Do YOU Have ‘A Sense of Personal Legacy?’
A Sense of Personal Legacy…
doesn’t usually blossom overnight, unless you expect to die tomorrow.
And, one’s sense of corporate legacy, is another matter altogether….
A sense of personal legacy, if it emerges at all during a lifetime, is generally a multistep process, materializing with little, much or no fanfare at all, as one….
1. Learns the basics of life and values during one’s youthful years, through family, education, and variety of experiences, especially from one’s mistakes and successes.
2. Gradually, and generally quietly, identifies one’s personal life focus and career path; all the while learning and maturing in a variety of ways, along the way.
3. Cultivates and nurtures his/her personal life (e.g. spiritual perspective or not, political preference or not, family situation or not, amateur sports or not) and career path (e.g. employment or entrepreneurship, corporate religion perspective, local or national politics, amateur or professional sports, active or reserve military, teaching or academic pursuits, or variety of creative outlets, to name just a few possibilities), continue to learn, decide, and mature along the way.
4. At some point in time, during middle age for some, before or after for others, one realizes ‘You are your legacy!’ to those with whom one interacts personally and corporately; and or influences, by one’s chosen career path or paths – whether sequential or concurrent.
5. ‘The Question’, if and when asked, may be – and oft is, ‘What will be my legacy in years to come? And will it be manifested within or through…’
• Interpersonal relationships nurtured, damaged, repaired, and otherwise?
• The family or families begun and nurtured; and or whose members are now out in society on their own?
• Books authored, poems penned, and art created?
• Edifices designed and built; machinery and devices conceived and patented; formulae and methods originated, perfected, and protected?
• Informal and formal recognition by one’s peers?
• Philanthropic giving reflective of one’s interests and passion?
• College or university scholarships and academic chairs funded?
Corporate legacy? May, or may not be, an extension of one’s personal legacy, if and when one is closely identified, positively or negatively, with a particular familial, societal, political, military, religious, sport, organization, or business entity.
So, where are YOU on this lifelong personal and corporate legacy journey? Too young to care? Too busy to notice yet? Just becoming aware? Deciding now? Or; sad to say, maybe too late….
At this point, you’re likely asking yourself, ‘What makes legacy the lively topic for this week’s blog posting?’ Here’re several recent and pending happenstances that should get all of us to thinking.
First; there’re plenty of business pioneers who’ve shaped industries during their careers. But know what? Within the manufactured housing industry and landlease (nee manufactured home) community real estate asset class, these folk have rarely penned autobiographies, nor have biographies been authored about them. In the first instance, there’re but two such autobiographies: John Crean’s The Wheel & I, describing how he founded and grew Fleetwood Enterprises; now, Champion’s Fleetwood Homes. And there’s Jim Clayton’s First a Dream, chronicling his life and work story – with notable differences, in content, between the first and second editions.
To the best of my knowledge, there’ve been but two biographies describing the successful business careers of landlease community developers/owners/operators. The first, a biography titled A Danish American (long out of print), written by Kris Jensen, Jr., describing his immigrant father’s life and work. I recently wrote Kris Jensen, III., suggesting the time might be write to pen a Part II, telling ‘the middle generation of the story’, as Kris III now runs Connecticut – domiciled Jensen Communities. And then there’s the recently released Trailer Park Twins, profiling the colorful and successful business careers of identical twins, Darrell and (the late) Harrell Cohron, of Indianapolis, IN.
So, is there a book in you; or should one be penned, describing your life and work? I’d be pleased to assist, if you contact me for advice. In the meantime, suggest you go to a local bookstore and buy a copy of Dan Poynter’s Self – Publishing Manual, to learn how to organize material, prepare a working outline and author the book; then how to self – publish it. I buy the latest edition of Dan’s book each time I begin the process of writing another nonfiction book. Note that none of the aforementioned four books were published by traditional acquisitions publishers. This observation brings us to the second major step in this creative process, marketing your book! For that purpose, you want to obtain a copy of John Kremer’s 1001 Ways to Market Your Book. Seriously.
Additional opportunities for legacy preservation, where MHIndustry and LLCommunity asset class are concerned, can be found with the RV/MH Heritage Foundation’s prestigious Hall of Fame. “…the first Hall of Fame Awards Banquet (occurred) August 21, 1972, at the (now defunct) RV/MH Midwest Show at South Bend, Indiana, (during which) 14 industry pioneers were inducted. Hall of Fame awards have been made each year since, except 1976, when the organization was inactive.” Since 1972, hundreds of worthy men and women, from these two industries, have been inducted into this Elkhart, IN., domiciled repository of history (library) and artifacts (museum). To learn how to recommend someone for induction into the RV/MH Heritage Foundation’s prestigious Hall of Fame, phone either (800) 378-8694 or (574) 293-2344.
The RV/MH Heritage Foundation beginning its’ final phase of construction, recently announced the availability of naming rights for the Elkhart facility’s Grand Hall ($1,000,000.), Manufactured Housing Hall ($1,000,000.) with shared naming rights, Outdoor Show Area ($1,000,000. per year for three years), complex naming rights for roadway/streets/boulevard ($100,000.), five lakes on premises ($50,000. each), large paving bricks engraved @ $500 apiece, or small paving bricks engraved @ $250. each. Frankly, this is a near once in a lifetime, incredible opportunity, to ensure either your legacy in the MHIndustry and or LLCommunity asset class continues on into perpetuity – or a unique and lasting way for you to commemorate the lifework and memory of others worthy of such honor. Interested? Again, phone either of the numbers cited in the previous paragraph.
Hope you allow the content of this week’s blog posting to inspire you to pause and look at your personal and career legacy, and how you’d like to be remembered during years to come. A few possible alternatives have been described. Now it’s up to you to decide, and take appropriate action. If I can be of assistance to you, in some way to this end, reach me via the MHIndustry HOTLINE: (877) MFD – HSNG or 633- 4764.
1. How to Find, Buy, Manage, & Sell a Manufactured Home Community, George Allen, J. Wiley & Sons, NY., 1996. Appendix B., page # 292. This book available for purchase from PMN Publishing. (317) 346-7156.
George Allen, Realtor®, CPM®Emeritus, MHM
Consultant to the Factory – built Housing Industry &
The Landlease Community Real Estate Asset Class
Box # 47024, Indianapolis, IN. 46247