When it comes to starting something, especially in America, we tend to idealize the individual and their accomplishments: the athlete, the musician, the entrepreneur. As I have grown older, I’ve come to realize just how good work — anything noble and worthy — was always built by a team. And often, that isn’t as recognized as it should.
Much of our western worldview today follows that of Greek mythology by idealizing individuals and overemphasizing their accomplishments and personal epics. What has become to stand out to me more are the ancient Jewish/Hebrew stories where we see great works accomplished by a community for a greater good. The focus is placed on the community more so than the individual leading.
I have enjoyed sharing stories about the beginnings of Buffalo Jackson throughout this week. Early on I tried to grow the brand alone and, quite honestly, that had been lonely and came at a cost. The greatest story to share is what has been happening the last few years and where the brand is headed.
I am excited about the future.
Buffalo Jackson is not about what I had to overcome to build a brand. It is about a team of wonderful friends and leaders who helped build this company to be what it is today and why we are pushing onward and forward. A story of “we.” It is about building and supporting alongside one another, being stewards of each other, and being led by the values Buffalo Jackson sets out to instill.
This has been initiated with the help of my mentor and friend, Glenn, who I asked to step in to help lead our organization as our CEO last year. I came to realize that a founder plays an important role but must require certain skills to continue to grow a business to the next level that go far beyond me. Glenn helped build a team and has guided us ever since. I came to realize that I could either try and be something I was not, or I could allow those who were much more gifted than me, step into the places I couldn’t. They have helped build this brand to be more than what I could have dreamed of doing myself.
I think that is why I struggle with this Greek hero perspective. In the end, we are humans who really need each other and thrive best when we are accomplishing together. I am still on a journey of discovering and learning to shed this independent persona.
That is why I am so hopeful and curious about the future. It’s a living vision that is growing with the great individuals now surrounding it, shaping it, and leading it forward. There is strength with our team. We have kind leaders, strong visionaries, creative and caring team members that I love and respect. I am excited to see our brand move into the next decade and I believe it is our community now building something for the greater good and for the future of Buffalo Jackson.
Thank you for being a part of this journey as well. This idea would have never left my garage in Colorado if it wasn’t for your love and support.