Upkins's 'Treat Me Like A Customer' Featured in Memphis News
Author of "Treat Me Like A Customer"
Business leader and author Louis Upkins Jr. was recently featured in Memphis' The Commercial Appeal. Read the article below.
Joking that he was in the presence of "every outlaw in Memphis," Kem Wilson Jr. on Thursday joined about 150 relatives, friends and business executives to celebrate what he considers the most important thing in the world.
Wilson, executive vice president of Kemmons Wilson Companies, hosted a luncheon at the Holiday Inn at the University of Memphis featuring Louis Upkins Jr., author of "Treat Me Like A Customer: Using Lessons from Work to Succeed in Life.
The invitation-only event was designed to inspire area leaders to focus as much attention on their home lives as on their corporate careers, Wilson said.
"Everyone at this event knows what it takes to be successful in the business world, but sometimes we need to be reminded to take that acumen and use it to enrich our families," Wilson said. "Family is the most important legacy."
Through personal anecdotes and observations, Upkins advised business executives how to use professional expertise to succeed in personal relationships.
Of primary importance, he said, is respecting loved ones as much as clients.
"All of us understand what it means to value, respect and even lose a customer, whether you're working at Mapco or running the White House," Upkins said. "The tragedy occurs when you spend so much time on your business that your family life fails. You can build a political career, fail and start over, or build a business, fail and start over, but you can't always start over if you fail with your family."
Upkins practices what he preaches, devoting most of his time these days to spreading the family-first message.
After publishing his book earlier this year, Upkins stepped back from his global branding agency -- which has included such clients as Bono, Whitney Houston and Oprah Winfrey -- to addressing business audiences and faith communities.
Among his suggestions for building stronger familial relationships: Turn off mobile devices when spending time with loved ones, take note of what they are saying and respond.
In other words, treat family members like A-list clients.
"When you're with your family, really be with them. Remember that it's OK to let your phone go to voice mail sometimes," he said.
"As a community, the fabric of family is the most important, and to wear it loosely is a dishonor."
Duncan Williams, president of local investment banking firm Duncan-Williams, plans to take the advice to heart and hopes others do, too.
"I've got three young children and I'm trying to aggressively grow my company, and I appreciate hearing such a successful executive encourage us to make family a priority," Williams said. "It helps us redefine what constitutes success."
For information on how to bring Louis Upkins Jr. to your next event, visit PremiereSpeakers.com/Louis_Upkins.