Stacey Morrison

CEO and owner, Ganneston Construction Corp., Augusta

If you want something, you have to work for it. It’s not going to be delivered to your door.

That’s from my dad (Eldon Morrison). He encouraged me that I could do anything in the world. It didn’t matter that I was female, it would not hold me back. He encouraged me in education, in buying this business, he was my silent partner. He’s been in the office maybe four times in 17 years, and three or four years ago, I bought him out.

He’s still available for advice. When I have had challenges in life, he’s there. He tells me, “You are one of the strongest people I know.”

Tom Doak

Executive director, Maine Woodland Owners, Augusta

I think the best advice is: What is it you really need, and what do you really need to accomplish? Understand there are many ways to get there, and don’t let someone tell you there’s only one way to get there. Figure out where you want to be and then figure out the course to get there, but don’t be locked into a particular way or the way it’s always been done. There are many ways to get to the same goal.

A combination of people helped me with my understanding of it and have reinforced it. I have been fortunate in having some people who have rewarded it and said, “I’m glad you figured it out and did it that way.”

Amber Lambke

President and CEO, Maine Grains Inc., Skowhegan

I have a mentor who likes to remind me of a famous quote: Schedule my priorities, and don’t prioritize my schedule. Priorities come first. I deal with the most urgent things right out of the gate. It’s easy to let a full inbox of emails rule you. As I have learned to run a business for the first time, I am always eager to hear what the secrets of others’ success are and incorporate them. It’s easy to get overwhelmed.

Ken Albert

President and CEO, Androscoggin Home Care & Hospice

First and foremost, to be thankful and be appreciative for what you have and what’s given to you, from my grandfather, Ron Ouellette. We lived right next door to him, so I had a lot interaction with him growing up in Augusta, and he had a lot of influence in my life.

For professional advice — make your staff successful. That’s been a mantra through my leadership career. When you endeavor to create a culture for your staff to be successful, the organization or the business will be successful. I can’t remember if I read it in a book, but it’s something that really resonated with me. It’s been a heartfelt strategy over the years. I’ve seen it work whether in government or a business field or the healthcare field because it’s about human beings. I think we all want to be successful. When we’re given the right tools and the right culture and the right environment to get our work done, to feel like we are valued, then that creates success for the organization you are in.

Marc LaCasse

President and CEO, Augusta Fuel Co., Augusta

Surround yourself with talented and hardworking people. My father was probably the first person who gave me this advice, but I’ve heard it dozens of times over the years from people that I respect, people that challenge you and make you think and can be game-changers. It also makes things a lot easier.

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