When I was in sixth grade, I was considered an “at-risk” youth. I didn’t live in the best neighborhood and wasn’t exposed to the best influences. This led to me being kicked out or expelled several times before reaching high school.

My dad remodeled and built homes so when I couldn’t go to school as a result of being kicked out, I went to work with him. In going to work with him, I had the opportunity to work alongside him for many people who happened to be entrepreneurs.

Those entrepreneurs would pay me money on the side to help with other projects on the property where we were working. This would often lead to me painting a fence, cutting grass, clean up, or other construction-related labor. This was bonus money because my dad also paid me handsomely!

The opportunity to go to work with my dad is where I developed the love of being self-employed, and where the foundation of my work ethic was formed.

You may be asking, “What does this have to do with Thanksgiving, Keith?”.

Well, Thanksgiving is an opportunity for us all to think about our story and all the things we can be grateful for. I am thankful for the entrepreneurs that were in my life on my journey to adulthood as an at-risk youth. I am thankful for the opportunity to see my Father’s brilliance at work. I am thankful to have the opportunity to hopefully be that light for someone else.

Today, I am most thankful to have an opportunity to serve entrepreneurs, their staff, and their customers. I have learned how difficult it is for entrepreneurs to build and grow a successful business and am thankful to have the opportunity to give back to those that inspired me.

I hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family, friends, partnerships, and neighbors.

Let’s step into gratitude!