These were the words I heard from my first boss about two months west of graduation. "That is, if you want to be taken seriously," he added. I felt my ears turning red as sweat began to literally drip inside my shirt.
I was a bit embarrassed, but I also knew what he was saying was true and that he cared enough about my career to say what he did. After nervously clearing my throat, I told him I thought he was right, and that he would quickly see a change.
He knew his remark had cut me a bit, but he also left me with a molecule of his philosophy that I never forgot – “The sting will pass…but the stuff will stick!”
Ron was not only my boss, but also we became friends and I often asked his advice on a wide range of issues, knowing he wouldn’t spare my feelings for the truth. He died much too young, and I’ve missed him for nearly 20 years now.
But, I haven’t forgotten him or that the real lesson for me that day was about more than clothing.