Time Management: o Highest and best use: spend your time on the most productive things and delegate the rest o Organize, prioritize, delegate o None of us are any busier than the rest, we just spend our time more productively. Some stay busy sleeping or watching TV. Others have long agendas of things to do that build/create things of lasting value and spend their time making them reality. We are all given the exact same amount of time. It's how we spend our time that separates the successful from the mediocre o There is no such thing as spare time. Every second counts o Technology is often more of a curse than a blessing because it enables or encourages distraction o Living in the moment is the hardest thing My Personal Philosophies • Make time and room for God in your life and work hard to make him feel welcome • Make good decisions • Work hard • Do not let the demands of work reduce the quality of your life • Create things of lasting value • Solve Problems (What else could we do, burst in to tears and wait for death?)
  • 5. • Serve others • Be not easily offended • Protect your health • First things first (Stay focused) • Leave the world a little better than you found it • Embrace that which makes you want to be better and shun that which doesn’t • Live within your means • Stewardship versus ownership • If you’re not happy with your life change it • Never underestimate your ability to have a significant positive influence on someone • Quiet Strength Q&A Closing Comments Twitter.com/GregInUtah "We're interested- we're excited- and we have faith in the future." –Bono In the end, the business(es)/organization is nothing more than a mechanism to produce and provide resources that should be deployed to make the world a better place 5