Chamber News

"Mature" ambition is everywhere!
From the Chamber Chair - September 2014
Published: Monday, September 8, 2014
By: Bob Gilbert, Bartlett and West - 2014 Chamber Chair

“Mature” Ambition is Everywhere!

Several years ago, our pastor relayed a saying to us that has stuck with me. It was about the difference between “immature ambition” and “mature ambition.” He said that immature ambition was “knowing what you want and how to get it” while mature ambition was “knowing what you have and how to give it away.” The Jefferson City area abounds with individuals who know the difference and choose to live out their ambition maturely.

When I began my career here in Jefferson City, the Chamber was the avenue I chose to get involved in the community. I witnessed businesses, individual employees, elected officials, not-for-profits, and community members working diligently toward a better tomorrow for us all. And most of this work was on a voluntary basis! This exposure to the many initiatives underway in our area was inspiring. It still is. The people of this giving community display to visitors and long-time residents alike a spirit of volunteerism, community service, and caring for others that I think could rival any other community in the country. In recent weeks, I have witnessed so many of our Chamber’s businesses step up to contribute to the United Way’s kickoff to their annual campaign, giving large sums of resources to set the pace and inspire others to give. I have seen our business leaders support the startup of the academies at the Simonsen Ninth Grade Center through participation in the classroom, and individual interactions with students so they could interview real people in business to relate to their studies. I have seen how many businesses and individuals took a day off and put in a hard day’s labor to support the Day of Caring. I saw our young professionals put together an incredible program of speakers for the annual YP Summit to help provide professional development to the young people in our businesses. I have seen a group of Chamber volunteers put together a new program, called Jeff City INSIGHT, which will help new hires who have moved into this community get more connected with us and find ways to serve. We are entering the fall and starting to reserve dates in our calendar for some of the major fundraising events for so many different great organizations. Our businesses’ and individuals’ generosity will again be evidence of this remarkable character trait of Jefferson City.

“Knowing what you have and how to give it away” is a realization of the abundance of resources (time, talent, and treasure) that we have, but it is also about finding out how to link those resources to the initiatives that need them. A person that makes this realization AND connection is bound to be one of the most effective, satisfied, healthy and happy people you can find. We are fortunate in this community to have so many leaders and businesses who exhibit this mature form of ambition. They have helped create a legacy of generosity and volunteerism that inspires us all to serve.

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