I had the opportunity recently to reconnect with the husband-and-wife team who ran a PR firm for whom I worked for in the mid-1980s. Howard and Sheila Geltzer (who we rank-and-file types always called the ‘G’s’) operated a very successful agency for some 30 years.
When I toiled as an account supervisor at their firm, I saw the G’s as great, but flawed, leaders. They taught us a good deal about positioning, client management, strategy and, of course, media relations. But, agency profitability, client over-servicing and accounts receivable issues always seemed to intrude in any and all conversations.
As a 26-year-old know-it-all, I resented the financial discussions and thought ill of what I perceived to be a pennywise, pound foolish, management style.
Fast forward a few decades and you’ll find an older and wiser me. In fact, I told the G’s that I now understand and totally respect what they’d accomplished and how they’d managed the business. All of which reminds me of the famous Will Rogers quote: "The older I get the smarter my father gets."