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I have read a couple of blogs in the last week (by Seth Godin and Karl Staib), that really made me think and ponder “what am I doing with my life?”  Luckily, I come back to “I am doing some good things and also what I love.” 

Karl is a guy I have met a few times and done some work with, but he lives in Europe so he is not someone I regularly communicate with.  But he is someone I consider a friend and expect he would say the same of me. 

His post explained why he has been quiet for a while.  He has cancer.  He has a very favorable prognosis but he has cancer. He wrote on lessons from chemotherapy.  That is frightening to me because my family history says I will be there soon. But, my biggest takeaway was his saying “I don’t regret many things. I do regret not living more in the moment and appreciating each one.

Simple, yet profound thoughts. 

Seth wrote a column recently on how people that own their own business can’t help but do what they do. We don’t have any choice.  Being the boss isn’t enough. We have to own or there is some hole in our inner being.  He singled out franchises as a possible exception, but I will single Great Harvest out as the exception to the exception and say that this is true about our bakery owners.

Most Great Harvest owners are dedicated, hard working souls and I don’t think any of us regret what we do.  We do make a difference.  We do live in the moment.  Well, they do.  I am still working on that.  We love our families and give them love.  We support each other and give us love, too. And some of it is tough love. 

I actually saw my two sons bonding this weekend.  Eadie and I looked at each other and smiled as much as we hGreat Harvest employee photoave in a long time.  Two headstrong boys coming of age and learning to appreciate each other is no small thing.  Definitely a moment to savor. One of the best things I deal with in Great Harvest is when I talk to bakery owners and start with “How’s it going?” I almost always get an answer that starts with how their kids are.  That is a reason why we do what we do.

As we go through our adult lives, working for a living is a required task for most of us.  I am thankful every day that I can do something that I don’t regret and that helps fill my needs in life.

Do you love what you do for a living?

I am Mike Ferretti, the President and CEO of Great Harvest. But, I am also a dad who grew up in a world with old fashioned business ethics. Before Great Harvest, I thought those days and companies were gone. Luckily, I now get to work with a group with a strong moral compass that genuinely lives "Give generously to others" and "Run fast to serve customers." And we do it with more than just lip service in a way that allows us to set an example for others. I am proud that my kids are proud of what I do for a living.