As I look back, I have fond memories of the wonderful high-performance division I was part of and the many amazing achievements we had together, and what our Deputy Assistant Secretary called, the "A Team."
But one thing today is sticking out in my mind and it's this image.
"Enter with a handshake and leave with a hug."
On the first days, when I arrived it was all formality and firm welcome handshakes.
We don't really know you and you don't really know us, but we're embarking on this journey together, and where it takes us no one really knows, BUT we wish you the best of luck--now go out and do great things!
Then on the last days, as I was preparing to leave, the formal handshakes were long gone and instead they were replaced with warm heartfelt hugs (and some special emotional words and cards).
I was no longer a mystery of a person, with just my reputation, coming in to do G-d knows what.
Now, I was a human being that had a genuine history with them, formed relationships with many, had faced challenges together, and had touched not only minds, but also it was apparent, hearts.
I will not forget the special people, nor the many times shared, our accomplishments as an organization, and how we grew.
I am moving forward not only with their tight hugs to more handshakes anew, but also to once again hopefully grow heart-to-heart with people, as further relationships are formed and we make, please G-d, amazing new progress together--for the mission and for the people. ;-)
(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)