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President's Blog Summer 2014
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Make Your Bed
Written by 
Mike Wilson, NAECP President
Director - Employee Concerns, BP America

At this year’s commencement exercise for University of Texas graduates, the keynote speaker, US Navy Admiral William H. McRaven, said something I find very profound, “If you want to change the world start by making your bed. If you make your bed every morning you will have accomplished the first task of the day. It will give you a small sense of pride and it will encourage you to do another task and another and another."

Admiral McRaven continued by telling the UT graduates, 
"By the end of the day that one task completed will have turned into many tasks completed. Making your bed will also reinforce the fact that little things in life matter. If you can't do the little things right you will never do the big things right. And, if by chance you have a miserable day, you will come home to a bed that is made - that you made - and a made bed gives you encouragement that tomorrow will be better.“

This is great advice and I am taking it to heart. 

One of the Admiral’s obvious messages is that every small accomplishment makes a difference. It motivates us and helps us to better recognize the big picture. I sometimes get lost in how much I still have to do and don’t realize how much I have already done.  I believe the Admiral’s lesson is a great one for all of us to remember.


Over the past year as President of the NAECP and an active member
of the Board of Directors, I have really come to appreciate what a great organization we have. As an organization driven and controlled by our members, I am always impressed with the energy, passion and willingness that our members put forth. Our organization is clearly a “get it done” group and that is extraordinary when you consider, with the exception of our administrator (Tanya), we are all volunteers.

The NAECP website mentions that we were established 26 years ago by a group of eight Employee Concerns Managers from the nuclear industry.  Long-time member and Director Peter Rail recently recalled the first “real” conference-style meeting, “In the early nineties, the Employee Concerns Forum (previous name of the NAECP) met in Phoenix.  It was the first time we had over 20 participants and a representative from the NRC. It was definitely home-grown from the very beginning.”

The NAECP has now grown to more than 500 members who are managers, investigators, attorneys and Human Resources professionals within nuclear utilities, the Department of Energy, manufacturing, and oil and gas industry. This has all been accomplished through the hard work and efforts of literally hundreds of members. The NAECP is clearly a reflection of the membership that actively contributes through Board involvement, conference attendance and networking.

As you read through this newsletter, you will see updates from our committees and workgroups.  Please take a minute to learn about the great things happening in the NAECP.  It is your organization and your engagement is important!

Also, please consider becoming a more active member. While the NAECP currently offers a rich array of benefits, like our bi-annual NAECP conferences where members benchmark best practices, network, and collaborate, and our associated training academies, we are always looking for new ideas and ways to continue to grow what we offer our members.  Your input and “brain-power” is always welcome. It does not take a lot to get involved.  Everybody can make a difference.

As a side note, when I last checked the YouTube video of Admiral McRaven’s speech it had nearly 2.1 million views. McRaven’s message had many important lessons about doing your best during difficult times and measuring people by their sincerity. I watched it, absorbed it, then went and made my bed.

Have a great day,

Mike W.

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