Insights from Sam Canning - Role Models
As a young apprentice, I never spent a lot of time under the direct instruction of my employer, Mick. He always seemed incredibly busy. He was everywhere except on the bench (cutting). He seemed to forever be on the phone, serving customers, or rushing out the back door. It was very hard to get direct instruction from him. So much so that when he was able to give me 5 minutes of his time, I remember valuing that time immensely.
After working alongside Mick for four years, even though I never had a lot of one-on-one time with him, it's amusing to think how many of his idiosyncrasies I made my own. I mean, of course I did. I wanted to be him! I was an impressionable 17 year old with no prospects (that I was aware of), and he was the owner of this amazing business and the king of his own domain - at a certain level or stage of life that I couldn't imagine. I didn't have what he had, but as his apprentice, I had the right to mimic his confidence and his "style" of butchery. And much like a young man catching himself sounding like his father, from time to time, I still catch myself saying or doing something that I learned from Mick.
Now that I've "grown up" and achieved some pretty amazing goals of my own, I guess the mystery around Mick has faded away, and I can only hope that I was (or could be) as much of an influence to someone as he was to me.