Imagine being at the top of your game, and out of nowhere... boom! It hits you. Something happens to change your whole world.
Imagine being Charlie Bell (search).
Charlie who, you ask? Charlie, the now outgoing CEO of McDonalds, Bell. That's who.
Charlie did nothing wrong. He just has something wrong, very wrong, with his body: colorectal cancer (search). And now he's in the battle of his young 44-year-old life.
He wants to devote all his time to this personal battle and is passing up the corporate one he no doubt aspired to all his life.
Suddenly priorities matter for Charlie and no doubt his board — concerned he had missed some crucial meetings at a crucial time for a company going through crucial changes.
Life has a habit of throwing curve balls at you.
Bell himself was a fast replacement for Jim Cantalupo (search), who died of a heart attack last April, only hours before he was to address a convention of McDonald's franchisees.
For Charlie the sky was the limit, but his body had bigger limits. Somehow I don't think Charlie's much concerned with resurrecting his corporate life. I bet you he's more concerned with resurrecting his health. Being sick — really sick — does that to you. It forces you to prioritize: Giving up the things you once thought mattered and focusing on things that aren't things at all. Things like breathing and family, mot money and titles.
Leave it to a man steeped in fast food to give us all far more lasting... food for thought.
Get well Charlie, and soon.
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