Ronnie Milsap has always been one of my favorite country artists. I started listening to his music as a college student in the 70’s and it continued after I married. My two daughters grew up hearing his music on a regular basis. In the early 80’s my wife and I were able to take our young daughter to one of his concerts in North Carolina. Weeks before the concert we had sent a request to Ronnie to see if he could sing one of my daughters favorite songs called, Jesus Is Your Ticket To Heaven. He performed the song and I am convinced it was due to the request we had sent.
Needless to say I was thrilled recently when a business colleague sent me an invitation to a business networking event where the featured speaker was Ronnie Milsap. My thrill doubled when I arrived at the event to find out my table was directly in front of the speaker and a piano was on the stage. Not only did Ronnie speak but he sang a few of his hits. And to top it all off, Ronnie had his picture taken with each guest at the conclusion of the program that we will be able to keep.
Ronnie Milsap’s accomplishments and awards are incredible.
- 12 CMA Awards
- 4 time Male Vocalist of the Year
- 6 Grammy Awards
- 40 # 1 songs
However, it is when Ronnie spoke that I learned much about the man that made me appreciate him more than ever. Allow me to give you just a few nuggets. Ronnie grew up poor. His mother rejected him because he was blind and considered him punishment from God. He was raised by loving grandparents and eventually was able to attend a school for the blind where they saw musical inclinations in Ronnie and helped him develop that talent. Ronnie took advantage of his opportunities and the rest is history. During his speech he sang for his fans his hit song, What A Difference You’ve Made In My Life, indicating that he always sings this song with his fans in mind. He also thanked his wife and said his great life would not have been possible without her. He thanked a number of others. I left that morning a much more committed fan of Ronnie Milsap along with a number of lessons that will be useful both personally and in business. The lessons are:
- Regardless of how you start, it is how you finish that counts.
- The current circumstances do not determine the outcome.
- Tap into your strengths, make them stronger, and use them to your advantage.
- Always be grateful and show appreciation for the people in your life that has made your success possible.
- Never stop giving regardless of your success.